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Folia Psychiatr Neurol Jpn. 1980;34(3):227-32.

The role of perinatal brain injury in the genesis of childhood epilepsy.


In order to elucidate the significance of perinatal brain damage in the etiology of epilepsy, 139 full-term neonates considered to have suffered a severe degree of perinatal hypoxia were examined neurologically and electroencephalographically for two-nine years. Thirty-eight (27.3%) of them developed epileptic seizures during the follow-up period. Sixteen infants developed infantile spasms at ages two-13 months, while 10 manifested generalized motor seizures mainly at one-four years. They all had neonatal background EEGs suggesting a severe degree of brain damage, although the infants with infantile spasms and myoclonic seizures showed more abnormal neonatal EEGs than those with other types of fits. The combination of multiple factors, mainly exogenous and constitutional, is necessary for the development of epileptic seizures, especially in patients with a lesser degree of brain damage.

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