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J Int Neuropsychol Soc. 2007 Jul;13(4):642-52. Epub 2007 May 18.

Neuropsychological outcomes in children of mothers with epilepsy.

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1
Hospital for Children and Adolescents, Department of Pediatric Neurology, Helsinki University Central Hospital, Helsinki, Finland. elisa.kantola-sorsa@hus.fi

Abstract

The study investigated the nature of the effects of maternal epilepsy on cognitive performance of the offspring. One hundred fifty-four children of mothers with epilepsy aged 5 to 11 years (study group), along with 130 control children, comparable with respect to IQ, socio-economic status, age, and gender underwent a neuropsychological assessment using subtests from the NEPSY: A Developmental Neuropsychological Assessment, tapping attentional, auditory-verbal, visuomotor, fine motor, and memory abilities. The study group scored significantly lower than the controls on measures of attention, memory, and fine-motor function. Deficits were more marked in but not limited to the subset of the study group exposed to maternal medication in utero. Group differences on auditory attention were found only in younger children. Valproate-exposed children obtained lower scores on sentence repetition, as well as on the more demanding part of a test of auditory attention, than other children in the study group, suggesting weaknesses in working memory in the former subgroup. Confounding by maternal epilepsy type and polytherapy complicate interpretation of this finding. Differences between subsets of children not exposed to anti-epileptic drugs in utero and controls suggest that both drug exposure and genetic factors may contribute to cognitive deficits associated with maternal epilepsy.

PMID:
17521493
DOI:
10.1017/S1355617707070804
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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