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Epilepsy Res. 2013 Mar;104(1-2):175-80. doi: 10.1016/j.eplepsyres.2012.09.005. Epub 2012 Sep 21.

Epileptic seizures in Japanese patients with multiple sclerosis and neuromyelitis optica.

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MS Center, National Hospital Organization, Utano National Hospital, Kyoto, Japan.



To examine the incidence and clinical features of epileptic seizures in Japanese patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) and neuromyelitis optica (NMO).


We reviewed medical records of all patients who visited the Neurology Clinic in Utano National Hospital between January and December, 2009, and enrolled 63 MS patients who fulfilled the McDonald criteria (2005) (mean age, 41.1 years) and 31 NMO patients who fulfilled the Wingerchuk criteria (2006) (mean age, 44.6 years). Patients with a history of epileptic seizures were selected and their clinical features were obtained.


Four MS patients (6.3%; 2 men and 2 women; mean age, 32.5 years) and 4 NMO patients (12.9%; 4 women; mean age, 36.0 years) had epileptic seizures. Disease onset age of MS patients with seizures was significantly younger than those without seizures by 13.1 years, and Expanded Disability Status Scale of NMO patient with seizures was significantly higher than those without seizures by 2.2. All 8 patients showed brain lesions on magnetic resonance imaging and 2 MS patients had tumefactive demyelinating lesions. Electroencephalography showed interictal epileptiform discharges in 5 patients. Seizure types of 6 patients were recognized as partial seizures based on clinical semiology. All patients responded to antiepileptic therapy well. In both MS and NMO, there were both seizures with and without concurrent relapse.


Similar to MS, NMO patients possibly have higher risk to develop epileptic seizures than general population.

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