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Acta Neurol Scand. 1998 Mar;97(3):164-70.

Pregnancy and epilepsy: a retrospective study of 151 pregnancies.

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1
University Clinic of Neurology, University of Copenhagen, Denmark.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

We studied the course of pregnancy in women with epilepsy to identify possible risk factors which might complicate the epilepsies and pregnancy outcomes.

MATERIAL AND METHODS:

Data were collected retrospectively from the records of 151 pregnancies in 124 women with epilepsy from 1978-1992. Epilepsy variables were compared with that of non-pregnant women with epilepsy matched for age. Obstetric and neonatal variables were compared with those of all deliveries in the same unit from 1979-1992 (n=38,983).

RESULTS:

Pregnancy among patients with epilepsy was more likely to occur in women with relatively mild epilepsy. In 12% of the pregnancies, the women were untreated while 71% were on monotherapy. Twenty-one percent had increased seizure frequency during the pregnancy. Perinatal deaths among newborns of epileptic mothers (1.3%) was more frequent but not significantly increased compared to the background population of 0.5% (95% CI 0.2-4.7). A total of 5.3% had congenital malformations compared to 1.5% in the controls (95% CI 2.3-10.3). No neural tube defects were observed. Maternal treatment with phenytoin was significantly related to the occurrence of congenital malformations, P=0.04.

CONCLUSIONS:

Most women with epilepsy have an uncomplicated pregnancy and normal healthy offsprings. Maternal treatment with phenytoin might be associated with congenital malformations. No other risk factors could be identified.

PMID:
9531432
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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