-- Robert Preidt
THURSDAY, Feb. 7 (HealthDay News) -- Infants and children who
survive a bleeding stroke may be at increased risk for seizures and
epilepsy, a new study finds.
Each year in the United States, about six and a half newborns
and children out of every 100,000 suffer strokes. About half of the
strokes are bleeding strokes, typically caused by the rupturing of
weakened or malformed blood vessels.
In this study, researchers looked at 73 infants and children,
ranging from newborns to 18 years old, who suffered bleeding in
their brain tissue, a type of stroke called intracerebral
About 60 percent of the newborns and 43 percent of the older
children had visible seizures at the time of the stroke or within
one week after the stroke. Of the 32 patients who had continuous
brain monitoring, 28 percent had seizures that would otherwise have
The researchers plan to explore whether these subtle seizures
are a risk factor for more seizures, epilepsy or other problems
over the long-term, according to the study.
The findings were scheduled for presentation Thursday at the
American Stroke Association's annual meeting in Honolulu. The study
also will be published simultaneously in the journal
The investigators also found that 13 percent of the patients
developed epilepsy within two years, and that those who had
elevated pressure in the brain that required medical or surgical
treatment were more likely to have seizures and epilepsy later.
"Information on the risk for later seizures and epilepsy provides practitioners with concrete numbers that can be presented to families," study lead author Dr. Lauren Beslow, an instructor of pediatrics and neurology at Yale University, said in an American Heart Association news release.
"While an estimate of 13 percent may seem low at two years, the rate of epilepsy might be greater at later points," she added.
The Nemours Foundation has more about
children and strokes.
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