Navigation Links
Preemies May Be at Higher Risk of Epilepsy Later in Life
Date:10/3/2011

By Ellin Holohan
HealthDay Reporter

MONDAY, Oct. 3 (HealthDay News) -- Babies born very preterm -- defined as 23 to 31 weeks of gestational age -- are five times more likely than full-term newborns to have epilepsy as an adult, according to a recent study.

The study, based on Swedish medical databases, also found that being born just a few weeks early increased the risk of having the seizure disorder as adults. Babies born as late as 35 to 36 weeks into a pregnancy had a 76 percent higher risk of epilepsy later in life than those born between 37 and 42 weeks, or full-term.

Noting the enormity of the increased risk, one study author said the findings show the importance of "advancing our knowledge" regarding the consequences of preterm birth.

"The magnitude of that effect was surprising," said Dr. Casey Crump, a study author and assistant professor of medicine at Stanford University. The finding "highlights the need to better prevent preterm births, and increases awareness of these effects among survivors of preterm birth, their families and their doctors."

He noted that most people born prematurely live full, "high-quality" lives.

The study is published in the Oct. 4 issue of the journal Neurology.

Epilepsy -- recurrent brain seizures with no obvious cause such as high fever or meningitis -- is the most common neurological disorder, according to background information in the study. It affects more than 50 million children and adults worldwide, the study noted. Seizures occur when a sudden electrical discharge affects the brain, resulting in symptoms ranging from vision changes and staring, to uncontrolled twitching and jerking of the whole body.

The disorder, which often tapers off in adulthood, can be controlled by medications.

In the study, researchers analyzed adult medical records of 630,090 Swedish babies born between 1973 and 1979, looking for hospitalizations for seizures and prescriptions of epilepsy medications from 2005 through 2009. Only drugs used almost exclusively for epilepsy were included as disease indicators.

About 28,000, or 4.4 percent, of those surveyed were born prematurely. Nearly two-thirds of that group were born close to term, at 35 to 36 weeks' gestation.

In the United States, about 13 percent of births are preterm, Crump noted, which "could possibly be due" to maternal risk factors that include infections, other illnesses, high blood pressure, diabetes and excess weight.

Among the adults in the study, 922 were admitted to a hospital during the four-year study period. But 4,405 had been admitted at some earlier point during their lives for treatment of the condition.

The data were adjusted for factors that could affect the outcomes, such as gender, mother's marital status, parental epilepsy and the presence of other illnesses.

An "unexpected" finding, Crump said, was that babies born after more than 43 weeks' gestation received drug prescriptions for epilepsy as adults, suggesting that they also could be at risk. This finding needs "confirmation in other populations," he said.

Preterm infants in the study were more likely to be male, have a twin sibling, be late in the birth order and come from low-income parents with limited education. Their mothers were more likely to be younger than 20 years old, or older than 35. But analyses done after adjusting for these factors showed the same results, the study noted.

The study drew praise from another expert for tracking a large number of infants, or cohort, into adulthood.

"I'm very confident in the results of this study. It is a one of a kind. We don't have many of these kinds of studies here," said Dr. Satyanarayana Gedela, a pediatric neurologist specializing in childhood epilepsy at Children's Hospital in Pittsburgh.

Other studies have suggested a relationship between premature birth and epilepsy in adulthood, but they were small and had mixed results, the study reported.

The researchers conceded that their approach was limited by the need to base gestation periods on mothers reporting their last menstrual periods rather than sonograms, which were not routinely used at the time.

More information

To learn more about preterm birth, visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

SOURCES: Casey Crump, M.D., Ph.D., assistant professor, medicine, Stanford University, Stanford, Calif.; Satyanarayana Gedela, M.D., pediatric neurologist, Children's Hospital, Pittsburgh; Oct. 4, 2011, Neurology


'/>"/>
Copyright©2010 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Lung Function of Late Preemies May Improve With Age
2. Preemies at Risk for Psychiatric Disorders as Teens, Study Contends
3. Autism Tests for Preemies May Be Faulty, Study Suggests
4. New Eye Treatment May Save Preemies Sight
5. Better Nutrition Seems to Help Preemies With Lung Disease
6. Care of late-preterm preemies may be insufficient
7. New Tool Aims to Predict Problems in Preemies
8. Nitric Oxide Doesnt Seem to Help Preemies Lungs: Report
9. For Preemies, Better Use of Oxygen Improves Survival
10. DHA Supplements for Mom Good for Preemies
11. Probiotics Beneficial for Tiniest Preemies
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Preemies May Be at Higher Risk of Epilepsy Later in Life
(Date:8/16/2017)... ... August 16, 2017 , ... Paul Vitenas, MD, FACS , ... Top Doctor. The annual list identifies the nation’s top physicians, in a variety of ... it to the top of Castle Connolly’s coveted ranking. , Castle Connolly is the ...
(Date:8/16/2017)... ... August 16, 2017 , ... SGNA Standards of Infection ... reprocessing cycle, both between patient procedures and before storage, is a requisite practice ... important to the prevention of disease transmission and nosocomial infection as cleaning and ...
(Date:8/16/2017)... ... 16, 2017 , ... Richard Strawn’s new book Surgical ... of a cancer diagnosis, surgery and recovery, the Psalms provided encouragement and hope, ... God shows love to those who are sick., Surgical Psalms contains 36 reflections ...
(Date:8/16/2017)... ... August 16, 2017 , ... ... an opportunity for men and women to train as hospice volunteers. Volunteers provide ... life-limiting illness. For over 30 years, the agency has trained volunteers to be ...
(Date:8/16/2017)... ... August 16, 2017 , ... ... and marketers of high-quality anti-aging skincare solutions, recently announced the launch of two ... are an affordable, yet effective alternative to expensive plastic surgery or in-patient cosmetic ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:8/15/2017)... OCEANSIDE, Calif. , Aug. 15, 2017  AOTI Inc. announced ... Advanced Oxygen Therapy Inc., has recently opened a New York City ... the ever-increasing usage of its unique Topical Wound Oxygen (TWO 2 ... approved by the Accreditation Commission for Health Care (ACHC) under the ... ...
(Date:8/8/2017)... Second-quarter 2017 revenues of $876 million ... continuing operations Second-quarter 2017 ... million Second-quarter 2017 Sterile ... Second-quarter 2017 adjusted diluted earnings ... to $0.93 Second-quarter 2017 ...
(Date:8/7/2017)... , Aug. 7, 2017  Endo International plc (NASDAQ: ... agreements to resolve virtually all known U.S. mesh product ... to resolve the known remaining U.S. claims at reasonable ... beginning in the fourth quarter of 2017 and continuing ... its second quarter 2017 results, the Company intends to ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: