Author(s): ChlioutHeraut F, Rubinsztajn R, Ioos C, Estournet B
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Abstract OBJECTIVES: Sleep recordings and evoked potentials (EPs) were used in five comatose children to evaluate their predictive value for outcome following a severe comatose state. METHODS AND SUBJECTS: The protocol included EEG, Brainstem Evoked Responses (BERs), Somatosensory Evoked Potentials (SEPs) and polysomnography. From 10 to 15 days post-coma (D10 to D15), EEG and clinical examinations were carried out every second day, then one day in four from 15 to 30 days post-coma (D15 to D30), and one day in seven from D30 to six months (M6). Evoked potentials and Polysomnography were recorded on D10-D15 or D30 in the second month (M2) and in M6. Of the five children, three were in anoxic coma and two in traumatic coma. All had extensive lesions and a Glasgow Coma Scale (GCS) score of less than five. The results of the EEG, polysomnographic and EP recordings were compared to the clinical outcome. RESULTS AND CONCLUSION: In the three anoxic comas we observed BER abnormalities and the absence of SEP N20 associated with wide cortical lesions with brainstem extension. Sleep recordings showed major alterations of the wake-sleep cycle without any improvement in M6. Abnormalities included loss of the normal REM-sleep pattern associated with alteration of NREM sleep and periods of increase in motor activity without EEG arousal. This sleep pattern appeared to be associated with involvement of the brainstem. In the two traumatic comas, alterations of the early cortical SEP responses were less severe and the BERs were normal. Some sleep spindles were observed as well as the persistence of sleep cycles in the first weeks post-coma. The combined use of EEG, EPs and polysomnography improved the outcome prediction in comparison with the use of just one modality. EPs and sleep recordings were far superior to clinical evaluation and to GCS in the appreciation of the functional status of comatose children. The reappearance of sleep patterns is considered to be of favorable prognosis for outcome of the coma state, as is the presence of sleep spindles in post-trauma coma. This study showed that EPs and sleep recordings help to further distinguish between patients with good or bad outcomes.
This article was published in Neurophysiol Clin
and referenced in Journal of Neurology & Neurophysiology