alexa Surgical treatment of severe autistic regression in childhood epilepsy


Epilepsy Journal

Author(s): Neville BG, Harkness WF, Cross JH, Cass HC, Burch VC

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We report 2 children with partial epilepsy who manifested social and language regression and partial recovery after surgical treatment. One child had seizures since the first 2 weeks of life, caused by a right temporal dysembryoplastic neuroepithelial tumor and regression in the latter part of the first year; seizures were relieved and some functions were recovered after temporal lobe resection at 12 months of age. The second child developed epilepsy at 3 years 3 months, and between 5 years 9 months and 6 years 1 month he became aphasic (Landau-Kleffner syndrome) and lost social functioning, manifesting a very severe behavior disorder. He exhibited a significant improvement in communication, social functioning, and behavior after left multiple subpial transections. Both children manifested evidence of subclinical seizure activity in both temporal lobes. Their clinical picture was one of combined language and autistic regression, and the autistic features demonstrated a clear response to surgical treatment. We suggest that in pediatric epilepsy surgical programs, autistic regression should prompt urgent investigation if drug treatment is not effective.

This article was published in Pediatric Neurology and referenced in Epilepsy Journal

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