Magazine article The Exceptional Parent

Infantile Spasms

Magazine article The Exceptional Parent

Infantile Spasms

Article excerpt

Q At about five months of age, our son developed a typed of seizure disorder called infantile spasms. Prior to this time his development was normal. He has brief myoclonic spasms lasting a few seconds but occurring many times each day. After a bout of these spasms, he is irritable, then he seems to become drowsy. He is now one year old and is delayed in all areas. He has been on a number of different anticonvulsants including Valproic acid, benzodiazepine, and ACTH. Nothing has seemed to work very well for any period of time. Recently, I heard about a fairly new medication called "Sabril" do has helped in the treatment of infantile spasms. Is this medication worth trying?

A Infantile spasms, sometimes called West syndrome, is a type of seizure disorder with a clinical pattern that most commonly consist of frequent myoclonic spasms (unpredictable contractions of one or more muscle groups) and a unique electroencephalographic (EEG) pattern called "hypsarrhythmia." As in your son's case, most children with infantile spasm develop this condition in the first year of life. Other terms for infantile spasms that describe some other types of seizures associated with it are "lightening" or "jackknife" convulsions. …

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