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Gazzetta Medica Italiana - Archivio per le Scienze Mediche 2019 September;178(9):645-50

DOI: 10.23736/S0393-3660.18.03907-4


language: English

Comorbidities and childhood epilepsy

Burcin SANLIDAG 1 , Mehmet A. DIRIK 2

1 Division of Pediatric Neurology, Department of Pediatrics, Faculty of Medicine, Near East University, Nicosia, Cyprus; 2 Department of Radiology, Faculty of Medicine, Dr Suat Gunsel University, Kyrenia, Cyprus

BACKGROUND: Approximately one-quarter of childhood epilepsy has an underlying etiological factor, whereas 3 quarter is idiopathic. Comorbid disorders have been reported in both symptomatic and idiopathic groups of patients. The present study was aimed to discuss comorbid disorders and epilepsy.
METHODS: Children aged 1 month to 18 years who had been evaluated in the Department of Child Neurology of Near East University between January 2012 and September 2017 and diagnosed with epilepsy were enrolled in the study.
RESULTS: Two hundred and fifty-four patients were enrolled in the study. One hundred and forty-four of them were male and 110 were female. One hundred and ninety-eight (78%) of the patients had no identified underlying etiological factor; whereas in 56 patients (22%), there was an identified etiological factor. The most common etiological factor was brain insults (10.6%). Psychiatric comorbidities were detected in 48 patients (18.9%) of the study group. Among psychiatric disorders, ADHD was the most frequently seen with a percent of 11.8. Psychiatric comorbidities were more commonly seen in idiopathic epilepsy group of patients with a rate of 20%. Among the group of patients with symptomatic epilepsy, the rate of psychiatric diseases was 14.3%. A headache was detected in 12.4% of the patients who were evaluated for headaches. Structural lesions on MRI were highly related with underlying etiologic factor but no correlation had been found in cases with comorbid psychiatric disorders.
CONCLUSIONS: Structural lesions remain inadequate in describing underlying pathologies. Epilepsy may just be a component of a spectrum of diseases with different involvements. Describing underlying mechanisms will be important in the management of patients in a multimodal approach.

KEY WORDS: Child; Comorbidity; Epilepsy; Etiology

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