The research team that developed the guidelines is part of the Infantile Spasms Working Group led by John Pellock, M.D., professor and chair of the Division of Child Neurology in the VCU School of Medicine.
As part of its investigation the group examined scores of studies and reviewed current clinical practice with a commitment to establish criteria that target early diagnosis, timely treatment options and support for patients and their families.
To establish an infantile spasms diagnosis, a clinical evaluation is needed in which doctors obtain a complete history and physical examination of the patient. Spasms observed by parents or physicians may vary from a cluster of as few as two to more than 100, lasting from less than one minute to more than 10 minutes.
A full electroencephalogram (EEG) evaluation that studies electrical currents in the brain is conducted to uncover any abnormal pattern characterizing the disorder. Next, the etiologic diagnosis to determine the nature and cause is made, aided by MRI. Such a diagnosis will aid in establishing the appropriate treatment strategy.
“Following the completion of the history, physical and neurological examinations, as well as EEG and MRI analysis, roughly 70 percent of patients will have an established diagnosis without the need for extensive metabolic testing,” noted the ISWG team. “This saves valuable time to initiation of treatment and reduces evaluation costs.”
Full details of the study are now available online in Epilepsia and have appeared in the August print issue.
To read the official release, visit http://www.wiley.com/WileyCDA/PressRelease/pressReleaseId-81437.html.
- About VCU and the VCU Medical Center
Virginia Commonwealth University is a major, urban public research university with national and international rankings in sponsored research. Located on two downtown campuses in Richmond, VCU enrolls more than 32,000 students in 211 certificate and degree programs in the arts, sciences and humanities. Sixty-nine of the programs are unique in Virginia, many of them crossing the disciplines of VCU’s 13 schools and one college. MCV Hospitals and the health sciences schools of Virginia Commonwealth University compose the VCU Medical Center, one of the nation’s leading academic medical centers. For more, see www.vcu.edu.
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