Epilepsy in Boys with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy

M Etemadifar, S Molaei


Background: Regarding the unexpected frequency of epilepsy in patients with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD), this study was conducted to assess the impression of Duchenne - related epilepsy. Methods: After definite diagnosis of DMD in 57 children attended to neurology clinics, a questionnaire including demographic variables and data related to symptom presentations was completed for each one. If history of epilepsy was present, complementary information on the background of epilepsy (based on history taking and Paraclinical data) was obtained. Results: Among 54 patients with DMD, seven cases (12.3%) had the history of epilepsy versus 0.4 - 0.5% in general population (p<0.001). Known causes of epilepsy were ruled out in these patients. From 7 patients with epilepsy, 6 cases had mild mental retardation and one of them had normal mental status. Conclusion: Our data suggests that epilepsy may be a rare associated feature of DMD. Absence of dystrophin in the central nervous system (CNS) may cause suppression of inhibitory synapses in cortex and hypocampus which in turn brings epileptic foci into play.
Keywords: Epilepsy, Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy (DMD), Dystrophin.

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