Department of Pediatrics, Epilepsy Center, Inje University College of Medicine, Sanggye Paik Hospital, Department of Pediatrics, Kangbuk Samsung Hospital, Sungkyunkwan University School of Medicine, Department of Pediatrics, University of Ulsan, College of Medicine, Asan Medical Center
Aim. Benign childhood epilepsy with centro-temporal spikes (BCECTS) is the most common idiopathic partial epilepsy in children. Treatment attitudes remain a controversial issue. We examine features that could suggest refractoriness at onset. Methods. We retrospectively reviewed the medical records of 144 children with BCECTS diagnosed at the Division of Pediatric Neurology, Asan Medical Center, from March 1, 1995, to April 30, 2002 and treated with AEDs. The patients were subdivided into two groups according to the number of antiepileptic drugs used for effective seizure control. Results. Of the 144 patients, 75 were male and 69 were female, with a mean age at seizure-onset of 7.2 ± 2.3 years (range, 2.1-14.3 years); 119 children were taking one antiepileptic drug (AED) (Group A), and 25 were taking more than one (Group B). There were no significant group differences in female-to-male ratio, prescribed AEDs, number of seizures before the start of treatment, interval between seizure-onset and start of treatment, presence of secondarily generalized seizures, or presence of bilateral EEG abnormalities. The groups differed however, in mean age at seizure onset (7.6 ± 2.2 years versus 5.1 ± 1.9 years, p < 0.05) and percentage of patients with seizure-onset before 3 years (p < 0.05). Conclusions. When treated with AEDs, children with BCECTS usually respond well. However, an earlier onset of seizures is associated with more frequent seizures and initial refractoriness to medical treatment.