What doctors don't know about treating kids with epilepsy

December 3, 2012
What doctors don't know about treating kids with epilepsy
Survey finds significant gaps in knowledge.

(HealthDay)—Many American doctors lack knowledge about the proper diagnosis and treatment of epilepsy in children, according to a new study.

Researchers surveyed pediatricians, and neurologists/neurosurgeons in central Texas to assess whether they were using current best-practice guidelines when dealing with children with .

The results showed that many of the participants were misinformed about what constitutes (defined as epilepsy that cannot be controlled with medications), when to refer young patients for surgical evaluation, and what types of seizures may respond to surgical treatment.

In addition to misinformation about surgery, there were significant gaps in knowledge about drug treatment, according to the researchers at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas and Dell Children's Medical Center, in Austin.

The survey respondents were misinformed about when or after how many seizures they should prescribe anti-convulsant drugs for a patient. There was also a lack of knowledge about how many failed attempts at drug treatment should occur before considering another form of therapy that doesn't involve drugs, the study found.

The study was to be presented Monday at the annual meeting of the American Epilepsy Society, in San Diego.

"Observance of practice standards is important in achieving optimal and quality of life for ," study author Dr. Freedom Perkins said in a society news release.

"Early aggressive treatment is essential. But timely and appropriate care is not likely to happen if are misinformed. This survey gives us baseline information that can be used to focus educational initiatives for improving provider knowledge," Perkins explained.

Perkins said he did not believe the survey findings were unique to Texas.

Data and conclusions presented at meetings are typically considered preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed medical journal.

Explore further: Long-term study shows epilepsy surgery improves seizure control and quality of life

More information: The Epilepsy Foundation has more about epilepsy in children.

Related Stories

Non-epileptic seizures may be misdiagnosed longer in veterans

September 5, 2011

Psychogenic non-epileptic seizures may go undiagnosed for much longer in veterans compared to civilians, according to a new study published in the September 6, 2011, print issue of Neurology, the medical journal of the American ...

New drug may reduce seizures in epilepsy

April 13, 2011

A new drug called perampanel appears to significantly reduce seizures in people with hard-to-control epilepsy, according to results of the first clinical trial to test the higher 12 mg dose of the drug. The late-breaking ...

Recommended for you

Zika in fetal brain tissue responds to a popular antibiotic

November 30, 2016

Working in the lab, UC San Francisco researchers have identified fetal brain tissue cells that are targeted by the Zika virus and determined that azithromycin, a common antibiotic regarded as safe for use during pregnancy, ...

Zika and glaucoma linked for first time in new study

November 30, 2016

A team of researchers in Brazil and at the Yale School of Public Health has published the first report demonstrating that the Zika virus can cause glaucoma in infants who were exposed to the virus during gestation.

Flu forecasts successful on neighborhood level

November 30, 2016

Scientists at Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health developed a computer model to predict the onset, duration, and magnitude of influenza outbreaks for New York City boroughs and neighborhoods. They found ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.