Neonatal seizures are associated with high morbidity and mortality, but they can be difficult to diagnose because they often present with subtle signs and symptoms. Our June issue, Seizures in Neonates: Diagnosis and Management in the Emergency Department, reviews common presentations and causes of neonatal seizures, considerations for emergency department management, and more.
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Here are a few key points:
- Compared to seizures in older children, neonatal seizures can be subtle and difficult to diagnose, leading to higher mortality, worse prognosis, and long-term neurodevelopmental sequelae.
- The leading causes of neonatal seizures are hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy from birth trauma, vascular disorders, infections, and acquired metabolic derangements. Brain malformations, inherited seizure disorders, drug sequelae, and kernicterus can also lead to seizures.
- The age of the neonate at the time of seizure presentation can aid in determining etiology, as can maternal, perinatal, and feeding histories. Physical examination findings such as macrocephaly, bulging fontanelle, facial dysmorphisms, organomegaly, congenital rashes, skin lesions, and myoclonus can also aid in diagnosis.
Last Updated on December 13, 2021