Purpose: To evaluate the incidence of newly presenting seizures in children in the area of Sousse, Tunisia.
Methods: From June 1, 1998, to May 31, 1999, all children aged 1 month to 15 years with first provoked and unprovoked seizures were included. Children with febrile seizures were excluded. All suspected cases were systematically referred to the Department of Functional Explorations of the Nervous System where a detailed questionnaire was filled out by a neurologist. All the patients underwent an EEG. Only 12 patients had a computed tomography (CT) scan.
Results: A total of 175 patients were included. Eighteen (10.3%) patients had acute symptomatic seizures, and 157 patients had unprovoked seizures. The incidence rate of first unprovoked seizures was 102.1/100,000. In this latter group, some epileptic syndromes were individualized on strict electroclinical criteria.
Conclusions: However, nearly 75% of the cases remained cryptogenic, one of the major reasons that no predominant risk factor was identified in this population.