Learning disorders in epilepsy

Epilepsia. 2006;47 Suppl 2:14-8. doi: 10.1111/j.1528-1167.2006.00681.x.


Learning disorders (LD) are disorders interfering with academic performance or with daily living activities requiring reading, writing, or mathematical abilities in subjects with a normal intelligence quotient. The prevalence of LD in the general population has been found to be 2-10% and reading disorders are the most frequent subtype. Epilepsy is one of the commonest neurological disorders in childhood with an estimated prevalence in 4-5/1,000. Epilepsy is considered to be idiopathic or cryptogenic in approximately two-thirds of cases. LD are more common in people with epilepsy than in the general population: about 25% of patients with epilepsy are said to have LD. Various psychosocial, medication-related, and epilepsy-related factors may be associated with LD in epilepsy. LD can be either permanent or state-dependent. Permanent LD are caused by a brain lesion and/or a stable brain dysfunction. In contrast, state-dependent LD are potentially reversible and treatable; they are caused by epilepsy-related factors. If allowed to persist for a long period, a state-dependent LD may become permanent.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Brain / physiopathology
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders
  • Epilepsy / diagnosis
  • Epilepsy / epidemiology*
  • Epilepsy / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Learning Disabilities / diagnosis
  • Learning Disabilities / epidemiology*
  • Learning Disabilities / physiopathology
  • Prevalence
  • Prognosis
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  • Terminology as Topic
  • United States