Obstetric events as a risk factor for febrile seizures: a community-based twin study

Twin Res Hum Genet. 2008 Dec;11(6):634-40. doi: 10.1375/twin.11.6.634.


Adverse events during the perinatal period have traditionally been thought to contribute to the risk of febrile seizures although an association has not been found in large epidemiological studies. Disease-discordant twins provide a means to assess the role of non-shared environmental factors while matching for confounding factors and avoiding difficulties of epidemiological studies in singletons. This study aimed to examine the association of obstetric events and febrile seizures in a community-based twin study. Twenty-one twin pairs discordant for febrile seizures were ascertained from a community-based twin register. Obstetric events were scored using the McNeil-Sjöström Scale for Obstetric Complications and expressed as a summary score (OC score). The frequency of individual obstetric events in affected and unaffected twins, the within-pair differences in OC scores and other markers of perinatal risk including birthweight, birth order and Apgar scores were examined. No significant difference was found in the frequency of individual obstetric events, nor in OC scores between affected and unaffected twins. No differences in birth weight, birth order, 1- or 5-minute Apgar scores were observed. Our results confirm previous findings that obstetric events are not associated with the risk of febrile seizures.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Twin Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Female
  • Hospitals, Community
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications / genetics*
  • Registries
  • Risk Factors
  • Seizures, Febrile / genetics*
  • Twins / genetics*