Epilepsy in patients with Cornelia de Lange syndrome: a clinical series

Seizure. 2013 Jun;22(5):356-9. doi: 10.1016/j.seizure.2013.01.017. Epub 2013 Mar 7.


Purpose: Cornelia de Lange (CdLS) syndrome is characterized by multiple congenital anomalies and mental retardation. Epilepsy is a clinical feature found in about 20% of cases, but there are no data about its electroclinical features and long-term outcome.

Methods: we describe a clinical series of fourteen Caucasian CdLS paediatric patients who developed epilepsy, with special reference to the long term prognosis.

Results: Epilepsy manifested between age 0.6 and 16.3 years. The majority of patients (64.3%) presented with partial seizures and interictal EEGs mainly revealed focal epileptic paroxysms involving temporal and parietal areas. Thirteen of 14 children became seizure-free with treatment. Valproate monotherapy was used in eight patients (57.1%), controlling seizures in seven. Otherwise monotherapy with topiramate, levetiracetam, carbamazepine and oxcarbazepine appeared to be effective in controlling seizures in four cases. At the end of the follow-up (age range, 7.3-24.2 years; follow-up, 8.2±3.9 years), thirteen patients were seizure free (three still in therapy), while in one patient seizures were not controlled.

Conclusions: Partial epilepsy is the most common type of epilepsy in CdLS patients. In the majority of cases the prognosis of this epilepsy is favourable and therapy can be withdrawn after few years of complete seizure control.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Carbamazepine / analogs & derivatives
  • Carbamazepine / therapeutic use
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • De Lange Syndrome / complications
  • De Lange Syndrome / diagnosis
  • De Lange Syndrome / drug therapy*
  • Electroencephalography / methods
  • Epilepsies, Partial / diagnosis
  • Epilepsies, Partial / epidemiology*
  • Epilepsies, Partial / etiology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Oxcarbazepine
  • Seizures / diagnosis
  • Seizures / epidemiology*
  • Seizures / etiology
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Valproic Acid / therapeutic use


  • Carbamazepine
  • Valproic Acid
  • Oxcarbazepine