Clinico - diagnostic and therapeutic relevance of computed tomography scan of brain in children with partial seizures

Ann Indian Acad Neurol. 2013 Jul;16(3):352-6. doi: 10.4103/0972-2327.116928.


Background: Therapeutic relevance of computed tomography (CT) in children with partial seizures is reported to be remarkably low (1-2%). However, in the developing countries where infections involving the nervous system are common, routine CT scan of brain may help in finding treatable causes of seizures.

Objective: Aim of this study was to evaluate the significance of CT scan of brain in the management of children with partial seizures.

Materials and methods: Children with partial epilepsy, whose predominant seizure type was focal motor seizures, were included in the study. CT scan of brain was done in all children aged between 1 month and 12 years with partial seizures of unknown etiology prospectively. The clinical findings of these children were noted along with the CT findings.

Results: Between August 2001 and July 2002, of the 200 children with seizure disorder 50 children who satisfied the inclusion criteria were included in the study. CT scan of brain was normal in 16 children (32%) and was abnormal in 34 children (68%). Twenty children (~60% of abnormal scan) had potentially correctable lesions: Tuberculoma (n = 13), neurocysticercosis (n = 3), and brain abscess (n = 4). Five children had changes representing static pathology that did not influence patient management. The clinical features correlated with CT findings in 78% children.

Conclusion: Children with partial motor seizures have high probability of having abnormal findings on CT scan of brain, especially, neuro-infections which are potentially treatable. Therefore, CT scan brain should be carried out in all children with partial motor seizures especially, in developing countries.

Keywords: Children; computed tomography scan; partial seizures.