Electroencephalographic studies have been done in two groups of hereditary ataxia: a group bearing the classical features of Friedreich's ataxia and a group clinically different described as autosomal recessive spastic ataxia of Charlevoix-Saguenay (ARSACS). The qualitative anomalies observed in the two groups were similar and were comparable with the data reported in the literature. However, the main difference between the two groups is the greater incidence of EEG abnormalities in the ARSACS group, which suggests more involvement of the cortical and subcortical structures. This is reinforced by the lower I.Q. performance in the latter patients. Some comments are made about focal EEG findings, behavior and I.Q. In general, EEG was not considered a valuable instrument for diagnosis since no qualitative electric pattern could be identified. With regard to prognosis, EEG cannot be used as a criterion, since there is no relation between the degree of anomalies and the severity of the disease and since EEG does not worsen with the progression of the disease.