Apneic seizures in the newborn


Electroclinical features of convulsive apnea and its relation to the behavioral state were described on the basis of polygraphic recordings from 21 newborns with various underlying disorders, including perinatal anoxia, purulent meningitis, and intracranial bleeding. The most frequent ictal discharges were rhythmic alpha waves, but other types of discharges, such as repeated sharp waves, rhythmic theta waves, delta waves, and repeated paroxysmal wave complexes, were also frequently seen. The area where the ictal discharges initially occurred or were most prominent was the temporal area, suggesting the limbic origin of apneic seizures. In more than half of the cases, the sleep cycle was abolished. In those cases where the sleep cycle was preserved, the seizures occurred most frequently in active sleep, but never in quiet sleep.

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