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עמוד בית
Sat, 20.07.24

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November 2013
S. Menascu, U. Kremer, Y. Schiller, I. Blatt, N. Watemberg, M. Boxer, H. Goldberg, I. Korn-Lubetzki, M. Steinberg, and B. Ben-Zeev
 Background: The management of intractable epilepsy in children and adults is challenging. For patients who do not respond to antiepileptic drugs and are not suitable candidates for epilepsy surgery, vagal nerve stimulation (VNS) is a viable alternative for reducing seizure frequency.

Methods: In this retrospective multicenter open-label study we examined the efficacy and tolerability of VNS in patients in five adult and pediatric epilepsy centers in Israel. All patients had drug-resistant epilepsy and after VNS implantation in 2006–2007 were followed for a minimum of 18 months. Patients were divided into two age groups: < 21 and > 21 years old.

Results: Fifty-six adults and children had a stimulator implanted in 2006–2007. At 18 months post-VNS implantation, none of the patients was seizure-free, 24.3% reported a reduction in seizures of ≥ 75%, 19% reported a 50–75% reduction, and 10.8% a 25–50% reduction. The best response rate occurred in patients with complex partial seizures. Among these patients, 7 reported a ≥ 75% reduction, 5 patients a 50–75% reduction, 3 patients a 25–50% reduction, and 8 patients a < 25% reduction. A comparison of the two age groups showed a higher reduction in seizure rate in the older group (< 21 years old) than the younger group.

Conclusions: VNS is a relatively effective and safe palliative method for treating refractory epilepsy in both adults and children. It is an alternative treatment for patients with drug-resistant epilepsy, even after a relatively longed disease duration, who are not candidates for localized epilepsy surgery.

April 2012
A. Achiron, B.-Z. Garty, S. Menascu, D. Magalashvili, M. Dolev, B. Ben-Zeev and O. Pinhas-Hamiel
Background: Multiple sclerosis (MS) occurs in young adults and infrequently appears in childhood.

Objectives: To determine the incidence of MS and describe the clinical, cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) findings at onset MS in children in Israel.

Methods: Incidence and case-specific data were obtained through the MS Center Database and Israeli Health Statistics Census Data over 15 years, from 1995 to 2009, and compared between patients with childhood (< 12 years), juvenile (> 12 years, < 18 years) and adult (> 18 years) onset MS.

Results: Of 1129 eligible MS patients, we identified 10 (0.89%) with childhood-onset MS, 74 (6.55%) with juvenile-onset MS, and 1045 (92.56%) with adult-onset MS. There were 0 to 3 incident childhood cases/year, leading to an annual incidence of 0.1/100,000 among Israeli children the incidence of juvenile and adult MS was 2.6 and 5.4/100,000, respectively. Neurological presentation among children with MS was optic neuritis, motor weakness or brainstem involvement. CSF oligoclonal immunoglobulin (IgG) were positive in 62.5%. The most frequent MRI finding was the occurrence of ¡Ý 3 periventricular white matter lesions followed by corpus callosum lesions, with 71% co-occurrence. Cervical and thoracic lesions occurred in 33% and 43%, respectively. Time to second neurological event ranged from 0.3 to 4.2 years and none of the patients with childhood MS reached EDSS=6.0 within a mean follow-up period of 8.4 years.

Conclusions: Childhood-onset MS is rare, with an incidence of 0.1/100,000 Israeli children. Childhood MS does not differ significantly from juvenile and adult-onset MS in terms of clinical, laboratory and imaging findings.
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