Severe malaria in children in areas with low, moderate and high transmission intensity in Uganda. (33/148)

OBJECTIVES: Age and transmission intensity are known to influence the manifestations of severe falciparum malaria in African children. However, it is unclear how specific clinical features such as seizures, impairment of consciousness, or respiratory distress vary with the parasite load and transmission intensity. We examined how the peripheral parasite load varies with transmission intensity and how this influences the symptoms and manifestations of severe malaria in children under 5 years in three areas with different malaria transmission intensity across Uganda. METHODS: We consecutively recruited 617 children with severe malaria presenting to three hospitals in areas with very low (51), moderate (367) and very high (199) transmission intensities and compared the age, admission parasite density and proportions of patients with different manifestations of severe disease. RESULTS: The median age (months) was inversely proportional to transmission intensity and declined with rising transmission (26.4 in very low, 18.0 in moderate and 9.0 under very high transmission). The highest proportion of patients reporting previous malaria admissions came from the area with moderate transmission. The geometric mean parasite density (18,357, 32,508 and 95,433/microl) and the proportion of patients with seizures (13.7%, 36.8% and 45.7%, P < 0.001) from very low, moderate and very high transmission respectively, increased with rising transmission. A linear increase with transmission was also observed in the proportion of those with repeated seizures (9.8%, 13.4% and 30.2%, P < 0.001) or impaired consciousness (7.8%, 12.8% and 18.1%, P = 0.029) but not respiratory distress. The proportion of patients with severe anaemia (19.6%, 24.8% and 37.7%, P = 0.002) mirrored that of patients with seizures. CONCLUSIONS: These findings suggest that heavy Plasmodium falciparum parasitaemia may be important in development of seizures, severe malarial anaemia and impaired consciousness in children under 5 years of age but may not be important in the development of respiratory distress.  (+info)

Relationship between regional cerebral metabolism and consciousness disturbance in traumatic diffuse brain injury without large focal lesions: an FDG-PET study with statistical parametric mapping analysis. (34/148)

BACKGROUND: The cerebral metabolism of patients in the chronic stage of traumatic diffuse brain injury (TDBI) has not been fully investigated. AIM: To study the relationship between regional cerebral metabolism (rCM) and consciousness disturbance in patients with TDBI. METHODS: 52 patients with TDBI in the chronic stage without large focal lesions were enrolled, and rCM was evaluated by fluorine-18-fluorodeoxyglucose positron emission tomography (FDG-PET) with statistical parametric mapping (SPM). All the patients were found to have disturbed consciousness or cognitive function and were divided into the following three groups: group A (n = 22), patients in a state with higher brain dysfunction; group B (n = 13), patients in a minimally conscious state; and group C (n = 17), patients in a vegetative state. rCM patterns on FDG-PET among these groups were evaluated and compared with those of normal control subjects on statistical parametric maps. RESULTS: Hypometabolism was consistently indicated bilaterally in the medial prefrontal regions, the medial frontobasal regions, the cingulate gyrus and the thalamus. Hypometabolism in these regions was the most widespread and prominent in group C, and that in group B was more widespread and prominent than that in group A. CONCLUSIONS: Bilateral hypometabolism in the medial prefrontal regions, the medial frontobasal regions, the cingulate gyrus and the thalamus may reflect the clinical deterioration of TDBI, which is due to functional and structural disconnections of neural networks rather than due to direct cerebral focal contusion.  (+info)

Treatment of neurological complications in isolated ACTH deficiency by glucocorticoid replacement. (35/148)

The neurophysiological complications in ACTH deficiency have not been well documented. In this paper, we present a patient with isolated ACTH deficiency who developed various neurological signs. The neurophysiological abnormalities, including slow wave activity on electroencephalogram, delayed conduction velocity of the peripheral nerves and low amplitude of muscle action potentials, were improved by replacement of glucocorticoid. These findings suggested that glucocorticoid is directly involved in the function of the peripheral and central nervous systems.  (+info)

Prognosis of status epilepticus: role of aetiology, age, and consciousness impairment at presentation. (36/148)

BACKGROUND: Identification of outcome-predictive factors could lower risk of under- or over-treatment in status epilepticus (SE). Older age and acute symptomatic aetiology have been shown to predict mortality, but other variables are controversial and level of consciousness has received relatively little attention. The objective of this study was to assess variables predictive of mortality, particularly those available at presentation. METHODS: The discharge database (1997-2004) of two university hospitals was screened for adult patients with EEG confirmed SE, excluding cerebral anoxia. Outcome at discharge (mortality, return to baseline clinical conditions) was analysed in relation to demographics, clinical features, and aetiology. Aetiologies were also classified based on whether or not they were potentially fatal independently of SE. RESULTS: Mortality was 15.6% among 96 patients with a first SE episode, 10 of whom also experienced recurrent SE during the study period. Eleven other patients had only recurrent SE. Mortality was 4.8% among these 21 patients with recurrent SE. Return to baseline condition was more frequent after recurrent than incident SE (p=0.02). For the first SE episode, death was associated with potentially fatal aetiology (p=0.01), age>or=65 (p=0.02), and stupor or coma at presentation (p=0.04), but not with gender, history of epilepsy, SE type, or time to treatment>or=1 h. CONCLUSIONS: At initial evaluation, older age and marked impairment of consciousness are predictive of death. Surviving a first SE episode could lower the mortality and morbidity of subsequent episodes, suggesting that underlying aetiology, rather than SE per se, is the major determinant of outcome.  (+info)

Recovery of consciousness after epileptic seizures in children. (37/148)

OBJECTIVE: To investigate the duration of postictal impairment of consciousness and the factors that affect it. PATIENTS AND METHODS: 90 children aged 1-16 years (37 male, 53 female, median age 6 years), attending the accident and emergency department, and inpatients of Leeds General Infirmary, Leeds, UK, who had experienced seizures involving impairment of consciousness. Interventions-hourly modified paediatric coma scores were determined, until a coma score of 15 was obtained. Linear regression analysis was used to determine the factors influencing recovery time. RESULTS: 49 children were excluded owing to incomplete coma scoring, lost notes and refusal of consent. Median time for full recovery of consciousness was 38 min (0.63 h, range 0.05-17 h). Median recovery time was 18 min (0.3 h, range 0.05-9 h) from febrile seizures, which was significantly shorter than for seizures of other aetiologies (p<0.05), 1.35 h (range 0.07-13.13 h) from idiopathic seizures, 1.25 h (0.07-12.1 h) from remote symptomatic seizures and 4.57 h (0.25-17 h) from acute symptomatic seizures. Median recovery time after the use of benzodiazepines was 3.46 h (range 0.08-14.25 h), and was significantly longer (p<0.05) than for seizures not treated with benzodiazepines (median 0.47 h, range 0.05-17 h). Age, sex, seizure type and duration did not significantly affect recovery time. CONCLUSIONS: Most children experiencing febrile seizures recover within 30 min. An acute symptomatic aetiology should be considered if recovery takes >1 h.  (+info)

Mimics of childhood stroke: characteristics of a prospective cohort. (38/148)

BACKGROUND: Little is known about the clinical features and spectrum of diagnoses in children with "stroke mimics," those with acute neurologic deficits but without cerebrovascular diseases. OBJECTIVES: Our goal was to describe patients with stroke mimics and to determine if clinical features predict benign diagnoses. METHODS: Our stroke consult team registered a prospective consecutive cohort of 143 patients with acute presentations suspicious for cerebrovascular disease from November 2003 to November 2004. Cases in which stroke was ruled out (stroke mimics) were reviewed for clinical features and diagnostic test results and were classified "benign" if there was no structural brain lesion and there was an expectation of complete recovery. RESULTS: Of the 143 cases evaluated for suspected stroke, 30 (21%) had stroke mimics. Presenting signs included seizure (n = 11), headache (n = 9), mental status change (n = 6), focal weakness (n = 14), and focal sensory change (n = 7). Eleven patients had "benign" diagnoses (3 migraine, 3 psychogenic diagnoses, 3 musculoskeletal abnormalities, 1 delirium, and 1 episodic vital sign changes). Nineteen patients had "not-benign" diagnoses (3 reversible posterior leukoencephalopathy syndrome, 3 neonatal seizures, 2 vascular anomalies, 2 inflammatory disease, 2 intracranial infection, 2 epilepsy, 2 metabolic stroke, 1 tumor, 1 drug toxicity, and 1 idiopathic intracranial hypertension). Except for the presence of seizures, there were no significant differences in presentation or risk factors between benign and not-benign cases. CONCLUSIONS: Many disorders mimic childhood stroke. History and clinical presentation often do not distinguish the one third of patients with benign disorders from the two thirds with more serious problems, necessitating timely comprehensive investigations, especially brain MRI.  (+info)

Listerial meningitis in a patient with undiagnosed acquired immunodeficiency syndrome: ampicillin should be added to the empirical antibiotic coverage. (39/148)

Meningitis is an important differential diagnosis in patients with fever, headache, and/or altered consciousness in the emergency department (ED). With human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection becoming increasingly common, patients with acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) need to be recognised promptly to facilitate the choice of appropriate antibiotic therapy for potential opportunistic infections. Physicians should be able to recognise a patient with undiagnosed AIDS who presents to the ED and perform further confirmational tests without violating the rights of the patient. Additional tests focusing on discovering potential opportunistic pathogens should be performed. Ampicillin should be added to the empirical regimen for the coverage of Listeria meningocerebritis, which should be considered in all potentially immunocompromised hosts with suggestive clinical presentations. Failure to recognise patients with AIDS and provide antibiotics active against L monocytogenes in such hosts may lead to a catastrophic outcome.  (+info)

Adverse effects in children after unintentional buprenorphine exposure. (40/148)

Buprenorphine in sublingual formulation was recently introduced to the American market for treatment of opioid dependence. We report a series of 5 toddlers with respiratory and mental-status depression after unintentional buprenorphine exposure. Despite buprenorphine's partial agonist activity and ceiling effect on respiratory depression, all children required hospital admission and either opioid-antagonist therapy or mechanical ventilation. Results of routine urine toxicology screening for opioids were negative in all cases. Confirmatory testing was sent for 1 child and returned with a positive result. The increasing use of buprenorphine as a home-based therapy for opioid addiction in the United States raises public health concerns for the pediatric population.  (+info)