Brain abnormalities caused due to any condition can give a rise to Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS). If you were to look at the basic characteristics of LGS, it’ll be:
- Multiple seizure types
- Distinguished brain-wave pattern
- Mental deficiency
In some cases, mental deficiency can range from small to deep cognitive damage. Usually, LGS onset is seen between the age group of 3 and 6. According to the common statistics of patients of LGS, it’s more prevalent in males than in females. Lennox-Gastaut syndrome is a rare condition and has a 0.3 percentage of occurrence in live births. It has been seen that 30 to 50 percent of children who suffer from LGS usually have a family history of juvenile spasms. It is a difficult to diagnose and treatment options are in scanty or difficult. Also, getting a control on seizures caused by LGS is very intermittent.
Common Characteristics Of Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome
Generally, LGS occurs in children between the age group of 2 and 6, but it may not be true for all and its onset can be before 2 years of age. The common characteristics shown by Lennox-Gastaut syndrome are:
- Frequent multiple seizures – Including tonic-clonic/grand mal seizures & myoclonic seizure attacks.
- Dizziness and loss of balance due to status epilepticus
- Spasms due to seizure episodes
- Slowdown of psycho-motor development
- Changes in behavior or behavior disorders
- Interictal occurring between seizures attacks or paroxysms
To diagnose Lennox-Gastaut condition is very difficult because of seizures episodes in-between. Doctors usually start by looking at the medical history of the patient and look for signs that occurs prior to seizures. The common signs that doctors look are mental impedance, hearing and visual damage and tuberous sclerosis. Apart from these signs, doctors insist on studying various brain-wave patterns taken through EEG’s. Video monitoring is also helpful to note down seizure episodes and see the brain-wave at different intervals post & prior to seizure attacks. Apart from brain tests, common blood and urine tests are also conducted to provide the correct diagnosis and thereafter the correct treatment.
Treatments for Lennox-Gastaut syndrome are difficult but few common ones are used to control seizure activities. Treatments may include:
- Seizure food diet that is ketogenic diet
- Vagus nerve stimulation
- Corpus callosotomy surgery
Sometimes, the combinations of above treatments are given to control the brain abnormalities and seizures attack. However, in most cases, it is very difficult to gain a control over children’s seizure activities caused by Lennox-Gastaut syndrome especially when there is a prevalence of a continuous seizure state. To control the repeated seizures, medicines such as rectal diazepam are advised by physician. Out of all these, ketogenic diet has proven to be more successful in controlling seizures with a combination of few medicines and treatments. Usually, children with LGS are treated with multiple drugs under close supervision to gain a control over seizures, if everything seems to fail.
Medical Marijuana For Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome
Medical marijuana has also showed some success as a treatment for Lennox-Gastaut syndrome. Few cases such as one published in journal-news website, has given hope for more experiments towards medical marijuana to control seizures. So, if your child is suffering with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS), you can take help from internet and other resources to find more treatments that can benefit your child.