Abstract

A STUDY OF THE VARIED AETIOLOGY AND CLINICAL PRESENTATION OF NEW ONSET SEIZURES IN POSTPARTUM PERIOD

Author(s): Ravindra Kumar Sudarsi1, Aruna Ratikrinda2

BACKGROUND
Seizures in the postpartum period are the major cause of mortality and morbidity. A variety of neurological disorders causing seizures may be encountered during pregnancy and puerperium. These disorders may be unrelated to pregnancy (e.g. Meningitis) or peculiar to pregnancy (e.g. Eclampsia) or. Pregnancy may affect the course of the pre-existing neurological disorders such as epilepsy. So, keeping in mind the varied aetiology of postpartum seizures and its response to appropriate treatment, our study has been conducted to find out the most common causes in our setup to guide the optimal therapy.
AIM OF THE STUDY To study the varied aetiology and clinical presentation of new onset seizures in the postpartum period over a period of two years.
MATERIALS AND METHODS 50 patients who developed first episode of seizures in postpartum period (that is after delivery to 6 weeks) admitted to Osmania General Hospital on random selection. All women complaining of new onset seizure with in postpartum period up to 6 weeks. All those women who are known epileptics and who had seizures in the antenatal period were excluded from the study. The selected patients were studied in detail with history and physical examination.
RESULTS Different causes for first episode of seizures in postpartum period are enlisted here. Cavernous sinus thrombosis in 17 patients, late postpartum eclampsia accounted for 13 patients, intracranial haemorrhage in 6 patients, ischaemic stroke in 5 patients, posterior reversible encephalopathy syndrome in 4 patients, CNS infections in 6 patients, glioma in 1 patient, viral hepatitis in one patient, idiopathic in 3 patients.
CONCLUSIONS
Cavernous sinus thrombosis and late postpartum eclampsia constitute the major aetiology of first onset of seizes occurring in the postpartum period.