Benign myoclonic epilepsy in infancy is a rare syndrome in which brief bouts of generalized myoclonus occur during the first or second year of life.32,33 The infants do not have other seizure types.
The EEG typically shows generalized spike-waves occurring in brief bursts during the early stages of sleep.
Usually, these seizures are easily controlled with antiepileptic drugs and are limited to the first few years of life. Generalized tonic-clonic seizures may occur during adolescence, however. While many children do well from a development standpoint, some children with the disorder are impaired cognitively.
Reviewed and revised January 2004 by Gregory L. Holmes, MD, Dartmouth Medical School
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