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Ictal Electroencephalographic Characteristics of Nodding Syndrome: A Comparative Case‐Series from South Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda

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Nodding syndrome (NS) is a poorly understood form of childhood-onset epilepsy that is characterized by the pathognomonic ictal phenomenon of repetitive vertical head drops. To evaluate the underlying ictal neurophysiology, ictal EEG features were evaluated in nine participants with confirmed NS from South Sudan, Tanzania, and Uganda and ictal presence of high frequency gamma oscillations on scalp EEG were assessed. Ictal EEG during the head nodding episode predominantly showed generalized slow waves or sharp-and-slow wave complexes followed by electrodecrement. Augmentation of gamma activity (30-70 Hz) was seen during the head nodding episode in all the participants. We confirm that head nodding episodes in persons with NS from the three geographically distinct regions in sub-Saharan Africa share the common features of slow waves with electrodecrement and superimposed gamma activity. ANN NEUROL 2022;92:75-80.

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