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Continuous Spike-Wave during Slow Wave Sleep and Related Conditions.


Continuous spike and wave during slow wave sleep (CSWS) is an epileptic encephalopathy that presents with neurocognitive regression and clinical seizures, and that demonstrates an electroencephalogram (EEG) pattern of electrical status epilepticus during sleep, as defined by the Commission on Classification and Terminology of the International League Against Epilepsy 1989. CSWS is an age-related condition, typically presenting in children around 5 years of age, with clinical seizures which progress within 2 years to a severe epileptic encephalopathy. The pathophysiology of CSWS is not completely understood, but the corticothalamic neuronal network involved in sleep patterns is thought to be involved. Genetic predisposition and injury in early development are thought to play etiological roles. Treatment strategies have involved traditional anticonvulsants, hormonal therapies, and other newer techniques. Outcomes are fair, and the thought is that earlier diagnosis and intervention preserve neurocognitive development, as in the case of other epileptic encephalopathies. Further understanding of the mechanisms of CSWS may lead to improved therapeutic options and thus outcomes of children with CSWS.

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