There are many causes of infantile spasms; almost any brain abnormality or brain injury can cause them. More than 50 genetic/metabolic diseases are associated with infantile spasms, and many patients have other disorders that cause developmental delays (e.g., cerebral palsy, Down syndrome, tuberous sclerosis, etc.)
Is it normal for my baby to have spasms?
Babies may have as many as 100 spasms a day. The seizures may be more likely to happen just as the baby is waking up. Infantile spasms most often begin between 4 and 7 months, but can start any time in the first few years of life. Later onset spasms may also occur but are rare.
How do I know if my baby has infantile spasms?
Symptoms of Infantile Spasms (IS)
- Raise their arms over their head or stick their arms straight out to the side.
- Stiffen their legs or “tuck them into the belly,” as if having stomach pain.
- Suddenly bend at the waist.
- Drop or bob their heads briefly.
- Roll their eyes back suddenly with subtle head nodding.
What is an infantile spasm?
Infantile spasms (IS), also called West Syndrome, is a rare type of epilepsy in children. This syndrome is considered an epileptic encephalopathy or severe brain disorder. Without early treatment, IS can cause problems with your child’s: Cognition. Learning.
Can infantile spasms go away?
Infantile spasms usually stop by age five, but may be replaced by other seizure types. Many underlying disorders, such as birth injury, metabolic disorders, and genetic disorders can give rise to IS, making it important to identify the underlying cause. In some children, no cause can be found.
What does seizure look like in baby?
Generalized convulsing is rarely seen in infants. Instead, focal seizures and epileptic spasms are more common. A spasm can be as subtle as upward eye deviation or brief stiffness in the baby’s back. More pronounced signs may include the baby’s arms coming up with a slight head nod and their eyes rolling up.
What are the signs to look for in neurological symptoms in infants?
Neonatal Neurological Disorder Symptoms
- Decreased level of consciousness.
- Abnormal movements.
- Feeding difficulty.
- Changes in body temperature.
- Rapid changes in head size and tense soft spot.
- Changes in muscle tone (either high or low)
When should I worry about baby twitching?
Jitters or trembling of the arms and legs during crying is normal in newborns. It should stop by 1 to 2 months of age. If your baby is jittery when not crying, it could be abnormal.
Do babies cry when they have infantile spasms?
They may have many series of spasms per day. This type of seizure is usually only seen in young children. After a spasm, the baby may cry or laugh. The spasms do not cause pain, but the baby may cry because the quick jerking movement surprises them.
What happens if infantile spasms are left untreated?
Left untreated, infantile spasms can lead to serious outcomes, including an estimated infant mortality rate of between 5% and 6%. The most significant concern, however, is that infantile spasms are associated with autism and intellectual deficits that permanently affect quality of life.
What is the best treatment for infantile spasms?
Treatment of infantile spasms has little class I data, but adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), prednisolone and vigabatrin have the best evidence as first-line medications. Other therapies including the ketogenic diet and other anti-epileptics medications may also prove useful in the treatment of infantile spasms.
Do babies with infantile spasms sleep more?
It is common for babies who have infantile spasms to become irritable and to go off their feeds. Their sleep pattern also changes in that they may sleep more during the day and less during the night.