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Pharmacologic Management of Neonatal Seizures

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Seizures are most often the only sign of a central nervous dysfunction in the neonate. Neonatal seizures are a symptom of a specific disease entity. The search for a cause of neonatal seizures should focus on perinatal history or acute metabolic changes in the neonate. There are four classifications of neonatal seizures: clonic, tonic, myoclonic, and subtle. Simultaneous electroencephalogram and video recording are tools to assist the practitioner in the evaluation of difficult-to-assess subtle behaviors. Although many seizures may be prevented by careful attention to metabolic changes and the neonate's overall condition, those that cannot be prevented may require pharmacologic treatment. First-generation antiepileptic drugs such as phenobarbital and phenytoin are still the first and second lines of therapy, even as questions concerning their limited clinical effectiveness and concern for potential neurotoxicity continue.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: July 1, 2015

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