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August 1986

Predicting Posttraumatic Epilepsy in Penetrating Head Injury

Author Affiliations

From the Physical Science Laboratory, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Md (Dr Weiss); and the Vietnam Head Injury Study, Walter Reed Army Medical Center, Washington, DC (Drs Salazar, Vance, Grafman, and Jabbari).

Arch Neurol. 1986;43(8):771-773. doi:10.1001/archneur.1986.00520080019013

• Using data derived from a 15-year follow-up study of 520 veterans surviving penetrating brain wounds received in the Vietnam war, we have developed a predictive formula and tables for posttraumatic epilepsy based on time elapsed postinjury and presence of specific clinical and computed tomographic scan risk factors. Such patients remain at some increased risk for epilepsy even ten to 15 years postinjury, although most can be 95% certain of avoiding epilespy if they have been seizure free for three years posttrauma. Epilepsy onset latency was independent of any risk factors identified.

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