Electrographic Status Epilepticus Is Associated With Mortality and Worse Short-Term Outcome in Critically Ill Children*

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Objectives:Electrographic seizures and electrographic status epilepticus are common in critically ill children. We aimed to determine whether electrographic seizures and electrographic status epilepticus are associated with higher mortality or worse short-term neurologic outcome.Design:Prospective observational study.Setting:PICU of a tertiary children’s hospital.Patients:Non-neonatal children admitted to a PICU with acute encephalopathy underwent continuous electroencephalographic monitoring. Electroencephalographs were scored as 1) no seizures, 2) electrographic seizures, or 3) electrographic status epilepticus. Covariates included age, acute neurologic disorder category, prior neurodevelopmental status, sex, and electroencephalographic background category. Outcomes were mortality and worsening of pediatric cerebral performance category from preadmission to PICU discharge. Chi-square analysis, Fisher’s exact test, and multivariable logistic regression were used to evaluate the associations between electrographic seizures or electrographic status epilepticus and mortality or short-term neurologic outcome, using odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals.Interventions:None.Main Results:Two hundred children underwent continuous electroencephalographic monitoring. Eighty-four (42%) had seizures, which were categorized as electrographic seizures in 41 (20.5%) and electrographic status epilepticus in 43 (21.5%). Thirty-six subjects (18%) died, and 88 subjects (44%) had pediatric cerebral performance category worsening. In multivariable analysis, electrographic status epilepticus was associated with an increased risk of mortality (odds ratio 5.1; 95% confidence interval 1.4, 18; p = 0.01) and pediatric cerebral performance category worsening (odds ratio 17.3; 95% confidence interval 3.7, 80; p < 0.001), whereas electrographic seizures were not associated with an increased risk of mortality (odds ratio 1.3; 95% confidence interval 0.3, 5.1; p = 0.74) or pediatric cerebral performance category worsening (odds ratio 1.2; 95% confidence interval 0.4, 3.9; p = 0.77).Conclusions:Electrographic status epilepticus, but not electrographic seizures, is associated with mortality and worse short-term neurologic outcome in critically ill children with acute encephalopathy.

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