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Benign Rolandic Epilepsy

Rolandic area of the brain


Benign rolandic epilepsy (BRE), also called benign partial epilepsy of childhood (BECT) is one of the most common types of epilepsy, accounting for more than one-third of all epilepsy cases. Onset of symptoms begins between the ages of 3 and 13 years and peaks during ages 7 to 8 years.

Symptoms begin with simple partial seizures affecting the face. This can cause drooling and the inability to speak, and may be followed by a convulsion. The seizures then generalize to tonic-clonic convulsions. Seizures commonly occur at night during sleep, but some patients may have only daytime seizures. Patients with BRE are otherwise healthy, and the seizures do not cause development problems.


Diagnosis involves a visit with an epilepsy doctor, a patient history, neurological exam, and other clinical tests, as well as neurodiagnostic testing such as EEG and MRI. BRE is characterized by focal seizures, meaning abnormal electrical brain activity occurs on only one side of the brain. So the EEG typically shows dramatic focal spikes in the centrotemporal region of brain.


EEG of benign rolandic epilepsy patient



The prognosis is favorable for patients with BRE. Most children (95 percent) outgrow their seizures by age 15. BRE is typically treated with anti-epileptic drugs, including Carbatrol® (extended released carbamazepine), Trileptal® (oxcarbazepine), and Neurontin® (gabapentin).

Drug information changes periodically. For the most updated information on drugs, visit www.drugs.com.

Last Update
July 2, 2012
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Last Update
July 2, 2012