Epilepsy Severity Is Associated With Head Circumference and Growth Rate in Infants With Tuberous Sclerosis Complex

TACERN Study Group

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Abnormal brain growth in tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC) reflects abnormalities in cellular proliferation and differentiation and results in epilepsy and other neurological manifestations. Head circumference (HC) as a proxy for brain volume may provide an easily tracked clinical measure of brain overgrowth and neurological disease burden. This study investigated the relationship between HC and epilepsy severity in infants with TSC. Methods: Prospective multicenter observational study of children from birth to three years with TSC. Epilepsy data were collected from clinical history, and HC was collected at study visits at age three, six, nine, 12, 18, 24, and 36 months. Epilepsy severity was classified as no epilepsy, low epilepsy severity (one seizure type and one or two antiepileptic drugs [AEDs]), moderate epilepsy severity (either two to three seizure types and one to two AEDs or one seizure type and more than three AEDs), or high epilepsy severity (two to three seizure types and more than three AEDs). Results: As a group, children with TSC had HCs approximately 1 S.D. above the mean World Health Organization (WHO) reference by age one year and demonstrated more rapid growth than the normal population reference. Males with epilepsy had larger HCs than those without. Compared with the WHO reference population, infants with TSC and no epilepsy or low or moderate epilepsy had an increased early HC growth rate, whereas those with severe epilepsy had an early larger HC but did not have a faster growth rate. Conclusions: Infants and young children with TSC have larger HCs than typical growth norms and have differing rates of head growth depending on the severity of epilepsy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)26-32
Number of pages7
JournalPediatric neurology
StatePublished - Jul 2023


  • Epilepsy
  • Growth curve
  • Head circumference
  • Tuberous sclerosis complex

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Neurology
  • Developmental Neuroscience
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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