The death of any child is tragic. When the death is sudden and unexpected, it can seem especially incomprehensible. Henry was 4 years old when he died only a few weeks after his epilepsy diagnosis; his parents were devastated and never knew that death could occur; no physician had discussed the possibility with them. Henry was an otherwise healthy child, had a history of febrile seizures, and died in his sleep before his epilepsy workup was complete and before his medication was likely therapeutic. Since Henry’s death 8 years ago, together and independently, Henry’s parents, pediatrician, and neurologist have sought understanding and opportunities to advance awareness and prevention around epilepsy-related mortality. These efforts have launched a multidisciplinary partnership between Children’s National Health System and the University of Virginia to develop an educational research program to systematically raise provider and patient awareness of sudden unexpected (or unexplained) death in epilepsy persons...
Increasing Awareness of Sudden Death in Pediatric Epilepsy Together
POTENTIAL CONFLICT OF INTEREST: Mrs Lapham was on the board of Citizens United for Research in Epilepsy from March 2009 to September 2016; and Drs Gaillard, Sexter, and Berl have indicated they have no potential conflicts of interest to disclose.
FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE: The authors have indicated they have no financial relationships relevant to this article to disclose.
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Gardiner Lapham, William Davis Gaillard, Joanna Sexter, Madison M. Berl; Increasing Awareness of Sudden Death in Pediatric Epilepsy Together. Pediatrics February 2017; 139 (2): e20163127. 10.1542/peds.2016-3127
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