Dravet syndrome is a rare and lifelong form of epilepsy that begins in the first year of life with frequent and/or prolonged seizures. The early seizures often happen when the infant has a fever or high temperature. Previously known as Severe Myoclonic Epilepsy of Infancy (SMEI), it affects 1 in 15,700 individuals, 80% of whom have a mutation in their SCN1A gene. While seizures persist, other comorbidities such as developmental delay and abnormal EEGs are often not evident until the second or third year of life.
Common issues associated with Dravet syndrome include:
- Prolonged seizures
- Frequent seizures
- Behavioral and developmental delays
- Movement and balance issues
- Orthopedic conditions
- Delayed language and speech issues
- Growth and nutrition issues
- Sleeping difficulties
- Chronic infections
- Sensory integration disorders
- Disruptions of the autonomic nervous system (which regulates things such as body temperature and sweating).
For more information visit the Dravet Syndrome Foundation