Comparison of neurodevelopmental, educational and adulthood socioeconomic outcomes in offspring of women with and without epilepsy: A systematic review and meta-analysis

Paolo Mazzone, Kirsty Mhairi Hogg, Christopher J Weir, Jacqueline Stephen, Sohinee Bhattacharya, Simone Richer, Richard F M Chin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Background: Adequate pre-pregnancy counselling and education planning are essential to improve outcomes for offspring of women with epilepsy (OWWE). The current systematic review and meta-analysis aimed to compare outcomes for OWWE and offspring of women without epilepsy (OWWoE).
Methods: We conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis. We searched MEDLINE, EMBASE, CINAHL, PsycINFO (database inception-1st January 2023), OpenGrey, GoogleScholar, and hand-searched journals and reference lists of included studies to identify eligible studies. We placed no language restrictions and included observational studies concerning OWWE and OWWoE. We followed the PRIMSA checklist for abstracting data. The Newcastle-Ottawa Scale for risk of bias assessment was conducted independently by two authors with mediation by a third. We report pooled unadjusted odds ratios (OR) or mean differences (MD) with 95% confidence intervals (95CI) from random (I2>50%) or fixed (I2<50%) effects meta-analyses. Outcomes of interest included offspring autism, attention deficit/hyperactive disorder, intellectual disability, epilepsy, developmental disorder, intelligence, educational, and adulthood socioeconomic outcomes.
Results: Of 10,928 articles identified, we included 21 in meta-analyses. OWWE had increased odds of autism (2 articles, 4,502,098 offspring) OR [95CI] 1·67 [1·54, 1·82], attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (3 articles, 957,581 offspring) 1·59 [1·44, 1·76], intellectual disability (2 articles, 4,501,786 children) 2·37 [2·13, 2·65], having special educational needs (3 articles, 1,308,919 children) 2·60 [1·07, 6·34]. OWWE had worse mean scores for full-scale intelligence (5 articles, 989 children) -6·05 [-10·31, -1·79]. No studies were identified that investigated adulthood socioeconomic outcomes.
Conclusions: Increased odds of poor outcomes are higher with greater anti-seizure medication burden including neurodevelopmental and educational outcomes. In fact, these two outcomes seem to be worse in OWWE compared to OWWoE, even if there was no ASM exposure during pregnancy, but further work is needed to take into account potential confounding factors.
Key words: Epilepsy, pregnancy, mother, child, outcomes
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)213-221
JournalSeizure - European Journal of Epilepsy
Early online date29 Feb 2024
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2024


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