Title: Low Zinc and Iron Status: A Possible Risk Factor For Febrile Seizure
Authors: Dr P. Lakshmi Kumari, Dr Sasmita Devi Agrawal
Introduction: The International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE) defines a febrile seizure as “a seizure occurring in childhood after one month of age associated with a febrile illness not caused by an infection of the central nervous system, without previous neonatal seizures or a previous unprovoked seizure, and not meeting the criteria for other acute symptomatic seizures.”1 Risk factors for febrile seizures include developmental delay, discharge from a neonatal unit after 28 days, day care attendance, viral infections, a family history of febrile seizures, certain vaccinations, and possibly iron and zinc deficiencies2,3,4,5 by their co-enzyme activity or ability to influence ion channels and receptors.
Objectives: To focus specifically on iron and zinc levels and their correlation to febrile seizure in patients between 06-60 months of age.
Materials and Method: The study was conducted in the Department of Paediatrics, Hi-Tech Medical College & Hospital, Bhubaneswar, Odisha, from November 2016 - October 2018.
Patients presenting with febrile seizures were considered as cases and patients presenting with fever without seizures were taken as controls. A proper history regarding the duration of fever, time of onset of seizure, type of seizure, duration of seizure, past & family history of convulsive disorder was obtained and a series of haematological workup was done. Serum ferritin &Serum Zinc levels were also estimated.
Results: The mean haemoglobin levels in cases and controls included in this study was 10.51 ± 1.38 and 11.20 ± 1.53 g/dl respectively. The mean corpuscular haemoglobin in cases and controls included in this study was 25.29 ± 4.01 and 24.39 ± 2.66 pg respectively. The mean serum ferritin in cases and controls included in this study was 25.88 ± 7.57 and 79.85 ± 61.98 ng/ml respectively . The mean serum zinc in cases and controls included in this study was 73.10 ± 44.31and 79.85 ± 61.98 mcg/ml respectively.
Moreover, there was statistical significance observed between haemoglobin, serum ferritin and serum zinc levels of cases and controls (p < 0.01).
Conclusion: The present study has shown that iron and zinc deficiency are few of the predisposing factors for simple and complex febrile convulsions thereby establishing the relationship between zinc deficiency and febrile seizures.
Keywords: Febrile seizure, serum zinc, iron status.