Friday, January 18, 2008

Benign Paroxysmal Torticollis, or BPT, is NOT Epilepsy

Although children with BPT exhibit seizure like activity, with arm, leg, head or other movements described as shaking, jerking, or limbs extending and contracting, I am not aware of any BPT diagnosed child actually having epilepsy or showing any sign of abnormalities on a variety of tests, including lab work, MRI's, Cat Scans, etc. in the brain.

Also, I am not aware of any BPT patient in contact with me or in the medical literature that has shown any benefit to being on anti-seizure medications. The cause of the BPT is unknown and these medicines are treating a known cause that doesn't exist in these children. Usually after a trial of several months without improvement of the BPT symptoms, the parent decides to discontinue the medicines and realizes, thankfully, that it must be something else medically. Remember, most Doctors have never seen or read about BPT, as very few documented cases have been published and followed for the length of the BPT to resolution. Dr. Snyder did this in 1969 and most recent articles use his publication as a reference and quality study.

Epilepsy can be diagnosed, in my experience, more easily and only then should these potentially dangerous (on major organs) medicines be given to infants. Even more important for the child's future is that a misdiagnoses of epilepsy could haunt this child in adulthood when found in their medical records when it comes to insurability, and possibly employment for certain jobs. These comments and opinions I offer from my own research and experience with BPT and working in the medical field ( not as a physician) my whole career. Please use them as a guide to develop your own perspective and conclusions.

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