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Journal of the Korean Child Neurology Society 2005;13(2):187-194.
Published online November 30, 2005.
Comparative Analysis of Handedness and Footedness in Children with Epilepsy.
Sung Ryon Ahn, Sang Ook Nam
Department of Pediatrics, College of Medicine, Pusan National University, Busan, Korea. weareone@hyowon.pusan.ac.kr
Studies for handedness and footedness of patients with epilepsy are rare. Some studies suggest that left handedness is more common in children with injury in the left hemisphere, mental retardation and epilepsy. We analysed the correlation of handedness and footedness with epilepsy according to the cause of epilepsy and the site of brain lesion by comparing with a control group. METHODS: Subjects were 130 epileptic patients who visited the pediatric out-patient clinic of Pusan National University Hospital from June 2001 to August 2001. A control group was composed of 130 children without history of convulsion or neurologic problems. We let them carry out 10 items or answer the questions on the use of hands and feet. We defined handedness and footedness based on the number of the items carried out dominantly. We analyzed age, type of seizure, cause of epilepsy and site of brain lesions in the symptomatic group by reviewing their medical records. RESULTS: In 130 epileptic patients, left handedness and left footedness were 20.0% and 16.0%, respectively which are higher than 4.6% and 5.4% of the control group(P<0.05). There was statistically no difference between the idiopathic epilepsy group and the control group such as 8.9% and 8.9%. But left handedness in the symptomatic epilepsy group was 45.0% and left footedenss was 31.4%, which were significantly higher than those of the control group(P<0.05). According to the site of brain lesions in the symptomatic group, all the patients with abnormalities in the left hemisphere showed left handedness and 57.1% of the patients showed left footedenss. In cases of abnormalities in both hemispheres or diffuse brain lesions, left handedness was 25.9% and left footedness was 26.9%. The concordance rate of left handedness and left footedness was 66.7% (4/6) in the control group, 50.0%(4/8) in the idiopathic epilepsy group and 71.4%(10/14) in the symptomatic epilepsy group. CONCLUSION: Left handedness and footedness are more common in the epileptic patients than the control group. This is due to the high proportion of left handedness and left footedness in the symptomatic epileptic patients. Left handedness and footedness in children with epilepsy are much more related to the left side of brain lesions.
Key Words: Handedness, Footedness, Children, Epilepsy


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