Sudden death from hypoventilation during epileptic seizures

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Nelson DA and Ray CD (1996) Sudden death from hypoventilation during epileptic seizures. Ann Neurol 39:6 825–6.

Link to Article

Abstract: First Paragraph: The study by Johnson and colleagues proved that sudden death during bicuculline-induced status epilepticus in sheep did not occur from pulmonary edema. We raise two issues concerning this publication: (1) The above authors’ review of literature contains a minor misconception. (2) They made only brief mention of the limbic system as the mechanism of respiratory arrest and death during seizures.



  • This is a commentary on Johnston et al., criticizing the seizure-inducing stimulus as likely to have altered activity in many cortical and subcortical areas. Nelson and Ray contend that there is a poorly understood but intimate linkage between brainstem respiratory centers and limbic cortices.


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