Vitamin B1

Supplements and Brain Swelling.

Clinical Study Title:
Early diagnosis of pediatric Wernicke's encephalopathy.

Plain English Summary:
Encephalopathy, or brain swelling, in Wernicke's area can be fatal if it goes untreated. It is also often not diagnosed in children. This study examined the rate of encephalopathy in children and how to identify it early enough and treat it. A review was done across the literature, and a total of 31 cases were reviewed. A total of thirteen of these patients died before the correct diagnosis was made. Another 16 were completely recovered with thiamine supplementation. The high rate of death prior to the diagnosis supports that it is not diagnosed often enough. Thiamine supplementation is a safe treatment for this disorder, and should be administered to anyone showing signs of Wernicke's encephalopathy.
George S. Chin CN
Department of Pediatrics, Hospital Universitario Antonio Pedro, Universidade Federal Fluminense, Brazil.
Country of Publication
United States
Pediatric Neurology. 20(4):289-94, 1999 Apr.

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