Benign nocturnal alternating hemiplegia of childhood: two cases with positive evolution.

Frédéric Villéga, Fabienne Picard, Caroline Espil-Taris, Marie Husson, Véronique Michel, Jean-Michel Pedespan
Brain and Development. 2011-06-01; 33(6): 525-529
DOI: 10.1016/j.braindev.2010.08.008

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Benign nocturnal alternating hemiplegia (BNAH) of childhood is distinct from the
classic form of malignant alternating hemiplegia of childhood [1]. It is
characterized by hemiplegic attacks occurring exclusively during sleep [2]. It
can be misdiagnosed as migraine, nocturnal frontal lobe epilepsy, benign rolandic
epilepsy, Panayiotopoulos syndrome, or sleep-related movement disorder [1-4].
Only nine patients have been described to date, with typically, a normal
development [1,5-7]. In order to insist about the benignity of the affection, we
report two cases: a new three-year-old boy suffering from BNAH and a patient
already published to show positive evolution at fourteen years of age. BNAH is a
rare disorder but may be underdiagnosed. Making an early diagnosis can help to
describe to the parents the good prognosis without treatment.

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