BACKGROUND: The World Health Organization (WHO) declared a global pandemic of Covid-19 on 11 March 2020. The lockdown caused a lifestyle changes: an increase in the use of mobile media devices (MMDs), sleep and psychiatric disorders, incorrect habits regarding food and physical activities. We investigate prevalence of admission for seizures at our emergency department (ED), during Italian lockdown, comparing with that of the same period of the previous year (2019), and the relationship with some lifestyle changes.
METHODS: In this observational study, patients (4-14 years) with seizures that accessed at our ED, during Italian lockdown, were eligible. Non-epileptic events and febrile seizures were excluded. We describe two groups: patients with new-onset seizures and not. Moreover, a questionnaire concerning use of MMDs and sleep habits was administered.
RESULTS: Fifty-seven patients were included; median age 8.03 years. Considering only paediatric medical emergencies, the prevalence of accesses for seizures was 2.6% (CI 95% 0.020-0.034), while the incidence was 0.94% (CI 95% 0.006-0.0149). There was a statistically significant difference with prevalence of previous years, χ2 102.21 (p = 0.0001). We also reported a difference in daily screen time (DST) (p = 0.001) and total sleep time (TST) (p = 0.045), in all population, between period pre- and during lockdown. A negative correlation between DST and seizures latency (Spearman's ρ -0.426, p = 0.038) was found. In the two groups, the results were partially overlapping.
CONCLUSIONS: During lockdown period, we assisted to an increase of accesses for seizures. It is conceivable that a sleep time change and/or higher MMD use could act as triggers for seizures.
|Number of pages||9|
|Publication status||Published - Dec 2020|
- Cell Phone Use/adverse effects
- Child, Preschool
- Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control
- Emergency Service, Hospital/statistics & numerical data
- Pandemics/prevention & control
- Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control