Vascular determinants of epilepsy: The Rotterdam study

Xinhua Li, Monique M.B. Breteler, Martine C. De Bruyne, Harry Meinardi, W. Allen Hauser, Albert Hofman

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Purpose: To investigate the relation between vascular determinants and epilepsy in an elderly population. Methods: This is a cross-sectional, community-based, case-control study. The total study population was comprised of 4,944 subjects, 65 of whom had epilepsy which conformed to International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE) criteria. Vascular determinants that were evaluated included a history of stroke or myocardial infarction, peripheral vascular disease, hypertension, serum total cholesterol and left ventricular hypertrophy. Multivariate logistic regression analysis was used to calculate prevalence odds ratios (OR), adjusted for age and gender, as a measure of the strength of the associations. Results: A history of stroke was strongly associated with lifetime epilepsy (OR 3.3; 95% CI [Confidence Interval] 1.3- 8.5), as well as with late-onset epilepsy (OR 3.1; 95% CI 0.9-10.6). All vascular determinants were associated with lifetime epilepsy and late-onset epilepsy, with odds ratios >1. When stroke patients were excluded, the odds ratios were statistically significant for the relationships between total cholesterol and late-onset epilepsy (OR 1.3, 95% CI 1.0-1.6) and left ventricular hypertrophy and late-onset epilepsy (OR 2.9, 95% CI 1.0-8.6). Furthermore, presence of any of these vascular indicators was twice as common among subjects with late-onset epilepsy as compared with subjects without epilepsy (OR 2.0, 95% CI 0.9-4.2), and this was statistically significant when stroke patients were excluded (OR 2.1, 95% CI 1.0-4.7). Conclusions: These results suggest that there may be a relationship between vascular factors and the risk of late-onset epilepsy, apart from the relationship that exists through clinically overt stroke.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1216-1220
Number of pages5
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 1997
Externally publishedYes


  • Case control study
  • Epidemiology
  • Epilepsy
  • Risk factors
  • Vascular factors

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