Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in children with epilepsy.
Forty-five children with major motor or psychomotor seizure disorders were treated with carbamazepine in place of sedative anticonvulsants (phenobarbital, primidone) because of chronic behavioral difficulties. A batter of measures believed to reflect attentional and perceptual abilities was administered initially and repeated 4 to 6 months later following the drug crossover. At the conclusion of the study, 37 of the 45 children were judged to be drug "successes"; that is, general alertness and attentiveness were improved, while seizures were adequately controlled. This study indicates that therapeutic regimens of carbamazepine are less likely to interfere with mental functions in children than are equivalent doses of sedative anticonvulsants.