What Are the Causes of Seizures in Infants?


Quick Answer

According to WebMD, seizures in infants can be caused by epilepsy, head injuries, certain illnesses, lack of oxygen and fever. The effects of seizures can be limited to the area of the brain in which they occur, or they can affect the whole body.

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Full Answer

According to Diana Kohnle of the New York University Department of Pediatrics, additional causes of infant seizures include electrolyte imbalance, meningitis, low blood sugar, brain abscesses, accidental poisoning and brain tumors. The reasons behind some infant seizures remain unknown, adds Kohnle.

According to eMedicine Health, seizures that are sparked off by fever are called febrile seizures. These have their roots in conditions that are accompanied by fever, such as chickenpox, colds and ear infections. Several risk factors contribute to increased chances of getting febrile seizures. Infants with previous episodes are at an increased risk of getting more seizures. Newborns with siblings or relatives who have suffered febrile seizures are more likely to fall victim to the condition, as are infants who develop at a decreased pace. Newborns who spend 28 days or more in neonatal care are also at an increased risk of getting febrile seizures.

Generally, infants get seizures within a month of birth, according to eMedicine Health. When undergoing a seizure, infants may smack their lips or temporarily stop breathing.

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