Frequently asked questions

Is epileptic encephalopathy fatal?

Infants with some types of EE are at a greater risk of premature death than infants who don’t have EE, but that depends on the type they have and any other underlying conditions.

Is epileptic encephalopathy curable?

Research into the treatment of EE is ongoing, but the condition is not usually curable. Depending on the type, treatment can help reduce symptoms and improve development. However, EE is associated with loss of neurologic function over time.

Is epileptic encephalopathy genetic?

Yes, it can be. Some forms of EE have been linked to inherited genetic changes and random genetic mutations.


The takeaway

EE is a group of conditions characterized by severe seizures that cause brain injury and cognitive and behavioral delays. Treating these seizures may help improve development. However, some types of EE may not respond well to antiepileptic medications.

EE occurs mainly in babies and young children but can also occur in adults. Individuals with EE will likely need lifelong care and treatment.


Source:, Deborah L. Nurmi, MS, Heidi Moawad, MD