What are Infantile Spasms (IS)?

Infantile Spasms (IS) are a medical emergency. 

Infantile spasms are a rare, but very serious type of seizure. Infantile spasms are caused by a condition in a baby’s brain and include repetitive, but often subtle movements—such as jerking of the mid-section, dropping of the head, raising of the arms or wide-eyed blinks. IS can be misdiagnosed as colic, reflux, or a startle reflex.

Prompt diagnosis and treatment are critical, but this is challenging because infantile spasms can be mistaken for normal baby movements or other disorders that don’t demand urgency.

Infantile spasms is a rare and particularly severe epilepsy syndrome that typically begins within the first year of life. Infantile spasms is characterized by subtle seizures which can have large neurological effects, potentially leading to developmental delays and cognitive and physical deterioration.

Sadly, many primary care doctors and parents alike are not familiar with the signs and symptoms of infantile spasms. So, many children with infantile spasms do not receive treatment during the critical window within the weeks and months after the emergence of symptoms.

That’s why it’s critical for everyone to know the signs to STOP Infantile Spasms.

STOP Infantile Spasms

Read one mother’s story – as it appeared in Newsweek – about her child’s diagnosis with Infantile Spasms at 4 months old.

Learn more by visiting the Infantile Spasms Action Network (ISAN) website.
Epilepsy Alliance America is a proud member of the Infantile Spasms Action Network (ISAN) – a collaborative network of 30+ national and international entities dedicated to raising awaress for IS.  ISAN is convened by Child Neurology Foundation.