Seizures and Children’s Outcomes after Stroke (SCOUTS) Study

Principal Investigator: Christine Fox

STATUS: Enrolling, Active


Injury to the brain when a child has a stroke can cause seizures right away or later after the brain heals (epilepsy). Epilepsy is one of the common problems that can result after ischemic stroke in a child. Children who have acute seizures (those that occur within one week of the stroke) are more likely to develop epilepsy later in childhood, with a total epilepsy incidence of 58% by 10 years after stroke. Inflammation and injury location are two potential links between acute seizures and later development of epilepsy after pediatric stroke.

The “Seizures and Children’s Outcomes after Stroke (SCOUTS)” study will gather information about seizures and stroke recovery from children who took part in one of two previous childhood stroke studies (the VIPS I and VIPS II studies). The new information we are collecting will help us understand how children recover after a stroke and why some children develop epilepsy. Our specific aims are: 

1. To determine the inflammatory signaling pathways activated by acute seizures using banked blood collected from children enrolled in VIPS II, validating preliminary work from the VIPS I cohort. 

2. To identify changes in inflammatory signaling pathways in children who later develop epielpsy. Epilepsy outcomes will be ascertained in both cohorts. Banked blood will be utilized to determine differential expression of analytes in those who develop epilepsy compared to those who do not.

3. To use lesion-symtom mapping and lesion-network mapping to identify the brain regions and functional networks associated with post-stroke epilepsy. Machine learning techniques will be used to integrate results from these three aims.

The “Seizures and Children’s Outcomes after Stroke (SCOUTS)” study is important because it will provide evidence for molecular and anatomic pathways associated with seizures and epileptogenesis. A rich dataset of longitudinal stroke outcomes will also be a legacy of the study. We will use this knowledge to give a more accurate prognosis about epilepsy after a child has a stroke and to plan future research for epilepsy prevention.