Ketogenic Diet Therapy for Epilepsy Associated With Aicardi Syndrome

Miguel A.Ramirez Sanchez, Mackenzie C. Cervenka, Stacey K. Bessone, Eric H. Kossoff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Introduction: Aicardi syndrome is a rare neurodevelopmental disorder associated with epilepsy in females. Ketogenic diet therapy represents a possible nonpharmacologic treatment in Aicardi syndrome patients. Methods: All patients with Aicardi syndrome seen at Johns Hopkins Hospital (Baltimore, MD) and Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital (St Petersburg, FL) treated with ketogenic diet therapy since 1994 were evaluated retrospectively. Results: Fifteen patients, ages 4 months to 34 years, were identified. Ten (67%) patients experienced a ≥50% seizure reduction after 3 months, with 3 (20%) having a ≥90% reduction. Only 1 patient was seizure-free for a short period of time. The number of drugs tried prior to ketogenic diet therapy initiation was correlated with ≥50% seizure reduction at 3 months, 5.8 vs 2.6 in responders versus nonresponders (P =.01). In addition, the mean number of drugs actively received also correlated, 3.0 vs 1.2, P =.005. Ketogenic diet therapy was slightly more successful in those without infantile spasms, 78% vs 50%, P =.33. Conclusion: Ketogenic diet therapy was helpful in Aicardi syndrome, although seizure freedom was rare. It was especially helpful for those who were more drug-resistant and did not have infantile spasms at ketogenic diet therapy onset.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1007-1010
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of child neurology
Issue number11
StatePublished - Oct 2021


  • Aicardi
  • diet
  • ketogenic
  • ketosis
  • seizures

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Clinical Neurology


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