Cardiac autonomic dysfunction is linked to sudden unexpected death in epilepsy

Takeaway

  • Many people who died from sudden unexpected death in epilepsy had an abnormal cardiac autonomic response to hyperventilation-induced sympathetic stimulation.

Why this matters

    There is a need for predictive biomarkers that identify individuals at high risk of sudden unexpected death in epilepsy. This novel study is the first to highlight the potential value of changes in heart rate during hyperventilation as a biomarker of increased risk of sudden death.