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Interface Between Autism and Epilepsy

Interface Between Autism and Epilepsy


  • Sheffali Gulati
Date of Lecture
June 10, 2023
June 10, 2023
CPD/CME Credits

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Topic:Interface Between Autism and Epilepsy: When:on Saturday, June 10, 2023 0900hrs EST (USA/Canada): Speaker: Professor Sheffali Gulati, unravels the fascinating connection between autism and epilepsy in this ICNTN Lecture 

Interface between Autism and Epilepsy

The relationship between ASD and epilepsy is bi-directional and is strongly linked to intellectual disability (ID). The risk of developing ASD in children with epilepsy is highest in children with early onset seizures, with a high prevalence in children with infantile spasms. The risk of developing epilepsy in children first diagnosed with ASD is highest in those with ID. The prevalence of seizures in ASD increases with age. When epilepsy and ASD co-exist, they share pathophysiological mechanisms. In epilepsy with and without ID, social cognitive deficits are an important determinant of neurodevelopmental outcomes. Early recognition of social deficits is an important aspect of the comprehensive management of children with epilepsy. Treating the seizures in individuals with epilepsy and ASD is crucial but interventions that address social and cognitive deficits are necessary to maximize neurodevelopmental outcomes. Malformations in neurogenesis and neuronal migrations defects have been observed in both disorders. The genetic, molecular and anatomic pathways that lead to epilepsy, ASD and ID are overlapping.

Learning Objectives:

  • To know the disease prevalence: both epilepsy in autism and autism in epilepsy
  • To know the challenges in diagnosis of seizure in a child with autism and vice versa
  • To know the various common genetic conditions that predispose to both autism and epilepsy
  • To know the risk factors for epilepsy in autism and autism in epilepsy and their mimics
  • To know the treatment modalities for the overlap conditions

About the speaker

Sheffali Gulati (MD, FRCPCH (UK), FAMS, FIAP, FIMSA)​

Professor Sheffali Gulati co-founded South Asia's first DM Pediatric Neurology Program in 2004 and has directed it since April 2008. She pioneered pediatric neurology in India in academics, clinical care, patient education, research, advocacy, and public health.

Her work in this subject has garnered many international/national awards. National Women Bio-scientist Award (Senior Category) – DBT (2021–2022), National Award - Science & Technology”, DST 2021; 6th I C Verma Excellence 2018; Lifetime Achievement (2014), Academy of Pediatric Neurology, IAP; S. Janaki (Gold medal), NAMS 2016; Amrut Mody Unichem -2015, ICMR; Sheila Wallace Award (1st Indian), ICNA 2014; Atal Swasthya Bhushan Samman, 2019; 5 AIIMS Excellence Research Awards 2014–2020; ISNS Award, Japan 2011; Fellowship, McGill1990.

Professor Gulati pioneered autism services in North India and worked on screening/diagnosis, therapy, research (AI, VR, AR, BCI, AAC), and advocacy. She is INSAR's India Global Senior Leader and AOCN's India President. She is also faculty in charge of the Centre of Excellence and Advanced Research for Childhood Neurodevelopmental Disorders, AIIMS, New Delhi; National Guidelines Coordinator, AOPN; Executive Board Member and Co-Convenor, Pediatric Epilepsy Subsection, Indian Epilepsy Society; Editor, Autism, Sage Journals; and Adjunct Faculty, National Brain Research Centre (NBRC), New Delhi. She specializes in epilepsy, autism, neuromuscular illnesses, cerebral palsy, neuromodulation, and neurorehabilitation and has over 400 peer-reviewed papers. 



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