Document Type : original article


1 Pediatric neurology department of medical university of Mashhad

2 Department of Pediatrics, Faculty of Medicine, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran

3 Pediatrics Department, Child Growth and Development Research Center, Research Institute for Primordial Prevention of Non-communicable Disease, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran

4 MSc of clinical psychology, Dr, Sheikh Hospital, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran


Background: There is insufficient information regarding whether epileptic manifestations, in the absence of seizures, contribute to the development of autism symptoms. Electroencephalography (EEG) is the most widely used tool for diagnosing epileptic brain activity. Despite the possibility of the simultaneous manifestation of epilepsy with autism, it cannot be accurately said that epileptic activity, in the absence of seizures, contributes to the emergence of autism symptoms. Therefore, it is important to investigate the prevalence of epileptic activity in non-epileptic people with autism. The purpose of this research was to examine the EEG of autistic patients without a history of clinical seizures to determine anomalies.
Method: The studied population consisted of children between 1 and 18 years of age with autism who had referred to the neurology clinic of the hospital and the neurology office in 2022. Cases with a history of clinical seizures were excluded from the study.
Results: A total of 50 children were studied. The results of 64% of EEG cases showed anomalies. A significant relationship was found between birth type and EEG result. As, in natural delivery, 77% of the results of EEG had anomalies (p=0.048). EEG results showed anomalies in 61% of people who did not have problems at birth and 71.4% of those who had problems at birth.
Conclusion: This study showed that a significant percentage of children with autism spectrum disorder and no history of clinical seizures have abnormal EEGs that should be investigated in terms of manifestations related to epilepsy.


  1. Nevison CD. A comparison of temporal trends in United States autism prevalence to trends in suspected environmental factors. Environmental Health. 2014; 13(1):1-6.
  2. Boutros NN, Lajiness-O’Neill R, Zillgitt A, Richard AE, Bowyer SM. EEG changes associated with autistic spectrum disorders. Neuropsychiatric Electrophysiology. 2015; 1(1):1-20.
  3. Weitlauf S, Mcpheeters ML, Peters B, Sathe N, Travis R, Aiello R, et al. Therapies for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder: Behavioral Interventions Update. Agency for Health care Research and Quality 2014.

4. Amiet C, Gourfinkel-An I, Bouzamondo A, Tordjman S, Baulac M, Lechat PH, et al. Epilepsy inautism is 

associated with intellectual disability and gender: evidence from a meta-analysis. Biol psychiatry 2008; 64(7): 577-82.

  1. MohammadiJahromi LS, Inaloo S, Raeesi H. Prevalence of Autism among Epileptic Children Referring to Imam Reza Clinic and Comparing to Control Group (Non Epileptic Children) During2013-2014. J Shahid Sadoughi Univ Med Sci 2017; 25(3): 162-70
  2. Canpolat M, Kumandas S, Poyrazglu HG, Gumus H, Elmali F, Per H. Prevalence and risk factors of epilepsy among school children in Kayseri City Center, in urban area in Central Anatolia, Turkey.Seizure 2014; 23(9): 708-16
  3. Bosl WJ, Loddenkemper T, Nelson CA. Nonlinear EEG biomarker profiles for autism and absence epilepsy. Neuropsychiatric Electrophysiology. 2017; 3(1):1-22.
  4. Milovanovic M, Grujicic R. Electroencephalography in assessment of autism spectrum disorders: a review. Frontiers in Psychiatry. 2021 Sep 29; 12:686021.
  5. Olejniczak P. Neurophysiologic basis of EEG. J Clin Neurophysiol. (2006) 23:186–9
  6. Barnea-Goraly N, Kwon H, Menon V, Eliez S, Lotspeich L, Reiss AL. White matter structure in autism: preliminary evidence from diffusion tensor imaging. Biol Psychiatry. (2004) 55:323–6.
  7. Santarone ME, Zambrano S, Zanotta N, Mani E, Minghetti S, Pozzi M, Villa L, Molteni M, Zucca C. EEG Features in Autism Spectrum Disorder: A Retrospective Analysis in a Cohort of Preschool Children. Brain Sciences. 2023; 13(2):345.
  8. Sharma V, Saini AG, Malhi P, Singhi P. Epilepsy and EEG abnormalities in children with autism spectrum disorders. Indian journal of pediatrics. 2022; 89(10):975-82.
  9. Chez MG, Chang M, Krasne V, Coughlan C, Kominsky M, Schwartz A. Frequency of epileptiform EEG abnormalities in a sequential screening of autistic patients with no known clinical epilepsy from 1996 to 2005. Epilepsy & Behavior. 2006; 8(1):267-71.
  10. Parmeggiani A, Barcia G, Posar A, Raimondi E, Santucci M, Scaduto MC. Epilepsy and EEG paroxysmal abnormalities in autism spectrum disorders. Brain and Development. 2010; 32(9):783-9.
  11. Hrdlicka M, Komarek V, Propper L, Kulisek R, Zumrova A, Faladova L, Havlovicova M, Sedlacek Z, Blatny M, Urbanek T. Not EEG abnormalities but epilepsy is associated with autistic regression and mental functioning in childhood autism. European child & adolescent psychiatry. 2004; 13:209-13.
  12. Ekinci O, Arman AR, Işık U, Bez Y, Berkem M. EEG abnormalities and epilepsy in autistic spectrum disorders: clinical and familial correlates. Epilepsy & Behavior. 2010; 17(2):178-82.
  13. Lee H, Kang HC, Kim SW, Kim YK, Chung HJ. Characteristics of late-onset epilepsy and EEG findings in children with autism spectrum disorders. Korean journal of pediatrics. 2011; 54(1):22.
  14. Alaimo H, Geller E, Mahalingam R, Rodriguez A, Goldberg R, Bojko A, Nadkarni M, Joshi P, Devinsky O. Ictal EEG in patients with autistic spectrum disorder and epilepsy. Epilepsy Research. 2020; 168:106482.