Landau-Kleffner Syndrome Information Page

Landau-Kleffner Syndrome Information Page


What research is being done?

The NINDS supports broad and varied programs of research on epilepsy and developmental disorders. This research is aimed at discovering new ways to prevent, diagnose, and treat epilepsy and developmental disorders and, ultimately, to find cures for them.

Information from the National Library of Medicine’s MedlinePlus
Aphasia

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What research is being done?

The NINDS supports broad and varied programs of research on epilepsy and developmental disorders. This research is aimed at discovering new ways to prevent, diagnose, and treat epilepsy and developmental disorders and, ultimately, to find cures for them.

Information from the National Library of Medicine’s MedlinePlus
Aphasia

The NINDS supports broad and varied programs of research on epilepsy and developmental disorders. This research is aimed at discovering new ways to prevent, diagnose, and treat epilepsy and developmental disorders and, ultimately, to find cures for them.

Information from the National Library of Medicine’s MedlinePlus
Aphasia


Definition
Definition
Treatment
Treatment
Prognosis
Prognosis
Clinical Trials
Clinical Trials
Organizations
Organizations
Publications
Publications
Definition
Definition

Landau-Kleffner syndrome (LKS) is a rare, childhood neurological disorder characterized by the sudden or gradual development of aphasia (the inability to understand or express language) and an abnormal electro-encephalogram (EEG).  Specifically, the EEG typcally shows an increase to nearly continuous abnormal brain activity firing (spikes) during sleep that scientists believe impair memory formation. LKS affects the parts of the brain that control comprehension and speech, typically affecting understanding rather than expression.

The disorder usually occurs in children between the ages of 5 and 7 years. Typically, children with LKS develop normally but then lose their language skills for no apparent reason. While many of the affected individuals have seizures, some do not. The disorder can be difficult to diagnose and may be misdiagnosed and should be recognized as different from the more common causes of autism, pervasive developmental disorder, hearing impairment, learning disability, auditory/verbal processing disorder, attention deficit disorder, childhood schizophrenia, or emotional/behavioral problems.

×
Definition

Landau-Kleffner syndrome (LKS) is a rare, childhood neurological disorder characterized by the sudden or gradual development of aphasia (the inability to understand or express language) and an abnormal electro-encephalogram (EEG).  Specifically, the EEG typcally shows an increase to nearly continuous abnormal brain activity firing (spikes) during sleep that scientists believe impair memory formation. LKS affects the parts of the brain that control comprehension and speech, typically affecting understanding rather than expression.

The disorder usually occurs in children between the ages of 5 and 7 years. Typically, children with LKS develop normally but then lose their language skills for no apparent reason. While many of the affected individuals have seizures, some do not. The disorder can be difficult to diagnose and may be misdiagnosed and should be recognized as different from the more common causes of autism, pervasive developmental disorder, hearing impairment, learning disability, auditory/verbal processing disorder, attention deficit disorder, childhood schizophrenia, or emotional/behavioral problems.

Treatment
Treatment

Treatment for LKS usually consists of antiseizure medications and corticosteroids, and speech therapy, which should be started early. A controversial treatment option involves a surgical technique called multiple subpial transection in which the pathways of abnormal electrical brain activity are severed.

×
Treatment

Treatment for LKS usually consists of antiseizure medications and corticosteroids, and speech therapy, which should be started early. A controversial treatment option involves a surgical technique called multiple subpial transection in which the pathways of abnormal electrical brain activity are severed.

Definition
Definition

Landau-Kleffner syndrome (LKS) is a rare, childhood neurological disorder characterized by the sudden or gradual development of aphasia (the inability to understand or express language) and an abnormal electro-encephalogram (EEG).  Specifically, the EEG typcally shows an increase to nearly continuous abnormal brain activity firing (spikes) during sleep that scientists believe impair memory formation. LKS affects the parts of the brain that control comprehension and speech, typically affecting understanding rather than expression.

The disorder usually occurs in children between the ages of 5 and 7 years. Typically, children with LKS develop normally but then lose their language skills for no apparent reason. While many of the affected individuals have seizures, some do not. The disorder can be difficult to diagnose and may be misdiagnosed and should be recognized as different from the more common causes of autism, pervasive developmental disorder, hearing impairment, learning disability, auditory/verbal processing disorder, attention deficit disorder, childhood schizophrenia, or emotional/behavioral problems.

Treatment
Treatment

Treatment for LKS usually consists of antiseizure medications and corticosteroids, and speech therapy, which should be started early. A controversial treatment option involves a surgical technique called multiple subpial transection in which the pathways of abnormal electrical brain activity are severed.

Prognosis
Prognosis

The prognosis for children with LKS varies. Some affected children may have a permanent severe language disorder, while others may regain much of their language abilities (although it may take months or years). In some cases, remission and relapse may occur. The prognosis is improved when the onset of the disorder is after age 6 and when speech therapy is started early. Seizures generally disappear by adulthood, and the distinctive epilepsy activity on EEG also tends to improve by that time.

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The prognosis for children with LKS varies. Some affected children may have a permanent severe language disorder, while others may regain much of their language abilities (although it may take months or years). In some cases, remission and relapse may occur. The prognosis is improved when the onset of the disorder is after age 6 and when speech therapy is started early. Seizures generally disappear by adulthood, and the distinctive epilepsy activity on EEG also tends to improve by that time.

Prognosis
Prognosis

The prognosis for children with LKS varies. Some affected children may have a permanent severe language disorder, while others may regain much of their language abilities (although it may take months or years). In some cases, remission and relapse may occur. The prognosis is improved when the onset of the disorder is after age 6 and when speech therapy is started early. Seizures generally disappear by adulthood, and the distinctive epilepsy activity on EEG also tends to improve by that time.

Definition

Landau-Kleffner syndrome (LKS) is a rare, childhood neurological disorder characterized by the sudden or gradual development of aphasia (the inability to understand or express language) and an abnormal electro-encephalogram (EEG).  Specifically, the EEG typcally shows an increase to nearly continuous abnormal brain activity firing (spikes) during sleep that scientists believe impair memory formation. LKS affects the parts of the brain that control comprehension and speech, typically affecting understanding rather than expression.

The disorder usually occurs in children between the ages of 5 and 7 years. Typically, children with LKS develop normally but then lose their language skills for no apparent reason. While many of the affected individuals have seizures, some do not. The disorder can be difficult to diagnose and may be misdiagnosed and should be recognized as different from the more common causes of autism, pervasive developmental disorder, hearing impairment, learning disability, auditory/verbal processing disorder, attention deficit disorder, childhood schizophrenia, or emotional/behavioral problems.

Treatment

Treatment for LKS usually consists of antiseizure medications and corticosteroids, and speech therapy, which should be started early. A controversial treatment option involves a surgical technique called multiple subpial transection in which the pathways of abnormal electrical brain activity are severed.

Prognosis

The prognosis for children with LKS varies. Some affected children may have a permanent severe language disorder, while others may regain much of their language abilities (although it may take months or years). In some cases, remission and relapse may occur. The prognosis is improved when the onset of the disorder is after age 6 and when speech therapy is started early. Seizures generally disappear by adulthood, and the distinctive epilepsy activity on EEG also tends to improve by that time.

What research is being done?

The NINDS supports broad and varied programs of research on epilepsy and developmental disorders. This research is aimed at discovering new ways to prevent, diagnose, and treat epilepsy and developmental disorders and, ultimately, to find cures for them.

Information from the National Library of Medicine’s MedlinePlus
Aphasia

Patient Organizations
American Speech-Language-Hearing Association(ASHA)
2200 Research Boulevard
Rockville
MD
Rockville, MD 20850
Tel: 800-638-8255
Epilepsy Foundation
8301 Professional Place East, Suite 200
Landover
MD
Landover, MD 20785-2353
Tel: 301-459-3700; 800-EFA-1000 (332-1000)
National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD)
55 Kenosia Avenue
Danbury
CT
Danbury, CT 06810
Tel: 203-744-0100; Voice Mail: 800-999-NORD (6673)
Patient Organizations