Heloise Helena Siqueira, Juliane Salter Dalbem, Regina Maria Papais Alvarenga, Maria Emilia Cosenza Andraus, Pierre Marie Preux


Objective: WHO estimates 8/1000 individuals worldwide suffer from epilepsy, and prevalence in developing countries is usually higher than that in developed countries. According to United Nations Program for Development in Human Development Report 2013, Brazil ranks 85th in Human Development Index with a course of “high performance” in human development over the past decades. Adequate sanitary conditions indirectly indicate higher educational and health levels. This study aimed to describe the prevalence of epilepsy in the Brazilian semiurban region of Mato Grosso. Methods: A door-to-door survey was conducted in a semiurban area of Barra do Bugres in 2011. In phase 1, health agents screened participants with the Limoges questionnaire, which is a validated method used to identify patients with epilepsy in tropical regions, and in phase 2, neurological evaluation was performed on detected cases. Results: Of the 30,132 subjects who were screened, 305 were deemed positive and were advanced to phase 2 evaluation. Epilepsy was diagnosed in 241 subjects (76 children and 165 adults). The prevalence of epilepsy was 7.8/1000 inhabitants, and the overall prevalence rate of active epilepsy was 5.6/1000 inhabitants. In this study, 55.9% were male, afro-descendant ethnicity was reported by 68.7% subjects, 24.4% were declared as illiterate, and 95.5% had toilets inside their house. Conclusion: The present study is the first conducted in a semiurban region of Brazil using a population survey to evaluate epilepsy prevalence rates. These findings suggested that the association between improvements in health conditions and education are important factors for low epilepsy prevalence rates.


Brazil; Epidemiology; Epilepsy; Prevalence; Population survey; Seizure

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Revista Brasileira de Neurologia e Psiquiatria. ISSN: 1414-0365