Diagnosis and Treatment of Alternating Hemiplegia of Childhood

Opinion statement

The diagnosis and treatment of patients with Alternating Hemiplegia of Childhood (AHC) and related disorders should be provided by a multidisciplinary team experienced with the spectrum of presentations of this disease, with its related disorders, with its complex and fluctuating manifestations, and with cutting edge advances occurring in the field. Involvement in research to advance the understanding of this disease and partnership with international collaborators and family organizations are also important. An example of such an approach is that of The Duke AHC and Related Disorders Multi-Disciplinary Clinic and Program, which, in partnership with the Cure AHC Foundation, has developed and applied this approach to patients seen since early 2013. The program provides comprehensive care and education directly to AHC patients and their families and collaborates with referring physicians on the care of patients with AHC whether evaluated at Duke clinics or not. It also is involved in clinical and basic research and in collaborations with other International AHC Research Consortium (IAHCRC) partners. The clinic is staffed with physicians and experts from Neurology, Cardiology, Child Behavioral Health, Medical Genetics, Neurodevelopment, Neuropsychology, Nursing, Physical and Occupational Therapies, Psychiatry, Sleep Medicine, and Speech/Language Pathology. Patients are seen either for full comprehensive evaluations that last several days or for targeted evaluations with one or few appointments.

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References and Recommended Reading

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Acknowledgements

This work was supported by Duke University and CureAHC funds. We would like to thank CureAHC for the funding of our laboratory and clinical research as well as for the partnership with them in AHC patient care. We thank the Irish and the Dutch AHC foundations for support of our lab research. We also would like to thank Melissa McLean, the Program research coordinator, the Iceland AHC Foundation, and all members of AHC and Related Disorders Multidisciplinary Clinic and Program at Duke as well as our partners in the International AHC Research Consortium (IAHCRC) and other researchers in the field. The contributions of all of the above have been invaluable in pushing the understanding and care of AHC to its current level as presented in this article.

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Correspondence to Mohamad A. Mikati MD.

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Melanie Masoud, Lyndsey Prange, and Jeffrey Wuchich declare no conflict of interest.

Arsen Hunanyan reports receiving salary from Cure AHC grant.

Mohamad A. Mikati reports grants from Cure AHC, the Dutch AHC and the Irish AHC foundations during the conduct of the study.

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This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.

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This article is part of the Topical Collection on Pediatric Neurology

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Masoud, M., Prange, L., Wuchich, J. et al. Diagnosis and Treatment of Alternating Hemiplegia of Childhood. Curr Treat Options Neurol 19, 8 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11940-017-0444-7

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Keywords

  • Alternating hemiplegia of childhood
  • Hemiplegia
  • ATP1A3
  • Treatment
  • Diagnosis
  • Flunarizine