Introduction: A febrile seizure (FS) occurs in 2-4% of children aged 6 months to 5 years. A simple febrile seizure is the most common seizure in children. According to the evidence, both genetic and environmental factors affect the occurrence of this condition. The purpose of this study was to determine the association between zinc deficiency and sociological factors, and febrile seizures.
Methods: This case-control study evaluated 136 children at 22 Bahman Hospital of Gonabad, Iran, from July 2015 to March 2018. We selected 36 children aged 6 months to 5 years with febrile seizures as the case group and 100 febrile children without a seizure, in the same age range, as the control group. The demographic characteristics, place of residence, family history of seizures, and zinc serum level were recorded, and data were analyzed by frequency, average, and standard deviation, and Chi-square statistical tests. The odds ratios were calculated by logistic regression with a 95% confidence level. SPSS version 22.0 was used for statistical analysis.
Results: Totally, 38.8% of the cases with FS and 5.0% of the febrile children without seizure had a zinc deficiency. The serum zinc level in the case group was 75.44 ± 16.98 µgr/dL and in the control group was 100.27 ± 24.23 µgr/dL (P < 0.001). The odds ratio of zinc deficiency in the patients with FS compared to the febrile children without convulsion was 1.069 (1.045-1.151).
Conclusion: Children with FS are more susceptible to have zinc deficiency than those febrile but without a seizure. Therefore, zinc deficiency could be a preventable and treatable risk factor for FS.