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Paed Epilepsy – improves mental well-being

Evidence Summary
• In a case control study of 107 children, 48 with idiopathic epilepsy and 59 healthy matched controls, there was a significant correlation in the distance covered in a 6-minute walk test and mental well-being that was not present in controls. There was also a significant negative correlation between participation in school sport and both mental well-being and self-esteem (1).

Quality of Evidence
• B/C – Low quality
Strength of Recommendation
Grade 2 – weak recommendation

• Physical activity can be recommended in children with epilepsy to improve fitness and mental well-being. However, the evidence is from a small number of case control studies and therefore a weak recommendation is given relating specifically to children with epilepsy.
• There is however ample evidence in the literature linking physical fitness to improved mental wellbeing in general population children. Further research specifically into children with epilepsy may reveal a similar association, but at the moment evidence is lacking. (2)
• No harm or adverse events were found in children with epilepsy who took part in the physical activity within this study


  1. Rauchenzauner et al; Quality of life and fitness in Children and Adolescents with Epilepsy (Epifit). Neuroepileptics 2017; 48:161-165.
  2. UK Chief Medical Officer’s Physical Activity Guidelines, September 2019.


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