By Jacques Emmery, General Practitioner, “Order of Tarn’s doctors”’ vice-president
Long term, what is the future for children with FIRES? It is very rare to pull through without complications. The duration of the first phase determines how severe the consequences will be and, as a result, the long term future of these children who most often end up specialised institutes.
In a 2006 French research study on 14 children aged between 4 and 11 (Neuropaediatric department in Necker Hospital in Paris, Pr Dulac and Pr Nabbout), the first phase lasted between 5 and 9 days in 5 cases, between 17 to 30 days in 5 cases, and between 55 to 60 days in 4 cases. All 14 children experienced lasting consequences with an IQ less than 50, despite 4 cases where no damage to the hippocampus was seen. All of them present speech difficulties, from common incomprehension to complete loss of speech. All of them also have behavioural disorders, from simple mood disturbance to deep behavioural issues.
As this syndrome is so rare, research studies carried out in big institutes around the world are few and far between and the lack of case studies means that, at the moment, no specific research path can be defined.