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Ebrahimi-Fakhari, Daniel; Mann, Lilian Lisa; Poryo, Martin; Graf, Norbert; Kries, Rüdiger von; Heinrich, Beate; Ebrahimi-Fakhari, Darius; Flotats-Bastardas, Marina; Gortner, Ludwig; Zemlin, Michael; Meyer, Sascha (2018): Incidence of tuberous sclerosis and age at first diagnosis: new data and emerging trends from a national, prospective surveillance study. In: Orphanet Journal of Rare Diseases, Vol. 13, 117
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Abstract

Background: Tuberous Sclerosis Complex (TSC) is a rare multisystem disorder. In 2012 diagnostic criteria for TSC were revised. However, data on the incidence of TSC are limited. Methods: Prospective, national surveillance study in Germany over a 2-year-period (03/2015-02/2017) using current revised criteria for TSC. Patients up to the age of 18 years with a new diagnosis of definite or possible TSC (clinical and/or genetic) were included. The aims of this study were 1) to generate up-to-date data on the incidence of definite or possible TSC, 2) to assess age at first diagnosis, and 3) to compare these data with previous epidemiologic data. Results: In total, 86 patients met inclusion criteria (definite or possible TSC) with a median age at diagnosis of 6 months (range: 5 months before birth -197 months of age). Among patients identified with features of TSC, 73.3% met criteria for definite diagnosis (median age: 7 months) and 26.7% met criteria for a possible diagnosis (median age: 3 months). 55.8% of patients were male. When excluding prenatally diagnosed patients, median age at diagnosis was 11 months with a range of 0 to 197 months. The 3 most common clinical features at diagnosis of TSC were central nervous system involvement in 73.3% patients (of these 95.2% experienced seizures), cutaneous involvement in 58.1% patients (with the most common lesion being hypomelanotic macules in 92%) and cardiac rhabdomyoma in half of the patients. Cardiac rhabdomyoma were detected by prenatal ultrasonography in 22.1% of patients. The presence of cardiac rhabdomyoma was associated with cardiac arrhythmias in 25.6% (about 13% of all diagnosed patients) in our cohort. The overall prevalence of seizure disorders was 69.8%. The annual incidence rate of TSC is estimated at a minimum of 1:17.785 live births. However correcting for underreporting, the estimated incidence rate of definite or possible TSC is approximately 1:6.760-1:13.520 live births in Germany. Conclusions: This is the first study that assessed prospectively the incidence rate of TSC in children and adolescents using the updated diagnostic criteria of 2012. This prospective surveillance study demonstrates a low age at first diagnosis (median:6 months), likely due to antenatal detection of cardiac rhabdomyoma. Early diagnosis bears the potential for implementing effective therapies at an earlier stage.