The phenomenology of multiple partial seizure-like symptoms without stereotyped spells: an epilepsy spectrum disorder?

R. J. Roberts, L. L. Gorman, Gregory P Lee, M. E. Hines, E. D. Richardson, T. A. Riggle, N. R. Varney

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

57 Scopus citations

Abstract

Consistent with previous reports by neuropsychiatrists, the results of the present investigation confirmed the existence of a neurobehavioral disorder characterized by the subjective experiencing of multiple cognitive, affective, and psychosensory phenomena similar to those associated with more classic partial seizure disorders. According to the literature, such patients typically respond favorably to anticonvulsants although they lack the customary motor manifestations of complex partial seizure (CPS) disorders and typically do not have stereotyped spells. This neuropsychiatrie syndrome has recently been termed epilepsy spectrum disorder (ESD). In the present study, 30 patients with ESD were matched with equal numbers of treatment-refractory CPS patients and normal controls. All subjects were administered a standardized interview consisting of 35 cognitive, affective, and psychosensory partial seizure-like symptoms. The results indicated that ESD patients endorsed significantly more partial seizure-like symptoms than did CPS patients and controls. Relatively low levels of symptom endorsement by an unmatched psychiatric comparison sample indicated that the high levels of symptom endorsement by ESD patients could not be attributed to the presence of psychiatric dysfunction per se. Analysis of responding to 'foil' items unrelated to partial seizures indicated that high levels of symptom endorsement by ESD patients did not merely reflect a deviant response. Although ESD patients seldom present themselves at tertiary care epilepsy centers, the study of such patients is likely to be of relevance to mainstream epileptology.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)167-177
Number of pages11
JournalEpilepsy Research
Volume13
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1992

Keywords

  • Complex partial seizures
  • Interview
  • Multiple partial seizure-like symptoms
  • Neuropsychiatry
  • Partial kindling
  • Phenomenology of epilepsy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology

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    Roberts, R. J., Gorman, L. L., Lee, G. P., Hines, M. E., Richardson, E. D., Riggle, T. A., & Varney, N. R. (1992). The phenomenology of multiple partial seizure-like symptoms without stereotyped spells: an epilepsy spectrum disorder? Epilepsy Research, 13(2), 167-177. https://doi.org/10.1016/0920-1211(92)90073-3