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Psychiatr Clin North Am. 2007 Dec;30(4):781-802.

Psychiatric aspects of epilepsy.

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  • 1Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine, Medical College of Wisconsin, 8701 Watertown Plank, Milwaukee, WI 53226, USA.


Patients who have epilepsy face many challenges resulting from their illness and have frequent psychiatric comorbidities. Recognition of these disorders is increasing and is having a positive impact on patients' quality of life. Recent recommendations about a new classification system for psychiatric disorders related specifically to epilepsy and based on the relationship of symptoms to seizures, antiepileptic medications, and EEG changes should further research and treatment. Especially insofar psychiatric syndromes specific to epilepsy can be identified, correlation of clinical phenomena with relatively well-understood pathophysiology in epilepsy will allow advances in the understanding of psychiatric illness. This progress should move the treatment of patients who have epilepsy toward a comprehensive biopsychosocial model that focuses on the whole person rather than simply on the disease process.

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