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Epilepsia. 2007;48 Suppl 9:17-9.

Psychosis in epilepsy patients.

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  • 1Department of Neurology, New York University School of Medicine, New York University Comprehensive Epilepsy Center, New York, New York, USA.


Epileptic psychoses reflect a fundamental disruption in the fidelity of mind and occur during seizure freedom or during or after seizures. The psychotic symptoms in epilepsy share some qualities with schizophrenic psychosis, such as positive symptoms of paranoid delusions and hallucinations. Psychotic syndromes in epilepsy are most common but not exclusively associated with temporal lobe epilepsy. De Novo psychosis following epilepsy surgery is rare. Forced normalization-psychosis associated with dramatic reduction of epileptiform activity or seizures is described in small series only. Ictal and postictal psychosis can be prevented with seizure control, but postictal and chronic interictal psychoses require multidisciplinary and psychopharmacologic management.

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