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Epilepsy Behav. 2012 Dec;25(4):495-500. doi: 10.1016/j.yebeh.2012.09.041. Epub 2012 Nov 13.

Early screening and identification of psychological comorbidities in pediatric epilepsy is necessary.

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  • 1Division of Behavioral Medicine and Clinical Psychology, Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, Cincinnati, OH 45229, USA. shanna.guilfoyle@cchmc.org


Youth with epilepsy often have co-occurring psychological symptoms that are due to underlying brain pathology, seizures, and/or antiepileptic drug side effects. The primary study aim was to compare the psychological comorbidities of youth with new-onset epilepsy versus chronic epilepsy. Primary caregivers of youth with either new-onset (n=82; M(age)=9.9±2.9) or chronic epilepsy (n=76; M(age)=12.8±3.3) completed the Behavioral Assessment Scale for Children-2nd Edition. Compared to those with new-onset epilepsy, the chronic group had significantly higher depressive and withdrawal symptoms, as well as lower activities of daily living. A higher proportion of youth with chronic epilepsy exhibited at-risk/clinically elevated depressive symptoms and difficulties with activities of daily living compared to the new-onset group. Proactive screening in youth with epilepsy to ensure timely identification of psychological symptoms and to guide early psychological intervention is warranted.

Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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