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Rev Neurol (Paris). 2010 May;166(5):523-7. doi: 10.1016/j.neurol.2009.10.021. Epub 2010 Jan 12.

[Clinical and EEG approach to the diagnosis of epilepsy in a population of old people with delusion].

[Article in French]

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Service de gériatrie à orientation psychiatrique, hôpital Bretonneau, 23, rue Joseph-de-Maistre, 75018 Paris, France.



Delusion symptoms often occur in old people; epilepsy is one of the main reasons behind these acute episodes. Current guidelines and recommendations from the Academy of Medicine have proposed a double clinical and electroencephalographic approach. Recently, a working group of French experts has issued an electro-clinical scale. The aim of our study was to compare the usual approach with the new one based on the electro-clinical score.


All EEG requests performed since December 2008 in Bretonneau Hospital for elderly people aged over 75 years for delusion syndromes were retained for this study.


One hundred and fifteen old patients from a geriatric-hospital (age 83.5+/-6.06 years) were included in this protocol. The classical diagnostic process yielded the diagnosis of epilepsy for 50 subjects. The electro-clinical scale confirmed the diagnosis of epilepsy in 30 patients and ruled it out in 29 patients.


This study underscores the importance of evidence-based medicine for the diagnosis of epilepsy in old people and points out the underuse of the new technical tool, EEG-monitoring, for the management of these patients.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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