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Neurology. 1998 May;50(5):1377-82.

Recurrent seizures may cause hippocampal damage in temporal lobe epilepsy.

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  • 1Department of Neurology, Kuopio University Hospital, Finland.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To investigate whether recurrent seizures cause hippocampal damage in temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE).

PATIENTS:

Eighteen patients with newly diagnosed cryptogenic TLE, 14 patients with chronic well-controlled cryptogenic TLE, 32 patients with chronic drug-resistant cryptogenic TLE, and 25 healthy subjects were studied.

MEASUREMENTS:

Hippocampal MRI volumetry and T2 relaxometry were used.

RESULTS:

Chronic drug-resistant patients with seizure focus in the left temporal lobe had an 18% smaller left hippocampus and chronic drug-resistant patients with seizure focus in the right temporal lobe had a 14% smaller right hippocampus than did the control group (p < 0.05). Chronic drug-resistant patients with seizure focus on the left side had longer T2 relaxation times in the body of the left hippocampus than did the control group (p < 0.001) and chronic drug-resistant patients with seizure focus on the right side had longer T2 relaxation times in the body of the right hippocampus than did the control subjects (p < 0.01). In all patients with a left seizure focus, the left hippocampal volume correlated inversely with the estimated total number of partial (r = -0.391, p < 0.01) or generalized (r = -0.312, p < 0.05) seizures the patient had experienced. The prolongation of the left T2 relaxation time in the body of the hippocampus correlated with the total number of both partial (r = 0.670, p < 0.001) and generalized (r = 0.481, p < 0.001) seizures and with the duration of TLE symptoms (r = 0.580, p < 0.001).

CONCLUSIONS:

In patients with cryptogenic epilepsy, recurrent seizures may cause damage to the hippocampus throughout the lifetime of the patient.

PMID:
9595990
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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