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Journal of Epilepsy and Clinical Neurophysiology

Print version ISSN 1676-2649

Abstract

DE PAOLA, Luciano et al. Clinical features of Psychogenic Nonepileptic Seizures (PNES): analysis of a Brazilian series. J. epilepsy clin. neurophysiol. [online]. 2006, vol.12, n.1, pp. 37-40. ISSN 1676-2649.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1676-26492006000100008.

RATIONALE: An estimate of 3 million people present with the diagnosis of epilepsy in Brazil. Psychogenic Nonepileptic Seizures (PNES) are likely to occur in up to 2-33/100.000 people. Paradoxically, very few papers address this significant condition in the Brazilian literature. We describe a Brazilian PNES population and provide a review of the literature. METHODS: we reviewed the clinical history, vídeo-electroencephalographic (VEEG) data, psychiatric diagnosis and prognosis in a series of 45 PNES patients, with emphasis on the demographics, as well as, PNES major clinical presentations and classification. RESULTS: PNES represent 5.2% of the patients referred to the VEEG monitoring at our institution; patients were mostly young with a mean age of 27y/o and a clear predominance of the female gender (78%); the majority of PNES last between 1-5 minutes, but duration was highly variable; 28/45 patients were referred due to "intractable epilepsy" and 14/28 had MR defined mesial temporal sclerosis; about a third of the patients present with the classically described PNES clinical presentation; conversive and dissociative seizures prevail on PNES classification (80%). CONCLUSIONS: clinical and VEEG data on this Brazilian population matches descriptions coming from other series, suggesting potential cross-cultural similarities in the clinical expression of this condition.

Keywords : psychogenic nonepileptic seizures; nonepileptic seizures; pseudo-seizures.

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