People with epilepsy have been discouraged from participating in physical activity due to the fear that it will exacerbate seizures. Although the beneficial effect of aerobic exercise in people with epilepsy, little objective evidence regarding the intensity of exercise has been reported. We investigated the effect of incremental physical exercise to exhaustion in people with epilepsy. Seventeen persons with temporal lobe epilepsy and twenty one control healthy subjects participated in this study. Both groups were submitted to echocolordoppler and electrocardiogram at rest and during physical effort. None of patients reported seizures during physical effort or in the recovery period of ergometric test. Both groups presented physiological heart rate and blood pressure responses during the different stages of the ergometric test. Only few patients presented electrocardiography or echocardiography alterations at rest or during effort. In conclusion, this work suggests that physical effort to exhaustion is not a seizure-induced component.
epilepsy; exercise; ergometric test; seizure; patient; maximal physical effort