Epilepsy Articles – January 2019

EWCT brings you the latest news on epilepsy-related articles

  1. Psychogenic nonepileptic events are common–accounting for an estimated 20% or more of patients seeking medical care at comprehensive epilepsy centres. They resemble and are hard to distinguish from true epileptic seizures and are related to psychological factors rather than electrical disturbances in the brain. Since epilepsy is difficult to diagnose, individuals with psychogenic nonepileptic seizures are often assumed to have epilepsy and receive unnecessary testing and treatment, including powerful antiepileptic drugs.


  2. Switching the manufacturer of antiepileptic drugs is associated with higher risk of seizures: A nationwide study of prescription data in Germany. Lang et al, Ann Neurol 2018;84:918–925 In previously seizure‐free patients, switching the manufacturer of antiepileptic medications was associated with a higher risk for seizure recurrence. Our retrospective approach does not allow us to determine whether other changes in medical care at the same time could contribute to the recurrence. However, it would be prudent to avoid switching the manufacturer of anticonvulsants in seizure‐free patients.


  3. This is a really important video to watch if you are a woman of child-bearing age and are taking epilim. This video exposes UK government documents that were obtained concerning Sodium Valproate and the defect risk when taken during pregnancy and the worrying transgenerational link that will affect our grand children.

  4. Studies estimate that between 3% and 7% of people with epilepsy have social anxiety disorder, which can dramatically affect quality of life. A study from Colombia has found that nearly 3 in 10 people with epilepsy may have social anxiety.