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Psychopathology and seizure type in children with epilepsy

  • Steven Whitman (a1), Bruce P. Hermann (a1), Rita B. Black (a1) and Shaku Chhabria (a1)


Previous investigations have reported an increased rate of behavioural disorder in children with epilepsy. The role, if any, played by temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) in predisposing to psychopathology is unclear. In order to evaluate the relationship between seizure type and psychopathology, 35 children with TLE were compared with 48 children with primary generalized epilepsies (GE) on standardized measures of social competence, aggression and overall behavioural disorder via analyses of covariance. Additionally, Pearson correlations were computed in order to evaluate the relationships between psychopathology and several seizure and subject variables. It was found that the presence of TLE per se bore no relationship to aggression, social competence or overall behavioural disorder. Some specific subject- and seizure-related variables were found to be associated with increased aggression and behavioural dysfunction in children with TLE and the interpretation of these findings are related to the larger epilepsy/psychopathology literature. Finally, an alternative approach for studying the precursors of behavioural disorder in epilepsy is suggested.


Corresponding author

1Address for correspondence: Dr Steven Whitman, Center for Urban Affairs and Policy Research, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL 60201, USA.


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Psychopathology and seizure type in children with epilepsy

  • Steven Whitman (a1), Bruce P. Hermann (a1), Rita B. Black (a1) and Shaku Chhabria (a1)


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