The Neuropsychiatry of Epilepsy

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Overview

Michael Trimble and Bettina Schmitz have assembled an international team of experts to review the most recent findings and explore the interface between epilepsy and behavior disorders. The authors discuss the classifications available and examine how adequate they are for defining the subtleties of behavioral changes in patients with neurological disorders. Coverage is broad-ranging, from related cognitive problems, biological underpinnings, and pseudoseizures, to clinical aspects and treatment issues. This timely book covers the practical implications of ongoing research, and offers both a diagnostic and management perspective.

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Editorial Reviews

Doody's Review Service
Reviewer: Amir Akhter, M.D.(University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine)
Description: This book covers the neuropsychiatric interface between epilepsy and associated psychiatric disorders. It is composed of contributions from international authors from Europe, the United States, and Japan.
Purpose: The purpose is to educate physicians treating epilepsy patients not only from a psychobiological perspective of various behavioral disorders seen in this group, but also different psychotherapeutic modalities, such as psychotherapy. The book meets its objectives of exploring the interface between psychopathology and epilepsy. The authors use recent studies to bring home their point, and allow the book to be very useful in understanding and properly treating these patients.
Audience: The book is written for medical students, residents, and all professionals treating epilepsy patients. I think it would be beneficial for medical professionals such as neurologists, psychiatrists, and neuropsychologists, but it is too technical for non-medically trained professionals.
Features: The book is divided into six parts ranging from the neurobiology of various behaviors to their clinical aspects associated with epileptic patients, e.g., cognitive, DSM-IV psychopathology, psychopharmacology, etc. The book is divided well based upon various topics. The table of contents and the index are well laid out and easy to use. The book goes beyond psychopharmacology to address issues related to epilepsy surgery, vagal nerve stimulators, psychosocial issues, and psychotherapeutic methods to treat psychiatric disorders. In addition, the book attempts to tackle the very difficult issue of pseudo-seizures and their implications to clinicians and patients. Finally, the use of psychotropic drugs in epileptic patients is addressed, which is important to clinicians. However, the definitions at times are not well delineated, e.g., differentiation between interictal psychosis, postictal confusion, chronic psychosis, and their clinical assessment and implications. There is not enough information on EEG, MRI or CSF correlation seen in epileptic patients with behavioral disorders, other than the panic disorder chapter. Also, The MRI studies reported were too technically oriented for the audience. In addition, some of the chapters appeared to read like a journal article where too much time was spent on methods, rather than just reporting the information. There is no chapter on quantitative EEG and its relation to behavioral disorders. Finally, the book is too complex for the non-medically oriented professional.
Assessment: The editors did an excellent job in putting together such a broad and complex topic for clinicians treating epilepsy patients. After reading the book one has a good understanding of the various neurobehavioral issues, complications, and the application in everyday practice. This book is a must for all neurologists, psychiatrists, and neuropsychiatrists involved in treating epileptic patients and their behavioral disorders. In comparison to Psychiatric Issues in Epilepsy: A Practical Guide to Diagnosis and Treatment by Ettinger and Kanner (Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2001), this book is not as extensive, but it is complementary. This book expands more on issues such as cognition (comorbidities and risks in epilepsy), and psychotherapy (an additional tool in the armamentarium in treating epileptic patients with psychiatric comorbidities).

3 Stars from Doody
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521005166
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 8/28/2002
  • Pages: 360
  • Product dimensions: 6.85 (w) x 9.72 (h) x 0.79 (d)

Meet the Author

Professor Trimble has been at the forefront of the developing field of neuropsychiatry for over 20 years. His special interest is in seizure disorders and he runs a research unit devoted to neuropsychiatry and behavioural neurology. Dob 20.5.46.

Bettina Schmitz is Senior Registrar and Head of the Epilepsy Research Group in the Department of Neurology at the Charité, Virchow-Klinikum, Humboldt University, Berlin, Germany. She qualified in medicine from the Free University in Berlin in 1986, and worked as a research fellow at the Institute of Neurology in Queen Square, London, before returning to Berlin in 1992 to take up a post as registrar in the Department of Psychiatry at the Free University. She qualified in psychiatry, psychotherapy and neurology. She completed her MD in 1989, her PhD in 1997. Dr Schmitz' research has focused on epilepsy. In 1991, while in London, she carried out grant aided research on the neuropsychiatric differentiation of frontal epilepsies. Dr Schmitz has written a number of papers and books on epilepsy, and regularly presents at national and international conferences on the subject. DOB 12.05.1960

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Table of Contents

List of contributors
1 Introduction 3
2 Neuropsychiatric disorders in epilepsy - epidemiology and classification 5
3 Limbic connectivity: anatomical substrates of behavioural disturbances in epilepsy 18
4 The psychiatry of idiopathic generalized epilepsy 41
5 Epilepsy and learning disorders 62
6 Subtle cognitive and behavioural effects of epilepsy 70
7 Aggression and epilepsy 81
8 Epilepsy and suicide: a neuropsychiatric analysis 107
9 Postictal psychoses, revisited 117
10 Dementia and epilepsy 135
11 The risk of cognitive decline in patients with refractory temporal lobe epilepsy 152
12 Behavioural and neuropsychological aspects of frontal lobe epilepsy 164
13 Epilepsy, dissociation and nonepileptic seizures 189
14 Psychobiology of psychogenic pseudoseizures 210
15 Epilepsy and panic disorder 226
16 The effects of antiepileptic drugs on behaviour 241
17 Antiepileptic drug treatment and epileptic seizures - effects on cognitive function 256
18 Psychiatric effects of surgery for temporal lobe epilepsy 266
19 Vagus nerve stimulation and mood 283
20 On the use of psychotropic drugs in patients with seizure disorder 299
21 The role of psychotherapy in the treatment of epilepsies 313
22 Choosing measures to assess quality of life (QOL) in epilepsy 323
Index 343
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