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Executive functions and psychiatric symptoms in drug-refractory juvenile myoclonic epilepsy

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Rhys ThomasORCiD


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Purpose: The pattern of executive dysfunction reported in juvenile myoclonic epilepsy (JME) resembles that of patients with cluster B personality disorders. This study examined whether executive dysfunction and maladaptive behavior reported in patients with JME are related. Method: Sixty patients with drug-refractory JME were administered tests of intellect, memory, and executive dysfunction. Anxiety, depression, personality traits, impact of epilepsy, and perceived cognitive effects of antiepileptic drugs were measured. Results: Half of the cohort exhibited moderate to severe anxiety symptoms. The patients performed most poorly on naming ability and inhibition switching. Duration of epilepsy exacerbated poor performance on inhibition switching. Females presented with pathological scores for neurotic and introvert traits and males for introvert traits. Abnormal personality traits and psychiatric disorders were associated with worse intellectual and executive functioning. People with extreme Eysenck Personality Scale - Brief Version (EPQ-BV) scores demonstrated the greatest level of executive impairment. Furthermore, the same degree of dysfunction was not seen in any individual with unremarkable EPQ-BV scores. Conclusion: This study indicates that specific patterns of executive dysfunction are related to maladaptive behavior in JME. Distinct behavioral patterns may be used to identify functional and anatomical differences between people with JME and for stratification to enable gene discovery. © 2014.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Walsh J, Thomas RH, Church C, Rees MI, Marson AG, Baker GA

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Epilepsy and Behavior

Year: 2014

Volume: 35

Pages: 72-77

Print publication date: 01/06/2014

Online publication date: 13/05/2014

Acceptance date: 31/03/2014

ISSN (print): 1525-5050

ISSN (electronic): 1525-5069

Publisher: Elsevier


DOI: 10.1016/j.yebeh.2014.03.026

PubMed id: 24820514


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