Psychological Non Epileptic Seizures
Northeast Regional Epilepsy Group

Why do Psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (PNES) become chronic for so many?

For the past year or so I have had a survey up on www.nonepilepticseizures.com homepage.  It asks: How long have you been suffering non-epileptic episodes? 109 responses were received.  Note that this is not a scientific survey that is based on those who wished to respond. Over 40% reported that PNES has been part of their life for over 5 years!  Thirty-seven percent reported that PNES has been part of their life...

Psychiatry and Psychology are dropping the ball when it comes to psychogenic non epileptic seizures

Dr. Selim Benbadis published an excellent editorial article in the Neuropsychiatry Journal this year in which he called out both the American Psychological and American Psychiatric Association for the absence of information about Psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (conversion disorders) they have on their sites. He pointed out that both associations have a plethora of mental health topics and diagnoses for which...

Could Prolonged Exposure (PE) therapy be useful in treating psychogenic non-epileptic seizures?

Up to 90% of patients with psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (PNES) report histories of significant trauma (often childhood sexual and physical abuse).  If we compare with control groups and the general US population, we find that in fact, patients with psychogenic non epileptic seizures have suffered more abuse than these other groups.   As for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), studies have reported...

Talking about psychogenic non epileptic seizures in Guadalajara, Mexico

Last week, I was invited to the Third International Neuropsychology conference in Guadalajara on Rehabilitation and Epilepsy. It gave me a wonderful opportunity to talk about a little known condition that is actually quite common in epilepsy centers: psychogenic non epileptic seizures.  The conference had drawn 500 attendees (psychology students, neuropsychologists and neurologists from all over Latin America). The...

Psychogenic non epileptic seizures: When life throws you a hurricane

These last two weeks have been stressful for anyone who lives in the Northeast (USA). Understandably, the news has been the main topic for all my patients with psychogenic seizures.  And I admit it, even this psychologist was rattled. Two earthquakes 5 days apart (note that our last earthquake was around 100 years ago), a 500 mile wide hurricane barreling towards New York City, flooding, the tenth anniversary of...

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