Psychological Non Epileptic Seizures
Northeast Regional Epilepsy Group

Invited poet-Brittney “The Mourning Light”

Several times a year, this blog invites writers who live with PNES to share their writings.  This month, we have a moving poem submitted by Brittney. My name is Brittney, I’m 30, a member of the PNES support group, and I cannot work due to multiple conditions. I wrote the poem below in July when I was in patient at a mental health hospital where I had 3 spells in 10 days. It was my first stay at such a place...

Prolonged exposure therapy for the treatment of patients diagnosed with psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (PNES) and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

We’d be hard pressed to find a clinician or researcher who doesn’t agree that the proper treatment for a confirmed diagnosis of psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (PNES) or non-epileptic attack disorder (NEAD-as it is called in the UK) is some form of psychotherapy.  Although, we’ve known this for decades, we’re still sorely uncertain as to which psychotherapeutic treatment modalities are not just most...

Hatred: the fuel in some psychogenic seizures?

Today’s blog is the result of a profound series of conversations I recently had with someone.  We were talking about a harmful emotion that can result from experiencing abuse: Hatred. Hatred is different than anger.  Anger is an emotion.  It is, like all other emotions; it’s neither right or wrong nor good or bad.  It simply is.  In fact, anger serves an important purpose. It signals that something is...

I have psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (PNES) but was never traumatized: Is this you?

In July 2013, we published an article in the Journal Epilepsy and Behavior looking at: Psychological trauma in patients with psychogenic nonepileptic seizures: Trauma characteristics and those who develop PTSD.  The full article can be found here: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1525505013001819). We found that 45 out of 61 (73.8%) patients reported experiencing at least one traumatic event in...

Are all patients diagnosed with psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (PNESs) the same? Patients with PNES and PTSD are looking different.

What unites patients with PNES into a single category? The fact that they have abnormal behaviors and changes in consciousness that resemble an epileptic seizure, but that are in fact non-epileptic as per EEG? However, right about there is where the similarity ends. To bunch all of PNES patients into one bag and hope to treat them without considering intra-group and individual differences makes about as much...

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