Psychological Non Epileptic Seizures
Northeast Regional Epilepsy Group

Shame and Psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (PNES): research topic?

A few weeks ago, I was contacted by one of the leaders in the field of research of Psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (PNES); he proposed a project to several professionals in the field of PNES focusing on a topic that is often overlooked not only in PNES but in many other conditions and a variety of clinical settings. He stated that he had the sense that this emotional state may play an important role in the...

Studying Emotion, Relationships, and Psychogenic Non-epileptic Seizures (PNES) at Arizona State University

This month’s blog post comes to us from sunny Arizona, more specifically, Dayana Villarreal, Graduate Student, Arizona State University. Below, you are invited to read about her current research project on PNES. She hopes you may decide to take an online survey that will be used to better understand the inner workings of PNES.   When I joined the emotion research lab at Arizona State University (ASU) as a...

How important is alexithymia in the treatment of psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (PNES)? (Post for clinicians)

Spoiler alert: Important in patients who have PNES and high alexithymia What is alexithymia? Basically, it is, not having words for emotions (a=not having, lexi=word, thymia=emotion) or in other words, having a hard time identifying and describing feelings. In psychology it is associated with two concepts: emotional knowledge (EK) and emotional regulation (ER). EK has to do with: 1) Being able to identify...

Face Masks: to wear or not to wear when you are living with psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (PNES) during the Covid-19 pandemic

In recent months, I have been asked by a few patients who have been diagnosed with PNES (dissociative seizures) whether it is safe to wear a mask with PNES. On one hand, it is becoming obligatory to wear masks in some states.  We have all seen those signs that say: “If you come into this store, you must wear a mask or you will not be served.” On the other, some patients have mentioned that wearing a mask...

Breaking news: Results of a major Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) Study for psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (dissociative seizures) just published

Recently, Goldstein et al published their results from a randomized CBT treatment versus “treatment as usual” (TAU) study in which treatment outcome in patients who had a history of dissociative seizures was compared (Goldstein et al., 2020). The study is the largest and most well-designed study to date. It included an initial 3-month observation period — during which patients were asked to keep a careful log...

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