Psychological Non Epileptic Seizures
Northeast Regional Epilepsy Group

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...

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...

New article on dissociation and depression in children with PNES compared to children with epilepsy

In June, our team (Myers, Trobliger, Bortnik, Zeng, Segal and Lancman) published: “Dissociation and other clinical phenomena in youth with psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (PNES) compared to youth with epilepsy” in the peer-reviewed journal Seizure: European Journal of Epilepsy. The article had some very interesting findings which I will discuss below. This paper compared 15 youth diagnosed with psychogenic...

New article: Long-term outcome in a sample of underprivileged patients with psychogenic nonepileptic seizures (PNES) living in Argentina

This month, researchers from Argentina (Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas, de la Universidad de Buenos Aires y del ENyS) together with Dr. Lorna Myers (Director, Psychogenic Non-epileptic Seizures Program at the Northeast Regional Epilepsy Group) published an article in the Epilepsy and Behavior Journal: “Long-term outcome in a sample of underprivileged patients with psychogenic...

New article highlight: “Quality of life and psychological dysfunction in traumatized and non-traumatized patients with PNES”

In March, our summer intern, Nadine Boesten, together with her supervisors Ben Wijnen and Lorna Myers published an article with the following title: “Quality of life and psychological dysfunction in traumatized and nontraumatized patients with psychogenic nonepileptic seizures (PNES).” This study aimed to examine whether there are distinct subgroups within those who have psychogenic non-epileptic seizures...

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