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April 1983

Behavioral Symptoms in Temporal Lobe Epilepsy

Author Affiliations

New England Deaconess Hospital 110 Francis St Boston, MA 02215

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1983;40(4):467-468. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1983.01790040121020

To the Editor.—  A recent report by Mungas, "Interictal Behavior Abnormalities in Temporal Lobe Epilepsy" (Archives 1982;39:108-111) refers extensively to a study conducted by Fedio and myself.1 I would like to comment on several points that Mungas raised.First, despite the critical stance of his paper, the author presented further evidence of the frequent occurrence of behavioral symptoms in temporal lobe epilepsy. This is entirely in agreement with our findings and certainly distinguishes limbic epilepsy from neurologic conditions such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis or myasthenia gravis, in which consistent behavioral changes are not found.In the study performed by Fedio and myself, patients were drawn from outpatient epilepsy clinics with no preselection for psychiatric disorder. Yet, in addition to their elevated trait scores on our inventory, 30% of the patients were found to have undergone psychiatric hospitalization. Among the 14 temporal lobe epileptics tested by Mungas, five were distinctively violent,

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