Sunday, February 04, 2007

Neuropsychology Abstract of the Day: Epilepsy

Devinsky J. A diary of epilepsy in the early 1800s. Epilepsy and Behavior, 2007 Jan 29; [Epub ahead of print].

97 Westview Road, Short Hills, NJ 07078, USA.

This article describes the diary of a man from 19th-century England (1829-1834) that documents the onset and course of his wife's epilepsy after a stroke. Her stroke produced aphasia and right hemiparesis, but her epilepsy was the diary's focus and caused the greatest concern. The diary documents the history of her epilepsy in detail. In addition to tonic-clonic seizures, she experienced frequent bouts of status epilepticus and complex partial seizures. The diary contains some of the earliest recorded descriptions of status epilepticus and its aftermath of delirium, mood disorder, and hysteria. It also offers some of the earliest and most detailed accounts of complex partial seizures. Bleeding by cupping was the only symptomatic or prophylactic treatment recorded. These aspects of the diary are presented, as are the historical perspectives on epilepsy, including early beliefs and stigmas, therapeutic remedies, and early European views of epilepsy.

PMID: 17267288 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

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