July 30, 2020

Do Interictal EEG Findings Reflect Cognitive Function in Juvenile Myoclonic Epilepsy?

Abstract, published in Epilepsy & Behavior

Purpose: This study investigated the relationship between frontal lobe cognitive function and frontal focal electroencephalography (EEG) findings in patients with juvenile myoclonic epilepsy (JME).

Methods: The study enrolled 60 patients diagnosed with JME and followed at the Epilepsy Outpatient Clinic of the University of Health Sciences, Bak?rkoy Psychiatric Hospital, and 30 healthy volunteers. Demographic and clinical features were recorded. Frontal lobe cognitive functions were tested in both groups. Video-EEG recordings of patients with JME were evaluated. The presence and duration of generalized discharges, the presence and lateralization of focal findings, and the presence of generalized discharges during hyperventilation and photic stimulation were recorded during EEG. Cognitive function test results were compared between the two groups, and the relationship between the EEG findings and cognitive function was investigated.

Results: The study included 35 (58.3%) female and 25 (41.6%) male patients and 17 (56.7%) female and 13 (43.3%) male healthy controls. The mean ages of the group with JME and controls were 28.3 ± 8.6 (16-50) and 31.3 ± 7.9 (17-45) years, respectively. Patients with JME performed more poorly on the frontal lobe cognitive tests than controls (p < 0.05). Patients whose generalized discharges were longer than 1 s performed more poorly on tests evaluating attention and made more perseverative errors (p < 0.05). There was no significant correlation between the presence of focal EEG findings and the scores on frontal lobe cognitive functions tests in the group with JME (p > 0.05).

Conclusion: Frontal lobe cognitive functions are affected in patients with juvenile myoclonic epilepsy. The cognitive effects were more pronounced in patients with prolonged generalized discharges on EEG.

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