Is it Possible to Diagnose Pseudoseizures (Non-epilepticPsychogenic Seizures) by Dissociative Experience Scale (DES)?

Authors: J. Preiss;  Z. Vojtěch 1;  T. Haas 1 2
Authors‘ workplace: Neurologické oddělení NsP Na Homolce, Praha, přednosta prim. MUDr. M. Kalina1 Ústav biofyziky 1. LF UK, Praha, přednosta prof. ing. M. Rakovič, DrSc. 2
Published in: Čes. a slov. Psychiat., , 2004, No. 4, pp. 197-203.


The authors of the present study try to verify the validity of the Dissociative Experience Scale, DES,(Bernstein, Putnam, 1986) for differentiation of epileptic and non-epileptic psychogenic seizures(NES). Their results are based on the epileptological assessment of the neurological departmentmonitoring unit. In the sample of 60 patients, 37 patients were epileptics, 12 cases were NES, 5patients as both epileptic and NES and in 6 cases the evidence is for the time being inconclusive.Within the framework of the neuropsychological investigation the patients carried out DES, andin the majority of cases personality methods were also used (Washington Psychosocial SeizureInventory – WPSI, and the Czech methods SUPOS and DSF) as well as cognitive methods (WAIS-R,WMS-R). The mean total DES score was in epilepsy patients 15.59 ± 15.99, median 10.43. In the NESgroup 18.75 ± 16.03, median 23.80. Values DES > 25, considered as a prove of dissociation were in 16%epilepsy patients and in 42% NES group. The differences are statistically nonsignifi cant.Increased values od DES were signifi cantly connected with unpleasant subjective feelings and states,with worse emotional adaptation, with lower education, lower intelligence functioning and lowermemory functioning.The positive fi nding of dissociative symptomatology occurs also in patients with undoubted epilepticseizures. To diagnose NES by results of DES is not appropriate. DES of course can be helpful indetection of patients with considerable personal and psychosocial diffi culties, for whom professionalhelp is desirable.

Key words:
epilepsy, non-epileptic seizures, dissociation, assessment, neuropsychology, DissociativeExperience Scale (DES).

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Addictology Paediatric psychiatry Psychiatry
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