Emotion recognition and social cognition ‘can be impacted by epilepsy’

Posted Jun 10 2014 in conditions related to epilepsy

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A new study has shed light on the potential issues with emotion recognition and social cognition that can sometimes affect patients with temporal lobe epilepsy.

Conducted by Charles University in Prague and published in the journal Epilepsy & Behavior, the research involved 30 patients and aimed to evaluate these social factors in pre- and postsurgical patients with unilateral refractory temporal lobe epilepsy.

It was observed that both emotion recognition and social cognition were impaired among the epilepsy patients, with performance in tests shown to be strongly dependent on intelligence level. Earlier age at epilepsy onset, longer disease duration and a history of early childhood brain injury also predicted social cognition problems.

The researchers also found that epilepsy surgery within the temporal lobe seems to have a neutral effect on patients’ performances in both metrics. However, there were a few individual patients who seem to be at risk of a postoperative decline, suggesting these factors should be monitored closely.

Temporal lobe epilepsy is the most common form of partial or localisation-related epilepsy. It is known to be associated with a higher risk of memory and mood difficulties in cases where the condition cannot be treated with antiepileptic drugs.

Posted by Steve Long