Clinical Neuroscience

[Evaluation of general well-being in adults with therapy resistant partial epilepsy taking oxcarbazepine]

BALOGH Attila, SZENTESI Annamária, JÁNOSI István

NOVEMBER 30, 2010

Clinical Neuroscience - 2010;63(11-12)

[Aims - An open label, national, multicenter, observational study had been conducted to evaluate of psychological general well-being in adults with therapy resistant partial epilepsy taking oxcarbazepine in Hungary. The possibility was examined to differentiate the improvement of the psychic well-being caused by the better status of the seizure disorder or caused by the psychopharmacological effect of the oxcarbazepine (in the next: OXC). Methods - 528 patients were asked to fill the Hungarian validated version of Psychological General Well-Being Schedule (PGWB), English version created by Harold J. Dupuy in 1984, at the baseline visit and after 12- week long duration OXC therapy regim. Finally the data of 332 patients could be evaluated per protocol, biostatistical analysis was carried out. Results - Based on data of 332 patients (per protocol population) the OXC treatment significantly (p<0.0001) improved all items of PGWB in clinically well- controlled (responder) epileptic patients and improved affective markers of patients with uncontrolled epilepsy also. In case of patients suffering from uncontrolled epilepsy the increase of psychical wellbeing items score influenced by biological effects were higher than those influenced by external effects. Conclusions - It can be stated that the adopted PGWB test battery is reliable quantitative method to examine the psychological well-being of patients suffering from partial epilepsy. It was observed that OXC has significant psychopharmalogical effect besides the well-known anticonvulsive property among large Hungarian population of partial epileptic patiens. In case of OXC therapy the positive psychic effect of the successful anticonvulsive treatment and the stabilization property on the affectivity of epileptic patients significantly separates. The OXC has no indication for the treatment of psychiatric conditions.]



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Clinical Neuroscience

[Meeting of Hungarian Epilepsy League]


Clinical Neuroscience

[European Association of Young Neurologists and Trainees]

VARGA Edina Tímea, SZTRIHA László, RÓNA-VÖRÖS Krisztina

Clinical Neuroscience

[Special concerns in medical care of severely demented patients suffering from Alzheimer disease]


[While the expected life-time increases dementias will show a pandemic nature. Author analyses the special medical and social concerns of severe states of Alzheimer disease. Having introduced the epidemiologic, diagnostic data and forms of palliatíve therapies he concentrates on the hitherto unsolved problems of patients and caregivers. He belongs to the experts identifying the Alzheimer diseases as a forced aging process. Accepted the theory of L. Hayflick he evaluates the aging process in frame of an evolution model. He states that for aged human beings having already performed the task of reproduction further conditions of living circumstances and even that of death are no more programmed. This hypothesis may have a very negative content at the first sense. But the author rather considers the uncertainty of aging a positive message. He establishes that the occurrence of degenerative processes connecting the aging must be limited by preventive interventions far more efficient than the present possibilities. Concerning these steps we are still on the level of recommendations for preserving our general health and data of relevant science are quite contradictory. Although criteria of “healthy", “qualified” or “assumable” aging are getting defined, we still do not know exactly how we should live optimally and what should we do for this in different epochs of our life. Somatic and psychological parameters are lacking which would be able to signalize the actual level of the aging process in a given person. We, physicians, also do not have exact opinion on the level of severity of dementias at which the patient already lost his her features of personality and individuality on an irreversible way. We have no idea on the phase when the ratio of joy and suffer falls below the value of 1.0 because we still have no tool for its measure. The author pointed the necessity of acceptance of a new preventive attitude and application of new methods in the medical care of the forced or pathological aging, instead of the present approaches based on the “wait and treat” attitude. Because of the intensive increase of the patient population the identification and care of patients can be efficient with a much more involvement of the basic medical network. Financial background can be improved by new theoretical bases of criteria of the palliative treatments. But the direct professional programs can be planned after solution of the existing moral and social dilemmas.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Importance of hydrocephalus following severe brain injury during postacute rehabilitation]

DÉNES Zoltán, LANTOS Ágnes, SZÉL István, THOMKA Magdolna, VASS Mátyás, BARSI Péter

[Objectives - We report our experiences with hydrocephalus in early rehabilitation over a seven-year period. Method - Retrospective study in Brain Injury Rehabilitation Unit of the National Institute for Medical Rehabilitation, between 1 January 2002 and 31 December 2008. Results - At our institute in the last seven years, we treated 83 patients with secondary and six patients with primary hydrocephalus. The majority of hydrocephalus was of post traumatic origin (52) and remaining 23 following stroke (SAH, AVM, ICH) or brain operation (tumour - seven, and one cranioplasty), and all these patients had undergone ventricular shunt implantation. Mean age of patients was 36 (14-80) years. Hydrocephalus was diagnosed in our rehabilitation unit in 20 of 83 cases and the other patients were shunted before transfer to our unit. The median time point of shunting was 70 (range: 20-270) days after trauma, brain surgery or stroke. Post-operative complications were seen in 12 of 89 patients: six infections and six shunt failure and revision was necessary in 14%. In PTH cases, the post-operative improvement was seen in 40 of 52 patients being shunted and corresponded to FIM scores. At the other 31 cases, with non-traumatic origin, only two patients remain unchanged. Conclusions - Hydrocephalus is considered to be a frequent and important complication after severe brain damage. The incidence of hydrocephalus treated with shunt implantation in our neuro-rehabilitation unit was 4.4%. The postoperative improvement was 77%. Posttraumatic hydrocephalus concerns 5.2% of patients with severe TBI during last seven years in our institution. Diagnosis of posttraumatic hydrocephalus was established in 24%, and complication after shunt implantation (14%) was also recognized in the post-acute rehabilitation unit. It is strongly recommended for the team working at such type of units to obtain clinical practice. Teamwork, good cooperation between acute and postacutecare is necessary for successful rehabilitation of these patients.]

Clinical Neuroscience

[Classical neurology: Adieu! Or: what is the future of hungarian neurology, fruitful transformation or preprogrammed death?]


[According to our oppinion several ideas, trends and aims of the traditional neurology became outworn. (So together with all the romantic beauty and hierarchic relations: Adieu!). The specialisation within the main body of the profession is unavoidable. A new, high quality, cost-benefit sensitive, institutional system should be built up, non essentially on inpatient, but on outpatient basis, supported by a personal and partnership oriented patient/doctor relationship, with multidiszciplinatory co-operations and team-work. Education should be also rebuilt accordingly. This analysis of the present situation and recommendations for the future plans was given - since our ages - without any personal interest or attraction. We tried to keep before us only the future of our beloved profession, the preservation of worths, and the exploration of the withdrawing dogmatic views. We invite everybody who is interested in the current questions of our profession to share their oppinion with the whole neurological society and take part in open discussion of these important questions.]

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Clinical Neuroscience

Alexithymia is associated with cognitive impairment in patients with Parkinson’s disease

SENGUL Yildizhan, KOCAK Müge, CORAKCI Zeynep, SENGUL Serdar Hakan, USTUN Ismet

Cognitive dysfunction (CD) is a common non-motor symptom of Parkinson’s disease (PD). Alexithy­mia is a still poorly understood neuropsychiatric feature of PD. Cognitive impairment (especially visuospatial dysfunction and executive dysfunction) and alexithymia share com­mon pathology of neuroanatomical structures. We hypo­thesized that there must be a correlation between CD and alexithymia levels considering this relationship of neuroanatomy. Objective – The aim of this study was to evaluate the association between alexithymia and neurocognitive function in patients with PD. Thirty-five patients with PD were included in this study. The Toronto Alexithymia Scale–20 (TAS-20), Geriatric Depression Inventory (GDI) and a detailed neuropsychological evaluation were performed. Higher TAS-20 scores were negatively correlated with Wechsler Adult Intelligence Scale (WAIS) similarities test score (r =-0.71, p value 0.02), clock drawing test (CDT) scores (r=-0.72, p=0.02) and verbal fluency (VF) (r=-0.77, p<0.01). Difficulty identifying feelings subscale score was negatively correlated with CDT scores (r=-0.74, p=0.02), VF scores (r=-0.66, p=0.04), visual memory immediate recall (r=-0.74, p=0.01). VF scores were also correlated with difficulty describing feelings (DDF) scores (r=-0.66, p=0.04). There was a reverse relationship bet­ween WAIS similarities and DDF scores (r=-0.70, p=0.02), and externally oriented-thinking (r=-0.77,p<0.01). Executive function Z score was correlated with the mean TAS-20 score (r=-62, p=0.03) and DDF subscale score (r=-0.70, p=0.01) Alexithymia was found to be associated with poorer performance on visuospatial and executive function test results. We also found that alexithymia was significantly correlated with depressive symptoms. Presence of alexithymia should therefore warn the clinicians for co-existing CD.

Clinical Neuroscience

Late simultaneous carcinomatous meningitis, temporal bone infiltrating macro-metastasis and disseminated multi-organ micro-metastases presenting with mono-symptomatic vertigo – a clinico-pathological case reporT

JARABIN András János, KLIVÉNYI Péter, TISZLAVICZ László, MOLNÁR Anna Fiona, GION Katalin, FÖLDESI Imre, KISS Geza Jozsef, ROVÓ László, BELLA Zsolt

Although vertigo is one of the most common complaints, intracranial malignant tumors rarely cause sudden asymmetry between the tone of the vestibular peripheries masquerading as a peripheral-like disorder. Here we report a case of simultaneous temporal bone infiltrating macro-metastasis and disseminated multi-organ micro-metastases presenting as acute unilateral vestibular syndrome, due to the reawakening of a primary gastric signet ring cell carcinoma. Purpose – Our objective was to identify those pathophysiological steps that may explain the complex process of tumor reawakening, dissemination. The possible causes of vestibular asymmetry were also traced. A 56-year-old male patient’s interdisciplinary medical data had been retrospectively analyzed. Original clinical and pathological results have been collected and thoroughly reevaluated, then new histological staining and immunohistochemistry methods have been added to the diagnostic pool. During the autopsy the cerebrum and cerebellum was edematous. The apex of the left petrous bone was infiltrated and destructed by a tumor mass of 2x2 cm in size. Histological reexamination of the original gastric resection specimen slides revealed focal submucosal tumorous infiltration with a vascular invasion. By immunohistochemistry mainly single infiltrating tumor cells were observed with Cytokeratin 7 and Vimentin positivity and partial loss of E-cadherin staining. The subsequent histological examination of necropsy tissue specimens confirmed the disseminated, multi-organ microscopic tumorous invasion. Discussion – It has been recently reported that the expression of Vimentin and the loss of E-cadherin is significantly associated with advanced stage, lymph node metastasis, vascular and neural invasion and undifferentiated type with p<0.05 significance. As our patient was middle aged and had no immune-deficiency, the promoting factor of the reawakening of the primary GC malignant disease after a 9-year-long period of dormancy remained undiscovered. The organ-specific tropism explained by the “seed and soil” theory was unexpected, due to rare occurrence of gastric cancer to metastasize in the meninges given that only a minority of these cells would be capable of crossing the blood brain barrier. Patients with past malignancies and new onset of neurological symptoms should alert the physician to central nervous system involvement, and the appropriate, targeted diagnostic and therapeutic work-up should be established immediately. Targeted staining with specific antibodies is recommended. Recent studies on cell lines indicate that metformin strongly inhibits epithelial-mesenchymal transition of gastric cancer cells. Therefore, further studies need to be performed on cases positive for epithelial-mesenchymal transition.

Clinical Neuroscience

[The role of sleep in the relational memory processes ]

CSÁBI Eszter, ZÁMBÓ Ágnes, PROKECZ Lídia

[A growing body of evidence suggests that sleep plays an essential role in the consolidation of different memory systems, but less is known about the beneficial effect of sleep on relational memory processes and the recognition of emotional facial expressions, however, it is a fundamental cognitive skill in human everyday life. Thus, the study aims to investigate the effect of timing of learning and the role of sleep in relational memory processes. 84 young adults (average age: 22.36 (SD: 3.22), 21 male/63 female) participated in our study, divided into two groups: evening group and morning group indicating the time of learning. We used the face-name task to measure relational memory and facial expression recognition. There were two sessions for both groups: the immediate testing phase and the delayed retesting phase, separated by 24 hours. 84 young adults (average age: 22.36 (SD: 3.22), 21 male/63 female) participated in our study, divided into two groups: evening group and morning group indicating the time of learning. We used the face-name task to measure relational memory and facial expression recognition. There were two sessions for both groups: the immediate testing phase and the delayed retesting phase, separated by 24 hours. Our results suggest that the timing of learning and sleep plays an important role in the stabilizing process of memory representation to resist against forgetting.]

Clinical Neuroscience

Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease: A single center experience and systemic analysis of cases in Turkey

USLU Ilgen Ferda, ELIF Gökçal, GÜRSOY Esra Azize, KOLUKISA Mehmet, YILDIZ Babacan Gulsen

We aimed to analyze the clinical, laboratory and neuroimaging findings in patients with sporadic Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease (CJD) in a single center as well as to review other published cases in Turkey. Between January 1st, 2014 and June 31st, 2017, all CJD cases were evaluated based on clinical findings, differential diagnosis, the previous misdiagnosis, electroencephalography (EEG), cerebrospinal fluid and cranial magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) findings in our center. All published cases in Turkey between 2005-2018 were also reviewed. In a total of 13 patients, progressive cognitive decline was the most common presenting symptom. Two patients had a diagnosis of Heidenhain variant, 1 patient had a diagnosis of Oppenheimer-Brownell variant. Seven patients (53.3%) had been misdiagnosed with depression, vascular dementia, normal pressure hydrocephalus or encephalitis. Eleven patients (87%) had typical MRI findings but only 5 of these were present at baseline. Asymmetrical high signal abnormalities on MRI were observed in 4 patients. Five patients (45.4%) had periodic spike wave complexes on EEG, all appeared during the follow-up. There were 74 published cases in Turkey bet­ween 2005 and 2018, with various clinical presentations. CJD has a variety of clinical features in our patient series as well as in cases reported in Turkey. Although progressive cognitive decline is the most common presenting symptom, unusual manifestations in early stages of the disease might cause misdiagnosis. Variant forms should be kept in mind in patients with isolated visual or cerebellar symptoms. MRI and EEG should be repeated during follow-up period if the clinical suspicion still exists.

Clinical Neuroscience

Neuroscience highlights: Main cell types underlying memory and spatial navigation

KRABOTH Zoltán, KÁLMÁN Bernadette

Interest in the hippocampal formation and its role in navigation and memory arose in the second part of the 20th century, at least in part due to the curious case of Henry G. Molaison, who underwent brain surgery for intractable epilepsy. The temporal association observed between the removal of his entorhinal cortex along with a significant part of hippocampus and the developing severe memory deficit inspired scientists to focus on these regions. The subsequent discovery of the so-called place cells in the hippocampus launched the description of many other functional cell types and neuronal networks throughout the Papez-circuit that has a key role in memory processes and spatial information coding (speed, head direction, border, grid, object-vector etc). Each of these cell types has its own unique characteristics, and together they form the so-called “Brain GPS”. The aim of this short survey is to highlight for practicing neurologists the types of cells and neuronal networks that represent the anatomical substrates and physiological correlates of pathological entities affecting the limbic system, especially in the temporal lobe. For that purpose, we survey early discoveries along with the most relevant neuroscience observations from the recent literature. By this brief survey, we highlight main cell types in the hippocampal formation, and describe their roles in spatial navigation and memory processes. In recent decades, an array of new and functionally unique neuron types has been recognized in the hippocampal formation, but likely more remain to be discovered. For a better understanding of the heterogeneous presentations of neurological disorders affecting this anatomical region, insights into the constantly evolving neuroscience behind may be helpful. The public health consequences of diseases that affect memory and spatial navigation are high, and grow as the population ages, prompting scientist to focus on further exploring this brain region.