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Clinical Neuroscience

SEPTEMBER 30, 2019

[Newer studies on the strong link between sleep and epilepsy: Epilepsy as an epileptic transformation of sleep plastic functions]


[Aims - Overview of the new data about the strong link of sleep and epilepsy and conjoining cognitive impairment. Methods - Search for relevant references and summary of our own research activity on the topic. Results - Strong interrealtionship exists between epilepsy and plastic brain functions (memory processing and synaptic homeostasis) and the working modes of NREM sleep. In the most frequent childhood and adult epilepsy networks responsible for plastic functions can be derailed to an epileptic level of excitability, and suffer a transitory or permanent epileptic transformation. Exampling on the three big epilepsies: absence epilepsy; medial temporal lobe epilepsy; and childhood idiopathic focal age dependent epilepsy spectrum we demonstrate the most important features of this epileptic transformation. The association of cognitive impairment to certain sleep dependent epilepsies gains explanation by the epilepsy caused interference with slow wave decline (ICFE) and memory consolidation (MTLE) during NREM sleep. This paper serves also to introduce the concept of sleep dependent system epilepsies. Conclusions - We provide evidences about shared mechanisms among sleep related epilepsies being the derailment of sleep plastic funcions toward exaggerated excitability determined by the inherent possibilities of the signal transduction properties. ]

Lege Artis Medicinae

JUNE 07, 2021

[Epilepsy in coronavirus pandemic]


[We aim to review the impact of COVID-19 pandemic on epilepsy and epilepsy-care. While the virus has no specific link with epilepsy, it may affect the nervous system both directly and indirectly, leading to seizures in several ways. The hyper-coagulable state occurring with the infection may cause strokes leading to seizures. The infection may first manifest in the form of disturbances of consciousness and behaviour, seizures, and even status epilepticus. The interactions of antiviral/antiepileptic drugs need to be taken into account during treatment. The hypercoagulable state induced by COVID-2 infection may cause stroke, which leads to seizures. The infection can occur also as an impaired consciousness of non-epileptic origin. Interactions of antiviral/antiepileptic drugs have also to be taken into account. The pandemic itself as well as quarantines and social distancing may cause anxiety and insomnia, challenge continuous antiepileptic supply; each one carrying the risk of seizing. Young epilepsy patients with learning disabilities and mental health issues are most vulnerable, justifying their hyper-protection. The danger of infection has highlighted the role of telemedicine. Internet-based video communication may ensure full care for chro­nic patients. Those methods favour bes­­ted patients with higher education. Epilepsy does not increase directly the risk of infection, but its comorbidities may worsen the course of the disease. Brain lesions and hypoxia, stress, insomnia and fever joining the infection increase seizure susceptibility. Because the danger of infection ma­de telemedicine an essential tool of pa­tient care, education and better computer supply for those in need is crucial. ]

Clinical Neuroscience

MAY 30, 2019

The methylation status of NKCC1 and KCC2 in the patients with refractory temporal lobe epilepsy

UNAL Yasemin, KARA Murat, GENC Fatma, OZTURK Aslan Dilek, GÖMCELI Bicer Yasemin, KAYNAR Taner, TOSUN Kursad, KUTLU Gülnihal

Purpose - Methylation is a key epigenetic modification of DNA and regarding its impact on epilepsy, it is argued that “DNA methylation may play an important role in seizure susceptibility and maintenance of the disorder”. DNA methylation status of KCC2 (SCL12A5) and NKCC1 (SCL12A2) associated with refractory temporal lobe epilepsy was investigated in our study. Materials and methods - Thirty-eight patients with temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) who were diagnosed by video EEG monitoring and 32 healthy control subjects were included in the study. Twenty-three patients in TLE group were men and the remaining 15 were women. Among them, 27 had unilateral temporal focus (9 with right; 18 with left) and 11 patients had bilateral TLE. We analyzed promoter region methylation status of the KCC2 (SCL12A5) and NKCC1 (SCL12A2) genes in the case and control groups. Gene regions of interest were amplified through PCR and sequencing was accomplished with pyro-sequencing. Results - We found a significant relationship between TLE and methylation on the NKCC1. However, there was no association between TLE and methylation on the KCC2 gene. Also, we found no association between right or left and unilateral or bilateral foci of TLE. There was no relationship between TLE and methylation on the NKCC1and KCC2 genes in terms of mesial temporal sclerosis in cranial MRI, head trauma or febrile convulsions. Conclusion - The methylation of NKCC1 can be a mecha­nism of refractory temporal lobe epilepsy. There are limited findings about DNA methylation in TLE. Therefore, further studies with large sample sizes are necessary.

Clinical Neuroscience

JULY 30, 2020

[Decisional collisions between evidence and experience based medicine in care of people with epilepsy]


[Background – Based on the literature and his long-term clinical practice the author stresses the main collisions of evidence and experience based medicine in the care of people with epilepsy. Purpose – To see, what are the professional decisions of high responsibility in the epilepsy-care, in whose the relevant clinical research is still lacking or does not give a satisfactory basis. Methods – Following the structure of the Hungarian Guideline the author points the critical situations and decisions. He explains also the causes of the dilemmas: the lack or uncertainty of evidences or the difficulty of scientific investigation of the situation. Results – There are some priorities of experience based medicine in the following areas: definition of epilepsy, classification of seizures, etiology – including genetic background –, role of precipitating and provoking factors. These are able to influence the complex diagnosis. In the pharmacotherapy the choice of the first drug and the optimal algorithm as well as the tasks during the care are also depends on personal experiences sometimes contradictory to the official recommendations. Same can occur in the choice of the non-pharmacological treatments and rehabilitation. Discussion and conclusion – Personal professional experiences (and interests of patients) must be obligatory accessories of evidence based attitude, but for achieving the optimal results, in some situations they replace the official recommendations. Therefore it is very important that the problematic patients do meet experts having necessary experiences and also professional responsibility to help in these decisions. ]

Clinical Neuroscience

NOVEMBER 20, 2015

[Sleep disordered breathing and epilepsy: relationships and therapeutic considerations]

FALUDI Béla, BÓNÉ Beáta, KOMOLY Sámuel, JANSZKY József

[The importance of the sleep related breathing disorders (obstructive sleep apnea syndrome, central sleep apnea, and Cheyne-Stokes breathing) in the pathophysiology crebro- and cardiovascular disorders is well known. The relationship of sleep related breathing abnormalities and epilepsy is also important but underestimated in the daily practice. The relation is bidirectional. The breathing abnormalities in sleep may play important role in generating epileptic seizure, but the adverse effect of seizure and antiepileptic therapy (generation of apneas and hypopneas) may worsen the seizure control. The effect of new therapies (vagal nerve and deep brain stimulation) on the sleep architecture and sleep disordered breathing must be examined and discussed. Here we present a brief case of epileptic patient with deep brain stimulation therapy on sleep as well. The examination of the sleep related breathing abnormalities in epilepsy patient may help improve the effectiveness of antiepileptic therapy.]

Clinical Neuroscience

JULY 30, 2018

[Strategies of using the new antiepileptic drugs for epilepsy in adults]

NIKL János

[The new antiepileptic drugs have not changed the basic pharmacological treatment principles of epilepsy, but they have given greater choice in focal and in generalized epilepsies as well. The new drugs are not necessarily more effective than traditional drugs, but they have favourable pharmacokinetic characteristics, fewer interactions and better adverse effect profile in the acute and chronic phase of the treatment. They generally show a lower teratogenicity risk than the standard antiepileptics, although carbamazepine, one of the standard drugs can be used and zonisamide, a new one must be avoid in pregnancy. Due to characteristics mentioned above they are not only effective as add-on therapy, but in monotherapy as well. On the basis of the international and national recommendation lamotrigine and levetiracetam belong to the first line antiepileptics. The favourable tolerability of the new antiepileptics may improve the patient’s compliance and adherence to the given treatment. The low teratogenicity makes them especially suitable for the treatment of women of childbearing age. The new antiepileptic drugs can succesfully used for the treatment of special patients’ groups as for the post stroke, poszttraumatic epilepsies, for the epilepsies accompanied with brain tumours as well as for epilepsies in the elderly. The new drugs are advantageous for the treatment of such patients who have psychiatric symptoms or signs of cognitive decline and high risk of these symptoms respectively.]

Clinical Neuroscience

MARCH 30, 2016

[Individual evaluation of loreta abnormalities in idiopathic generalized epilepsy]

CLEMENS Béla, PUSKÁS Szilvia, BESENYEI Mónika, KONKÁDOR István, HOLLÓDY Katalin, FOGARASI András, BENSE Katalin, EMRI Miklós, OPPOSITS Gábor, KOVÁCS Noémi Zsuzsanna, FEKETE István

[Background – Contemporary neuroimaging methods disclosed structural and functional cerebral abnormalities in idiopathic generalized epilepsies (IGEs). However, individual electrical (EEG) abnormalities have not been evaluated yet in IGE patients. IGE patients were investigated in the drug-free condition and after 3-6 month of antiepileptic treatment. To estimate the reproducibility of qEEG variables a retrospective recruited cohort of IGE patients was investigated. 19- channel resting state EEG activity was recorded. For each patient a total of 2 minutes EEG activity was analyzed by LORETA (Low Resolution Electromagnetic Tomography). Raw LORETA values were Z-transformed and projected to a MRI template. Z-values outside within the [+] 1. In drug-free condition, 41-50% of IGE patients showed abnormal LORETA values. 2. Abnormal LORETA findings showed great inter-individual variability. 3. Most abnormal LORETA-findings were symmetrical. 4. Most maximum Z-values were localized to frontal or temporal cortex. 5. Succesfull treatment was mostly coupled with disappearence of LORETA-abnormality, persistent seizures were accompanied by persistent LORETA abnormality. 1. LORETA abnormalities detected in the untreated condition reflect seizure-generating property of the cortex in IGE patients. 2. Maximum LORETA-Z abnormalities were topographically congruent with structural abnormalities reported by other research groups. 3. LORETA might help to investigate drug effects at the whole-brain level.]

Clinical Neuroscience

JULY 30, 2019

Relationship between Status Epilepticus Severity Score and etiology in adult NCSE patients

GENC Fatma, ERDAL Abidin, AKCA Gizem, KARACAY Ertan, GÖKSU Özaydın Eylem, KUTLU Gülnihal, GÖMCELI Bicer Yasemin

Purpose - Nonconvulsive status epilepticus (NCSE) is a heterogeneous, severe neurological disorder of different etiologies. In this study, the outcomes of NCSE episodes was assessed in a large series of adult patients. Our objective was to evaluate relationship between Status Epilepticus Severity Score (STESS) and etiology and the role of etiological factors on predicting the outcomes. Method - In this retrospective study, the medical records of 95 patients over 18 years of age who were diagnosed with NCSE between June 2011 and December 2015 were reviewed. Their treatment and follow-up for NCSE was performed at the Epilepsy Unit in Department of Neurology, Antalya Research and Training Hospital. Etiological factors thought to be responsible for NCSE episodes as well as the prognostic data were retrieved. The etiological factors were classified into three groups as those with a known history of epilepsy (Group 1), primary neurological disorder (Group 2), or systemic/unknown etiology (Group 3). STESS was retrospectively applied to patients. Results - There were 95 participants, 59 of whom were female. Group 1, Group 2, and Group 3 consisted of 11 (7 female), 54 (33 female), and 30 (19 female) patients, respectively. Of the 18 total deaths, 12 occurred in Group 2, and 6 in Group 3. The negative predictive value for a STESS score of ≤ 2 was 93.88% (+LR 2.05 95% CI: 1.44-2.9 and -LR 0.3 95% CI 0.10-0.84 ) in the overall study group. While the corresponding values for Group 1 (patients with epilepsy), Group 2 (patients with primary neurological disorder), and group 3 (patients with systemic or unknown etiology) were 100%, 92.59% (+LR 2.06 95%CI: 1.32-3.21 and -LR 0.28 95% CI 0.08-1.02 ) 83.33% (+LR 1.14 95%CI: 0.59-2.9 and -LR 0.80 95% CI 0.23-2.73). Conclusions - This study included the one of the largest patients series ever reported in whom STESS, a clinical scoring system proposed for use in patients with status epilepticus, has been implemented. Although STESS appeared to be quite useful for predicting a favorable outcome in NCSE patients with epilepsy and primary neurological disorders, its predictive value in patients with systemic or unknown etiology was lower. Further prospective studies including larger NCSE samples are warranted.

Clinical Neuroscience

MARCH 30, 2020

[Intracranial EEG monitoring methods]

TÓTH Márton, JANSZKY József

[Resective surgery is considered to be the best option towards achieving seizure-free state in drug-resistant epilepsy. Intracranial EEG (iEEG) is necessary if the seizure-onset zone is localized near to an eloquent cortical area, or if the results of presurgical examinations are discordant, or if an extratemporal epilepsy patient is MRI-negative. Nowadays, 3 kinds of electrodes are used: (1) foramen ovale (FO) electrodes; (2) subdural strip or grid electrodes (SDG); (3) deep electrodes (stereo-electroencephalographia, SEEG). The usage of FO electrode is limited to bitemporal cases. SDG and SEEG have a distinct philosophical approach, different advantages and disadvantages. SDG is appropriate for localizing seizure-onset zones on hemispherial or interhemispherial surfaces; it is preferable if the seizure-onset zone is near to an eloquent cortical area. SEEG is excellent in exploration of deeper cortical structures (depths of cortical sulci, amygdala, hippocampus), although a very precise planning is required because of the low spatial sampling. The chance for seizure-freedom is relatively high performing both methods (SDG: 55%, SEEG: 64%), beside a tolerable rate of complications.]