Ictal fear in temporal lobe epilepsy: Association with interictal behavioral changes

Orrin Devinsky, Christiane Cox, Ellen Witt, Donna Ronsaville, Paul Fedio, William H. Theodore

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    8 Scopus citations


    We studied 40 patients with temporal lobe epilepsy to determine if ictal fear was associated with changes in cognition, personality, or psychopathology. Patients with ictal fear scored higher (p < 0.10) than those without ictal fear on the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI) Social Introversion and Psychasthenia subscales, MMPI-derived scales including depression, poor morale, and delinquency and on the Spielberger Trait Anxiety Scale. These differences were not even marginally significant with Bonferoni correction for multiple comparisons. No differences were found between these groups in the Temporal Lobe (Bear-Fedio) Questionnaire, Buss-Durkey Hostility Inventory, or history of psychiatric hospitalization. However, a history of paranoid psychosis and anxiety disorder, as well as current treatment with a neuroleptic medication, were more common in patients with ictal fear. This study provides limited support for the thesis that ictal fear is associated with behavioral changes in epilepsy, particularly symptoms of anxiety, introversion, and paranoia.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)231-238
    Number of pages8
    JournalJournal of Epilepsy
    Issue number4
    StatePublished - 1991


    • Behavior
    • Fear
    • Seizures

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • General Neuroscience
    • Clinical Neurology


    Dive into the research topics of 'Ictal fear in temporal lobe epilepsy: Association with interictal behavioral changes'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this