- As many as 3 out of 10 patients with epilepsy meet formal criteria for major depressive disorder.
Why this matters
- Little is known about rates of depression in older adults with epilepsy.
- Researchers at Rush University in Chicago retrieved the electronic medical record of all patients seen at the Rush Epilepsy Clinic in 2014-2016.
- Patients ≥60 years with a confirmed diagnosis of epilepsy were included.
- 73 patients (48 female) have been identified; the mean age was 66.
- The average duration of epilepsy was 17 years; median seizure frequency was 1 year.
- The majority were on a single antiepileptic drug (AED), 9 required three AEDs, and 14 required 2.
- The average score on the NDDI-E was 11+/- 4 (>10 is diagnostic for depression) and on the PHQ-GAD-7 was 5 +/- 5 (>15 is diagnostic for anxiety).
- 52% (n=38) scored positive for depression, while only 5% (n=4) scored positive for anxiety.
- Approximately 17%-30% of patients will meet formal criteria for major depressive disorder and 21% of patients with poorly controlled temporal lobe epilepsy will have major anxiety disorder.