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PSYCHOGENIC NON-EPILEPTIC SEIZURES PROGRAM

PSYCHOGENIC NON-EPILEPTIC SEIZURES PROGRAM


Directors:
Lorna Myers, PhD and Marcelo Lancman, MD

Program description:
Psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (PNES) are events that resemble epileptic seizures but are provoked by emotional stress rather than abnormal electrical brain activity.  Treatment for PNES is a team effort by the epileptologist, clinical psychologist, and psychiatrist (if needed). 

NEREG’s clinicians have a unique and specialized diagnostic and treatment approach for this condition.  Once the diagnosis has been made by the epileptologist following VEEG and other testing procedures, a referral is made for a psychological interview by one of our two licensed clinical psychologists.  During this interview, questions are asked about current and past history, including social, educational, psychological, and medical background.  A comprehensive neuropsychological assessment is also completed with a special battery of tests to assess memory, language, attention, and general thinking as well as key emotional factors and personality.  Based on these results, a decision is made between the clinician and patient regarding possible treatment options and, if needed, a referral to psychiatry for medication evaluation is made.

Once it is determined that our program is appropriate for the patient, individual and/or group (12 sessions) psychotherapy is started.  Treatment targets trauma symptoms, depressive worldviews, anxiety, and problems with anger and stress management.  Treatment is supportive, but also teaches the patient skills and techniques to learn to reduce or eliminate the non epileptic events, attain a healthier and adaptive way of functioning, and better stress coping methods.  Once the patient completes the therapy program, a monthly (drop-in) support group is available.    

Treatment offered in the following locations:
NEW YORK:
Manhattan
White Plains
Middletown
Staten Island

NEW JERSEY:

Hackensack
Summit

Our recent publications on psychogenic non-epileptic seizures:
• Psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (PNES) on the Internet: Online representation of the disorder and frequency of search terms
• Socialization characteristics in patients with psychogenic non-epileptic seizures
Prevalence of alexithymia in patients with psychogenic non-epileptic seizures and epileptic seizures and predictors in psychogenic non-epileptic seizures.
Psychogenic non-epileptic seizures: predisposing factors to diminished quality of life.
Psychological trauma in patients with psychogenic non-epileptic seizures: Trauma characteristics and those who develop PTSD
Stress coping strategies in patients with psychogenic non-epileptic seizures and how they relate to trauma symptoms, alexithymia, anger and mood

Webinars
• Psychogenic non epileptic seizures webinar: an Introduction for patients and loved ones - Dr. Lorna Myers
• Psychogenic non epileptic seizures: what psychologists need to know - Dr. Lorna Myers
Dr. Lorna Myers, New book: Psychogenic non- epileptic seizures: A Guide
• Crisis Psicogenas no-epilepticas

Research activities:
2015
(Abst. 1.178), 2015 The utility of Prolonged Exposure Therapy (PET) in the treatment of patients who are dually diagnosed with PNES and PTSD

2014
American Epilepsy Society Poster Session #: 1.088 Depression, Anxiety and Quality of Life in Hispanic Spanish-speaking patients with psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (PNES) compared to those with epilepsy

2013
December 8:
AES #: 2.205 NEUROPSYCHOLOGICAL FUNCTIONING IN PATIENTS WITH PSYCHOGENIC NON-EPILEPTIC SEIZURES (PNES): THOSE WITH COMORBID PTSD COMPARED TO THOSE WITH NO TRAUMA

(Abst. 3260), December 9:
SOCIALIZATION PATTERNS IN PATIENTS WITH PSYCHOGENIC NON-EPILEPTIC SEIZURES (PNES)

2012
American Epilepsy Society (Abst. 1.301) COMPARISON OF EXECUTIVE FUNCTIONS IN PATIENTS WITH PSYCHOGENIC NON-EPILEPTIC SEIZURES (PNES) AND TEMPORAL LOBE EPILEPSY (TLE) AFTER CONTROLLING FOR MALINGERING.

Psychogenic non-epileptic seizures: Predisposing factors to diminished quality of life.

2011
American Epilepsy Society, Abstract presented
Sexually abused patients with psychological non-epileptic seizures (PNES) exhibit better visual memory scores compared to PNES patients who have suffered other forms of abuse


2010
American Epilepsy Society, Abstract presented 
Correlation between psychological non epileptic seizure severity and self reported state/trait anger and anger expression

American Epilepsy Society, Abstract presented
Modification and improvement of an existing group treatment for psychological non-epileptic seizures

American Epilepsy Society, Abstract presented 
Nonepileptic Seizures, epileptic seizures, and intrasubtest scatter

Follow us:
On Facebook, visit out Psychological Non Epileptic Seizures page: (http://www.facebook.com/pages/Psychological-Non-Epileptic-Seizures/144184112260986)
Linkedinhttp://www.linkedin.com/groups/psychogenic-non-epileptic-seizures-3997535?trk=myg_ugrp_ovr
 
Via our blog on psychological non epileptic seizures: (http://blog.nonepilepticseizures.com/)

Other resources:
Non Epileptic Attack Disorder (in the United Kingdom) http://www.neadtrust.co.uk/

Non Epileptic Attacks (also in the United Kingdom) http://www.nonepilepticattacks.info/index.html

Make an appointment:
Services are offered in many of our New York and New Jersey offices.  Talk to your epileptologist about obtaining a referral, or call (914) 428-9213.

Email Inquiries: lmyers@epilepsygroup.com



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