Subclinical epileptiform process in patients with unipolar depression and its indirect psychophysiological manifestations.
Full recordShow full item record
AbstractBACKGROUND: According to recent clinical findings epileptiform activity in temporolimbic structures may cause depressive and other psychiatric symptoms that may occur independently of any seizure in patient's history. In addition in these patients subclinical seizure-like activity with indirect clinical manifestations likely may occur in a form of various forms of cognitive, affective, memory, sensory, behavioral and somatic symptoms (the so-called complex partial seizure-like symptoms). A typical characteristic of epileptiform changes is increased neural synchrony related to spreading of epileptiform activity between hemispheres even in subclinical conditions i.e. without seizures. These findings suggest a hypothesis that measures reflecting a level of synchronization and information transfer between hemispheres could reflect spreading of epileptiform activity and might be related to complex partial seizure-like symptoms. METHODS AND FINDINGS: Suitable data for such analysis may provide various physiological signals reflecting brain laterality, as for example bilateral electrodermal activity (EDA) that is closely related to limbic modulation influences. With this purpose we have performed measurement and analysis of bilateral EDA and compared the results with psychometric measures of complex partial seizure-like symptoms, depression and actually experienced stress in 44 patients with unipolar depression and 35 healthy controls. The results in unipolar depressive patients show that during rest conditions the patients with higher level of complex partial seizure like symptoms (CPSI) display increased level of EDA transinformation (PTI) calculated between left and right EDA records (Spearman correlation between CPSI and PTI is r = 0.43, p = 0.004). CONCLUSIONS: The result may present potentially useful clinical finding suggesting that increased EDA transinformation (PTI) could indirectly indicate increased neural synchrony as a possible indicator of epileptiform activity in unipolar depressive patients treated by serotoninergic antidepresants.