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Electrodermal activity response during seizures: A systematic review and meta-analysis

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Marta Casanovas Ortega, Elisa Bruno, Mark P. Richardson

Original languageEnglish
Article number108864
JournalEpilepsy and Behavior
PublishedSep 2022

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Publisher Copyright: © 2022 The Authors

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Introduction: Wearable devices for continuous seizure monitoring have drawn increasing attention in the field of epilepsy research. One of the parameters recorded by these devices is electrodermal activity (EDA). The aim of this study was to systematically review the literature to estimate the incidence of electrodermal response during seizures. Methods: We searched all articles recording concurrent EDA and EEG activity during the pre-ictal, ictal, and postictal periods in children and adults with epilepsy. Studies reporting the total number of seizures and number of seizures with an EDA response were included for a random-effects meta-analysis. Results: Nineteen studies, including 550 participants and 1115 seizures were reviewed. All studies demonstrated an EDA increase during the ictal and postictal periods, while only three reported pre-ictal EDA responses. The meta-analysis showed a pooled EDA response incidence of 82/100 seizures (95% CI 70–91). Tonic-clonic seizures (both generalized tonic-clonic seizures (GTCS) and focal to bilateral tonic-clonic seizures (FBTCS)) elicited a more pronounced (higher and longer-lasting) EDA response when compared with focal seizures (excluding FBTCS). Discussion: Epileptic seizures produce an electrodermal response detectable by wearable devices during the pre-ictal, ictal, and postictal periods. Further research is needed to better understand EDA changes and to analyze factors which may influence the EDA response.

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