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Non-epileptic seizures in children: Views and approaches at a UK child and adolescent psychiatry conference

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Andrew McWilliams, Colin Reilly, Isobel Heyman

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)23-25
Number of pages3
JournalSeizure
Volume53
Early online date31 Oct 2017
DOIs
Accepted/In press29 Oct 2017
E-pub ahead of print31 Oct 2017
PublishedDec 2017

King's Authors

Abstract

PURPOSE: To describe clinical experiences of paediatric non-epileptic seizures (NES) among doctors attending a UK child and adolescent psychiatry conference.

METHODS: Sixty-six participants completed a semi-structured bespoke questionnaire. Results are reported using descriptive statistics.

RESULTS: Two-thirds of respondents regarded the best name for the disorder to be "non-epileptic seizures". Although most doctors saw new cases each year, two-thirds described their own service as poorly equipped to manage NES. Anti-epileptic drugs (AEDs) were commonly still being taken by children without epilepsy 6 months after their diagnosis. Preferred treatment approaches included supportive case management and cognitive behavioural therapy. Joint working with paediatrics and liaison with schools were seen as important.

CONCLUSION: Despite many clinicians having experience of the disorder, NES seemed to occupy a neglected status, often falling between paediatrics and child mental health, with inadequately defined care pathways leading to sub-optimal treatment. Re-configuration of services to prioritise liaison with paediatrics and education may support development of effective treatment, thus maximising health, social and educational opportunities for young people and their families.

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