Study: Epilepsy and Psychosis are Linked

Patients who have epilepsy are more likely to suffer from schizophrenia as well, according to several studies. And now new studies show that families with a history of epilepsy are also at risk of psychosis. While the results of these latter studies have not been confirmed yet by the scientific community, many researchers are looking into different methods to see if it was possible.

The various studies using different investigative techniques have been able to show that schizophrenic patients who have epilepsy are displaying some similar structural abnormalities in the brain. This suggests that the patients may also share a common etymology, too. As a means of proving this potential, some researchers decided to conduct a population-based study of kids and parents who reside in Helsinki, Finland. The information was taken from two national databases in Finland and included 9,653 families and their 23,404 children.

The people with epilepsy were shown to be 5.5-fold more likely to also have a psychotic disorder of some sort. There was a 6.3-fold increase in patients that had bipolar disorder in particular, and an 8.5-fold increase in patients suffering from schizophrenia. The researchers also found that epilepsy and psychosis were linked in families genetically. While many theories have come up that link epilepsy and psychosis to one another, those studies have generally begun with researchers already believing that epilepsy was toxic to the brain. Now, however, previous genetic and neurodevelopmental evidence is showing that these disorders are linked in a far more complex manner than previously believed.

“Our evidence that epilepsy and psychotic illness may cluster within some families indicates that these disorders may be more closely linked than previously thought. We hope that this epidemiological evidence may contribute to the on-going efforts to disentangle the complex pathways that lead to these serious illnesses,” said Dr. Mary Clarke, first author of the study and lecturer at Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland.

Epilepsy is a difficult condition to live with and many drugs are used to try to prevent the seizures which characterize the condition. One of those drugs is Topamax. Topamax can cause birth defects in babies exposed to the drug in-utero. Some of those birth defects linked to Topamax include PPHN, oral clefts, neural tube defects and heat, lung and brain defects.

If your baby was born with any of these birth defects after being exposed to Topamax during gestation, contact Greg Jones today for a free consultation. I am experienced at fighting Topamax lawsuits and may be able to help you recover money for your baby’s injuries

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