Purpose: To evaluate changes in intractable epilepsy patients in terms of quality of life, depression, anxiety, stigma, and impact of epilepsy before and after surgery.
Methods: Twenty patients with intractable temporal lobe epilepsy who were waiting for surgery (pre-SAH group) and 21 patients who had already undergone surgery (post-SAH group) were studied. All patients received SF-36, Beck Depression Inventory, State-Trait Anxiety Inventory, stigma and impact of epilepsy inventories, and a form asking their own perspectives about epilepsy and surgery.
Results: Post-SAH group scored higher on all subscales of SF-36, with only RE scores being significantly better (t=-1.98, P=.05). Although depression, anxiety, and stigma scores were higher in pre-SAH group, only impact of epilepsy scores were significantly higher in pre-SAH group (t=-2.951, P=.005). Seizure frequency and comorbidity had significant effects on QOL where amount of AEDs and QOL were negatively related (r=-0.318, P<0.05). Both groups stated lack of independence and social activities as the main concern (48.8%) and recovery from epilepsy as the most important expectation from surgery (85.4%). Post-surgical group mentioned the difference in their life after surgery as independence and increase in social activities (47.6%).
Conclusion: QOL of patients after surgery was found to be better than before surgery. Results also revealed that seizure frequency, comorbidity, and anti-epileptic medication affected health related QOL negatively. Impact of epilepsy levels was found to be higher among the pre-SAH patients. Finally, independence seemed to be the most important concern and gain for Turkish epilepsy patients.