Psychogenic seizures and psychogenic movement disorders: are they the same patients?

Epilepsy Behav. 2012 Dec;25(4):666-9. doi: 10.1016/j.yebeh.2012.10.007. Epub 2012 Nov 15.


Psychogenic nonepileptic seizures (PNES) and psychogenic movement disorders (PMD) are common and disabling problems with abnormal psychological profiles, and they may have common features that could aid in better understanding and management. Since PNES and PMD are investigated and reported separately, comparisons are lacking. Psychogenic nonepileptic seizure and psychogenic movement disorder patients completed demographic, clinical, and psychological inventories including the Short Form (SF)-12 Health Status Survey (Physical and Mental Health Summary Scores), the Brief Symptom Inventory (BSI)-18 (somatization, depression, and anxiety subscales), and the Lorig Self-Efficacy Scale. Psychogenic nonepileptic seizure and psychogenic movement disorder patients had similar psychological profiles with reduced SF-12 Physical Health and Mental Health Summary Scores and increased BSI somatization, depression, and anxiety ratings. They varied slightly in age and gender, but their main distinguishing features were the presenting signs. These similar profiles suggest that PNES and PMD may not be distinct or separate entities and that collaborative investigative efforts and management are warranted.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Female
  • Health Status
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Movement Disorders / diagnosis*
  • Movement Disorders / psychology
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  • Psychological Tests
  • Psychology
  • Seizures / diagnosis*
  • Seizures / psychology
  • Self Efficacy