Varieties of aggressive behavior in temporal lobe epilepsy

Am J Psychiatry. 1984 May;141(5):651-6. doi: 10.1176/ajp.141.5.651.


While an increase in aggression has frequently been reported in association with temporal lobe epilepsy, the validity of this behavioral observation and the relationship of specific aggressive behavior to electrophysiologic abnormality in the human limbic system remain unclear. Case reports of five patients document the clinical importance of aggressive behavior, especially during the interictal period, in patients with temporal lobe epilepsy. Aggressiveness was often encountered together with other deepened emotions and changes in behavior previously described as an interictal behavior syndrome. Variations among the individual patients may clarify the neuroanatomical mechanisms leading to aggression and suggest specific therapeutic interventions.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aggression* / physiology
  • Electroencephalography
  • Emotions / physiology
  • Epilepsy, Temporal Lobe / physiopathology
  • Epilepsy, Temporal Lobe / psychology*
  • Epilepsy, Temporal Lobe / therapy
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Limbic System / physiopathology
  • Male
  • Temporal Lobe / physiopathology
  • Violence