Relationship of epilepsy-related factors to anxiety and depression scores in epileptic children

Oguz A., Kurul S., Dirik E.

JOURNAL OF CHILD NEUROLOGY, vol.17, no.1, pp.37-40, 2002 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 17 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2002
  • Doi Number: 10.1177/088307380201700109
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.37-40
  • Dokuz Eylül University Affiliated: Yes


Cognitive and behavrioral impairments are found more often among epileptic children than among their peers. In this study, we evaluated the anxiety and depression in epileptic children to compare their results with that of a healthy control group and to determine the relationship of anxiety and depression scores to epilepsy-related factors. The State Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI) and Children's Depression Inventory (CDI) were applied to 35 patients with epilepsy aged 9 to IS years (mean age 12.9 +/- 2.52 years) and to 35 healthy children who served as the control group. Both study and control groups were divided into two age groups (9 to 11 and 12 to 18 years) to exclude the effect of puberty on anxiety and depression scores. Significant depression and suicidal ideation were determined in the study group. The mean trait anxiety score was significantly higher in the 9- to I I-year age group of epileptic patients than the corresponding control group (35.90 +/- 6.90 and 29.33 +/- 2.84, P <.05). The mean state anxiety score (33.90 +/- 3.90 and 30.40 +/- 6.02, P <.05), trait anxiety score (38.20 +/- 6.84 and 32.20 +/- 3.90, P <.05), and depression score (16.65 +/- 8.32 and 8.15 +/- 3.15, P <.05) were significantly higher in the 12- to 18-year age group of epileptic children than in the control group. Among the epilepsy-related factors, whereas epilepsy duration, seizure frequency, and polytherapy were determined to increase anxiety and depression, age of seizure onset, seizure type, and electroencephalographic findings were not related to anxiety and depression. Symptoms of anxiety and depression are common among epileptic children, especially during puberty. The State Trait Anxiety Inventory and Children's Depression Inventory may be used as a tool to provide information to clinicians.