Researchers have found provocative evidence that the brain dysfunction that underlies epilepsy may also determine whether people are at risk for suicide. The study, published online October 10, 2005 in the Annals of Neurology, also suggests that depression and suicide may have different brain mechanisms.
"For reasons that are not understood, depression both increases the risk for developing epilepsy and is also common among people with epilepsy who experience many seizures," said lead author Dale C. Hesdorffer, Ph.D., of the Gertrude Sergievsky Center at Columbia University.
It has commonly been assumed that the difficulties associated with living with epilepsy could provoke depression, and in some cases, an increased risk of suicide, the authors write. But is harder to explain the opposite findings, that people who develop depression have a higher risk of later experiencing a first seizure.
David Greenberg | EurekAlert!
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