What is complex partial status epilepticus (CPSE)?

Updated: Feb 13, 2018
  • Author: Julie L Roth, MD; Chief Editor: Stephen A Berman, MD, PhD, MBA  more...
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Complex partial SE is rare. Although many cases of prolonged complex partial SE without long-term neurologic sequelae have been described, negative outcomes can occur. No criteria for differentiating the cases associated with a poor outcome are known.

Complex partial SE that arises in the limbic cortex (eg, mesial temporal lobe) causes signs and symptoms such as staring, unresponsiveness, automatisms, atypical anxiety, rising abdominal symptoms, déjà vu, or more profound stupor. Complex partial SE of frontal-lobe origin may produce clinical symptoms indistinguishable from cases of temporal-lobe origin.

While isolated complex partial seizures usually originate in the temporal lobe, complex partial SE usually has an extratemporal focus. Shorvon believes that at least 15% of patients with complex partial epilepsy have a history of nonconvulsive SE. [24]

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