What is the role of ambulatory EEG in the diagnosis of psychogenic nonepileptic seizures (PNES)?

Updated: Jul 26, 2018
  • Author: Selim R Benbadis, MD; Chief Editor: Helmi L Lutsep, MD  more...
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Answer

Because of its low sensitivity, routine EEG is not helpful in confirming a diagnosis of PNES. However, repeatedly normal EEG findings, especially in light of frequent attacks and resistance to medications, can be viewed as a red flag.

Ambulatory EEG is increasingly used, it is cost effective, and it can contribute to the diagnosis by recording the habitual episode and documenting the absence of EEG changes.

However, because of the difficulties in conveying the diagnosis (see Treatment), PNES should always be confirmed with EEG video monitoring.


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