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Complex partial seizures linked to creativity

1 July, 2002

People with complex partial seizures do better in tests involving creativity, according to a report presented to the European Neurological Society.

Researchers at the Guelhane Military Medical Academy in Turkey evaluated 30 men with epilepsy and 36 men without the condition. The men were asked to use fragmented parts of a drawing to create a picture of their own.

The research leader, Dr Erdem Togrol, said that 7 men in the group had complex partial seizures and there was a tendency for them to have higher scores. He noted that people such as Vincent van Gogh and Lewis Carroll have posthumously been diagnosed as having CPE, as well as others such as Alexander the Great and Vladimir Lenin.

Dr Togrol suggested that more tests using a larger group of people of both sexes should be undertaken.