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Understanding post-traumatic stress symptoms in people with epilepsy

Study title

Understanding post-traumatic stress symptoms in people with epilepsy


Institute of Psychology, Health and Society, University of Liverpool, UK

About the study

Many research studies claim that people with temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE) have higher tendencies of experiencing anxiety and depression, compared with people with frontal lobe epilepsy (FLE). People with TLE are more likely to obtain a diagnosis and get treatment for 

As we know, seizures are only one part of epilepsy. The National Health Service acknowledges that people with epilepsy can experience anxiety and/or depression.  However, there is still a lack of research into trauma symptoms* in people with epilepsy, even though these might affect up to 20 in every 100 people with epilepsy.

*The term ‘trauma symptoms’ refers to a range of possible emotional and psychological symptoms that may be associated with experiences related to epilepsy. These could be:

  • Reliving or re-experiencing an event that a person with epilepsy might find traumatic, for example having a seizure or going to an accident and emergency department
  • Avoidance of situations that may cause distress and remind a person of an issue or issues related to their epilepsy
  • Symptoms of low mood/anxiety

In this research, we would like to explore some of the things that may contribute to the development and maintenance of trauma symptoms in people with epilepsy. We hope the results will help us develop an intervention to ease trauma symptoms in people with epilepsy, and help improve their quality of life.

When will this study be recruiting?

Now until September 2018

What will participants be asked to do?

We will ask you to answer two online questionnaires. The first one will be as soon as you enrol. The second one will be three months later. We will send you an email when it’s time to complete the second one.

The questionnaires will ask you about:

  • You and your epilepsy
  • Your experience of possible symptoms of trauma
  • Any coping strategies for trauma you might use

The questionnaires will each take about 20 minutes to do. Everyone who takes part will be given the opportunity to be entered into a prize draw.

Who can take part?

You can take part if you:

  • Have epilepsy (of any type)
  • Are aged 18 or over
  • Are able to fill in an online questionnaire in English, by yourself
  • Live in the UK

Who is conducting the research?

The study is being conducted by Hannah Arhinful, Masters of Research Methods in Psychology student at the University of Liverpool. She is being supervised by Dr Peter Fisher and Dr Adam Noble from the Institute of Psychology, Health and Society Sciences of Liverpool.

Who has reviewed this study?

The study has been reviewed and approved by the University of Liverpool's Central University Research Ethics Committee (Ref no: 2830).


If you would like to find out more information or take part, please go to the following website: https://iphsliv.eu.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_7P1vDuvZZxdc32d

Event Date: 
Tuesday 12 May 2015 - 13:49

Comments: read the 1 comments or add yours


There are lots of reminders of my epilepsy and it seems important to try and work out how to stop thinking negatively about it all the time

Submitted by maggie on