The aim of the current study is to explore the stability of verbal memory functioning in a single institution cohort of children with epilepsy (CWE) over time and to identify seizure-related variables that predict improvement, decline, and stagnation. Retrospective chart review was conducted for 39 epilepsy patients (ages 5-19 years) seen for repeat neuropsychological evaluations. Twenty of these patients had epilepsy surgery between evaluations and 19 did not. Memory functioning outcomes included standardized scores from verbal list learning tasks. Findings revealed cross-sectional associations between verbal memory performance with age of seizure onset, overall IQ, and working memory. In particular, earlier age of seizure onset was associated with worse memory performance while higher IQ and working memory were associated with stronger memory performance, but most findings were not significant after Bonferroni correction for multiple comparisons. While approximately 50% of participants demonstrated stable performance across various verbal learning domains, approximately 10-20% demonstrated clinically meaningful decline and 28-38% demonstrated clinically meaningful improvement on at least one memory condition. Direct comparison of surgical vs. non-surgical groups revealed few differences although surgical patients were more likely to demonstrate stable immediate memory performance. These findings underscore the clinical utility of repeat neuropsychological evaluation and need for additional research on predictors of longitudinal memory functioning in patients with epilepsy.

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This post is Copyright: | September 18, 2023
Journal of Pediatric Neuropsychology – Scholars Portal