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Right temporal lobe epilepsy surgery activates suppressed post-traumatic stress disorder 31 years after a robbery

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Hippocampus and amygdala play central roles in the development of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Changes in neurological structures due to surgery leading to PTSD have previously been reported. In this case, we present a patient that develops PTSD right after epilepsy surgery in the right temporal lobe. The case adds knowledge to the mechanisms of storage of PTSD memories. A 56-year-old male suffering from refractory temporal lobe epilepsy was treated with an anteromesial temporal lobe resection on the right side. A few weeks after the surgery, he developed strong PTSD symptoms. They included flashbacks from a robbery he was subjected to three decades ago when he was 25 years old. In addition, he suffered from hypervigilance, irritability, and avoidance behavior. Psychotherapy eventually eased his symptoms. No previous disorders were recorded. No psychiatry symptoms were present before surgery. This case is one of few reports on the sudden occurrence of PTSD after epilepsy-surgery in the form of right-sided anteromesial temporal lobe resection. The disorder may not have been detected if not included in the Danish Epilepsy-Surgery-Protocol, among them both the pre-surgery psychiatric management and in the post-operative monitoring.

Original languageEnglish
JournalActa Neurochirurgica
Volume164
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)549-554
Number of pages6
ISSN0001-6268
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2022

Bibliographical note

© 2022. The Author(s), under exclusive licence to Springer-Verlag GmbH Austria, part of Springer Nature.

    Research areas

  • Adult, Amygdala/surgery, Epilepsy, Epilepsy, Temporal Lobe/surgery, Humans, Male, Middle Aged, Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic/diagnosis, Temporal Lobe/diagnostic imaging

ID: 77649230