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AAN 2022 | Issues concerning the treatment of PNES

William Curt LaFrance Jr, MD MPH, FAAN, FANPA, DFAPA, Brown University, Providence, RI, discusses issues concerning the treatment of patients with functional neurological disorders (FDNs). Prof. LaFrance describes that many patients diagnosed with psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (PNES) have already been on a number of treatments for what was presumed to be epilepsy. These individuals would have been treated with anti-seizure medications that do not help patients with psychogenic non-epileptic seizures. Similarly, typical movement drugs used in Parkinson’s disease or dystonia do not help individuals with functional motor disorders. Prof. LaFrance describes that many patients with psychogenic non-epileptic seizures have comorbidities, including depression, anxiety, or PTSD. Treating those disorders with the appropriate psychotropic medication, coupled with the appropriate psychotherapy, can help patients from a pharmacological perspective. This interview took place at the American Academy of Neurology 2022 Congress in Seattle, WA.