A life-threatening situation due to interactions between epilepsy and psychiatric problems
Epilepsy and psychiatric problems can occur simultaneously and can, quite unexpectedly, trigger interactions that may lead to life-threatening situations. This became obvious in the case of a female patient who suddenly developed a status epilepticus while admitted to hospital. The seizure was probably connected with secret self-induced vomiting which led to a low intake of antiepileptic medication. She used the vomiting to control emotionally charged post-traumatic intrusions. Both the vomiting and the number of seizures were triggered by a life event (in this case emigration). In case of epilepsy, early screening for psychopathology seems advisable because there may be interactions with epileptic variables.