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Epilepsy

Treatment for auditory hallucinations

07/07/2009

Question:

My mother had a stroke almost 6 years ago and it has caused temporal lobe epilepsy with auditory hallucinations. We were told by her psychiatrist last week that nothing could be done to help her because the problem was organic and not chemical??? I really need your advice because the voices that she hears are very derogatory and it scares her to death. I am afraid that she cannot continue living like this and that she might take her own life. She is very paranoid about everyone and has started being paranoid about me which makes it very hard to help her at this point. I am not ready to accept that this is it for her, there must be something that can be done to help her. I have read about repetitiv in ade transcranial magnetic stimulation, would that help. She is 99 % depressed because of this. She is at the point where she cannot make the difference from what is real and what is not. Please, I really need to advice. She has tried many different meds, I know of one, Tegretol which I thought was helping.

thanks

Answer:

The first step is to determine if the hallucinations are seizures before determining how to treat them. I would strongly consider asking about video/EEG monitoring. This test will confirm if the hallucinations are seizures and then your physicians can choose the best treatment for you.

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Response by:

David M Ficker, MD David M Ficker, MD
Associate Professor
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati