Quality of life in childhood epilepsy validating the qolce

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Comprehensive epilepsy care integrates behavioral health and encourages enhanced self/family management of epilepsy and its comorbidities.

One of the challenges to providing comprehensive epilepsy care is lack of availability or integration of mental health resources.

In fact, both youths and parents find these mental health symptoms and challenges to be more bothersome and having a more robust impact on quality of life (QOL) than seizures.

Comprehensive epilepsy care Overlap between behavioral health symptoms and common epilepsy-specific factors (ie, adverse effects of antiepileptic drugs, seizure semiology), can create diagnostic challenges for epilepsy health care providers.

Up to 50% of youths with epilepsy experience developmental (eg, autism, ADHD), psychiatric (depression, anxiety), and/or neurocognitive comorbidities.

Even in youth without comorbid clinical diagnoses, epilepsy can impact daily functioning such as social difficulties, worries about seizures, activity level, stigma, and treatment nonadherence.

The inclusion of a behavioral health provider on an epilepsy team assists with seamless transition to necessary behavioral health services.

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New quality indicators approved by the American Academy of Neurology recommend routine assessment of psychosocial functioning at each epilepsy encounter for the delivery of optimal care and better outcomes for persons with epilepsy.

It can be incorporated into epilepsy care by using a 3-tiered health promotion approach (Figure).

youth and asking patients and families about their self-management awareness and needs.

Self/family management can encompass seizure control, behaviors or steps taken to prevent or cope with the consequences of epilepsy and its comorbidities in the context of daily life, the complex roles and behaviors of caregivers, promotion to increasingly independent self-management, navigation of social, health, and community systems, and partnering with the youth’s educational team.

Behavioral health screening should not be avoided because of its potentially overwhelming nature or lack of resources.

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