The value of electroencephalography in differential diagnosis of altered mental status in emergency departments.
J Pak Med Assoc. 2014 Aug;64(8):923-7
Authors: Duran L, Balci K, Yardan T, Kati C, Akdemir HU, Karadas S, Altuntas M
OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the value of electroencephalography in patients with altered mental status in emergency departments.
METHODS: Demographical characteristics, types and aetiologies of seizures, and clinical outcomes of the patients were recorded. Patients were divided into 4 groups according to the complaints of admission: findings and symptoms of seizure; stroke and symptoms of stroke-related seizures; syncope; and metabolic abnormalities and other causes of altered mental status. The electroencephalography findings were classified into 3 groups: epileptiform discharges; paroxysmal electroencephalography abnormalities; and background slowing. Electroencephalography abnormalities in each subgroup were evaluated. SPSS 21 was used for statistical analysis.
RESULTS: Of the total 190 patients in the study, 117 (61.6%) had pathological electroencephalography findings. The main reason for electroencephalography in the emergency department was the presence of seizure findings and symptoms in 98 (51.6%) patients. The ratio of electroencephalography abnormality was higher in patients who were admitted with complaints of metabolic abnormality-related consciousness disturbances (p < 0.001). A total of 124 (65.3%) patients had neuroimagings. Electroencephalography abnormalities were found to be significantly higher in patients with neuroimagings compared to those without neuroimagings (p < 0.003).
CONCLUSION: Despite advanced neuroimaging techniques, electroencephalography is still an important tool in the differential diagnosis of altered mental status such as epileptic seizures, metabolic abnormalities, pseudo-seizures and syncope.
PMID: 25252519 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]