Publications by authors named "Marisara Dieppa"

7 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Non-lesional mesial temporal lobe epilepsy requires bilateral invasive evaluation.

Epilepsy Behav Rep 2021 27;15:100441. Epub 2021 Mar 27.

Department of Neurology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, 5323 Harry Hines Blvd, Dallas, TX 75390-8508, USA.

Purpose: Mesial temporal lobe epilepsy (MTLE) usually responds well to surgical treatment, although in non-lesional cases up to 50% of patients experience seizure relapse. The possibility of bilateral independent seizure onset should be considered as a reason for epilepsy surgery failure.

Methods: In a cohort of 177 patients who underwent invasive presurgical evaluation with stereo-tactically placed electrodes in two level four epilepsy centers, 29 had non-lesional MTLE. Invasive evaluation results are described.

Results: Among 29 patients with non-lesional MRI and mesial temporal lobe seizure onset recorded during stereo-EEG (SEEG) evaluation, four patients with unilateral preimplantation hypothesis had independent bilateral mesial temporal seizures on SEEG despite of unilateral non-invasive evaluation data. Three of these patients were treated with bitemporal responsive neurostimulator system (RNS). Independent bilateral mesial temporal seizures have been confirmed on RNS ECoG (electrocorticography). The fourth patient underwent right anterior temporal lobectomy.

Conclusion: We propose that patients with non-lesional mesial temporal lobe epilepsy would benefit from bilateral invasive evaluation of mesial temporal structures to predict those patients who would be at most risk for surgical failure. Neurostimulaiton could be an initial treatment option for patients with independent bitemporal seizure onset.
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March 2021

Physical activity status and quality of life in patients with epilepsy - Survey from level four epilepsy monitoring units.

Epilepsy Res 2021 Jul 9;173:106639. Epub 2021 Apr 9.

Department of Neurology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, 5323 Harry Hines Blvd, TX, 75390, USA. Electronic address:

Purpose: People with epilepsy (PWE) tend to have sedentary lifestyles which may predispose them to a lower perceived quality of life (QOL). Moreover, the relationship between physical activity (PA) and QOL in populations of PWE with high disease burden has been under-studied. The goal of this study was to evaluate PA level and its impact on health-related QOL in PWE who were admitted to Level-4 epilepsy monitoring units (EMU).

Methods: In this prospective observational study, 200 patients from two EMUs in Dallas, Texas completed the following standard surveys: Rapid Assessment of Physical Activity (RAPA), the Quality of Life in Epilepsy (QOLIE-31), Patient Health Questionnaire-9 (PHQ-9), and Generalized Anxiety Disorder 7-item (GAD-7) questionnaire. Information on self-reported epilepsy history, severity of disease, and socioeconomic status were also collected. The diagnosis of epilepsy was confirmed by video-EEG monitoring.

Results: Among the 200 who completed the survey, 113 had a diagnosis of epilepsy and 109 of them completed the RAPA. Ninety-two (84 %) of these PWE reported a sedentary level of physical activity (RAPA < 6) and 16 % reported an active level (RAPA ≥ 6). Self-reported QOL was slightly higher in PWE with an active level of PA compared to PWE with a sedentary level of PA (63.8 ± 15.0 vs 53.7 ± 17.9, p = 0.07), even though there was no difference in the severity of self-reported mood symptoms. After controlling for employment and seizure frequency, physical activity level measured by RAPA score was also positively related to QOL (r = 0.39, p = 0.01) and negatively correlated with anxiety symptoms (r = -0.28, p = 0.02) and depression symptoms (r = -0.25, p = 0.04).

Conclusion: The majority of PWE in this survey reported sedentary lifestyles despite most of them being young to middle-aged adults. Higher PA level was associated with fewer self-reported mood symptoms and higher QOL. In conjunction with the literature, these results suggest that PWE with a wide range of disease burden should be encouraged to participate in regular exercise to potentially improve QOL.
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July 2021

A proof-of-concept trial of a community-based aerobic exercise program for individuals with traumatic brain injury.

Brain Inj 2021 Jan 1;35(2):233-240. Epub 2021 Jan 1.

Department of Neurology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX, USA.

: To assess the feasibility of conducting an aerobic exercise training study in a community setting for individuals with traumatic brain injury (TBI): This is a prospective, randomized, and controlled study. Nine participants (three moderate-to-severe and six mild TBI) were randomized to a community-based 3-month individualized aerobic exercise training program (AET). Seven participants (four moderate-to-severe, three mild TBI) were randomized to a stretching and toning program (SAT). Cardiorespiratory fitness (CRF) level was assessed with peak oxygen uptake (VO) testing.: After 3 months of training, the AET trended toward improved VO when compared with the SAT group (8% vs - 4%, = .059) with a large effect size of 1.27. Only 50% of participants in the AET group completed more than 70% of the assigned exercise sessions. No adverse events were reported. Both the AET and SAT groups reported small improvements in self-reported mood symptoms, including depression, anxiety, and anger.: It is feasible to conduct an exercise training study and improve CRF for persons with TBI in community settings with structured exercise protocols. However, exploring methods to enhance adherence is crucial for future exercise clinical trials to improve brain health in this population.
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January 2021

Impaired cerebral blood flow regulation in chronic traumatic brain injury.

Brain Res 2020 09 4;1743:146924. Epub 2020 Jun 4.

Department of Neurology and Neurotherapeutics, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, 5323 Harry Hines Blvd, TX 75390, USA; Institute for Exercise and Environmental Medicine, Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas, 8200 Walnut Hill Ln, Dallas, TX 75231, USA.

Baroreflex sensitivity (BRS) and cerebral autoregulation (CA) play an important role in maintaining constant cerebral blood flow (CBF) during systemic changes in blood pressure (BP). Impaired BRS and CA have been reported in acute traumatic brain injury (TBI) which may also contribute to secondary injury and poorer recovery after acute TBI; however, their status during chronic stages remains elusive. Thus, the goal of this study is to determine whether cardiac BRS and dynamic CA (dCA) were impaired during the chronic stage in patients with single TBI and persistent neurological symptoms. Twenty-two subjects with blunt head TBI ≥ 6 months prior to the study (13 mild and 9 moderate to severe TBI) and persistent symptoms on Rivermead Post-Concussion Symptoms Questionnaire at enrollment were compared to 22 age/sex/fitness level-matched healthy control subjects. Beat-to-beat changes in heart rate, BP, and CBF velocity were measured at rest and during a repeated sit-stand maneuver. Hemodynamic variability, dCA, and cardiac BRS were calculated using spectral and transfer function analyses. We found dCA phase in low frequency (LF) range of 0.07-0.20 Hz was lower in subjects with TBI than in control subjects (0.51 ± 0.19 vs. 0.63 ± 0.26, p = 0.043) during the resting condition. Among subjects with TBI, the lower dCA phase in LF was correlated with poorer performance on measures of cognitive function (all p < 0.05). These findings suggested that subjects with chronic TBI showed impaired dCA which may contribute to persistent cognitive impairment. Cerebrovascular measures may provide a physiological measure to evaluate interventions for chronic TBI and accompanying functional deficits.
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September 2020

Comparison of psychiatric comorbidities and impact on quality of life in patients with epilepsy or psychogenic nonepileptic spells.

Epilepsy Behav 2020 01 20;102:106649. Epub 2019 Nov 20.

Department of Neurology and Neurotherapeutics, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, 5323 Harry Hines Blvd, TX 75390, USA. Electronic address:

Objectives: Psychiatric comorbidity is common in people with epilepsy (PWE) and psychogenic nonepileptic spells (PNES). These comorbidities can be detrimental to quality of life (QOL) and are often underdiagnosed and undertreated. Some types of epilepsy, such as focal temporal lobe epilepsy (TLE), have been associated with higher rates of psychiatric comorbidity. This study examined the impact of psychiatric comorbidity on QOL in patients admitted to two level 4 epilepsy monitoring units (EMUs).

Methods: In this prospective observational study, 200 patients admitted to two level 4 EMUs completed standardized surveys including the Quality of Life in Epilepsy (QOLIE-31-P), Generalized Anxiety Disorder 7-item (GAD-7), Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ-9), and Beck Depression Inventory-II (BDI-II). Hierarchal multiple regression was performed to assess impact on QOL.

Results: Of the 200 participants, 113 had a diagnosis of epilepsy, 36 had a diagnosis of PNES, and 51 were excluded for nondiagnostic evaluation or dual diagnosis. Of those with epilepsy, 65 had TLE, 28 had focal extratemporal lobe epilepsy (ETLE), and 20 had nonfocal epilepsy. Patients with PNES had higher self-reported anxiety and depression levels (GAD-7: p = 0.04, PHQ-9: p < 0.01; BDI-II: p < 0.01) but similar QOL to PWE (p = 0.78). Using hierarchal multiple regression, symptoms of anxiety and depression were significant predictors of lower QOL in PWE but not in patients with PNES. There was no difference in QOL in those with ETLE and TLE.

Conclusions: Our findings suggest that self-reported anxiety and depression symptoms are common in patients admitted to level 4 EMUs regardless of diagnosis and play an important role in predicting QOL in PWE. Our findings emphasize the importance of routinely screening all EMU patients for psychiatric comorbidity.
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January 2020

Traumatic brain injury history is associated with an earlier age of dementia onset in autopsy-confirmed Alzheimer's disease.

Neuropsychology 2018 05 1;32(4):410-416. Epub 2018 Feb 1.

Department of Psychiatry.

Objective: To evaluate whether a history of traumatic brain injury (TBI) with reported loss of consciousness (LOC) is a risk factor for earlier onset of Alzheimer's disease (AD) in an autopsy-confirmed sample.

Method: Data from 2,133 participants with autopsy-confirmed AD (i.e., at least Braak neurofibrillary tangle stages III to VI and CERAD neuritic plaque score moderate to frequent) were obtained from the National Alzheimer's Coordinating Center (NACC). Participants were categorized by presence/absence of self-reported remote (i.e., >1 year prior to their first Alzheimer's Disease Center visit) history of TBI with LOC (TBI+ vs. TBI-). Analyses of Covariance (ANCOVA) controlling for sex, education, and race compared groups on clinician-estimated age of symptom onset and age of diagnosis.

Results: Average age of onset was 2.34 years earlier (p = .01) for the TBI+ group (n = 194) versus the TBI- group (n = 1900). Dementia was diagnosed on average 2.83 years earlier (p = .002) in the TBI+ group (n = 197) versus the TBI- group (n = 1936). Using more stringent neuropathological criteria (i.e., Braak stages V-VI and CERAD frequent), both age of AD onset and diagnosis were 3.6 years earlier in the TBI+ group (both p's < .001).

Conclusions: History of TBI with reported LOC appears to be a risk factor for earlier AD onset. This is the first study to use autopsy-confirmed cases, supporting previous investigations that used clinical criteria for the diagnosis of AD. Further investigation as to possible underlying mechanisms of association is needed. (PsycINFO Database Record
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May 2018

Multiple sclerosis disease progression and paradichlorobenzene: a tale of mothballs and toilet cleaner.

JAMA Neurol 2014 Feb;71(2):228-32

Department of Neurology, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas, Dallas2Neurology Section, VA North Texas Health Care System, Medical Service, Dallas.

Importance: Environmental factors are thought to be critical in the initiation and perpetuation of multiple sclerosis disease activity.

Observations: We describe the case of a woman in her late 30s with a diagnosis of relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis, who continued to accumulate neurological disability despite long-term natalizumab treatment. The patient continued to have visual symptoms, left leg weakness, and gait instability. In addition, she subacutely developed an encephalopathy. Our investigations revealed that the patient had a long-standing history of chewing on toilet bowl deodorizing cakes. The main ingredient in this product is 99.9% paradichlorobenzene, which is also used in mothballs.

Conclusions And Relevance: This case illustrates that environmental causes for neurological deterioration should be investigated in patients with multiple sclerosis who display a rapidly progressive disease course and in whom potent pharmacotherapies fail. One possible cause is the ingestion of paradichlorobenzene-containing mothballs and toilet cleaners.
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February 2014