ARCH Lab Contributes to a Study of Depression Symptoms in Children with Epilepsy

The ARCH lab contributed to a study entitled, “Longitudinal trajectories of depression symptoms in children with epilepsy”. This study examined depression symptoms in 477 children with epilepsy, using self- and caregiver-reported symptoms of depression. The primary objective of this study was to examine the presence of depression symptoms in this population and identify potential changes over time in depression symptoms in youth with epilepsy. Depression symptoms were assessed using the Child Depression Inventory Short-Form (CDI-S), a widely used measure of depression symptoms in children. Children and their caregivers completed 3 assessments across a period of 28 months.

First, results indicated that reported symptoms of depression were found to be comparable between child and parent reports. Further, findings from this study found that self- and caregiver-reported symptoms of depression were generally low and stable over an extended follow-up period (28 months). Severity of depression symptoms was not related to demographic characteristics, seizure severity, age of seizure onset or duration of epilepsy. Additionally, in those children who reported greater symptoms of depression, symptoms were found to normalize over the repeated assessment of symptoms.

Taken together, these results highlight the importance and value of repeated measures and the need for assessments over time.