Genital and sexual manifestations in drug-resistant partial epilepsy

Addolorata Mascia, Giancarlo Di Gennaro, Vincenzo Esposito, Liliana G. Grammaldo, Giulio N. Meldolesi, Teresa Giampà, Fabio Sebastiano, Carolina Falco, Paolo Onorati, Mario Manfredi, Giampaolo Cantore, Pier Paolo Quarato

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Genital and sexual manifestations represent rare clinical phenomena during or after focal seizures. The semiology of these types of automatisms is controversial. In particular, it is unclear whether temporal or frontal structures are involved in their generation and whether these clinical manifestations have a potential lateralizing value. In this view, from a population of 212 consecutive patients with drug resistant focal epilepsy referred to us for presurgical assessment, we retrospectively identified 24 patients with genital ictal manifestations. We evaluated the incidence of these behaviours, the clinical semiology, the associated symptoms/signs with the corresponding ictal EEG findings and their potential role in lateralizing the epileptogenic zone. Our results indicate that ictal genital automatisms are possible in seizures originating from temporal lobe and they cannot be attributed exclusively to frontal lobe seizures. In particular, the most frequent genital automatisms consist in subtle phenomena while hypermotoric behaviour, such as pelvic rhythmic movements are quite rare. No lateralizing value for genital automatisms was disclosed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)133-138
Number of pages6
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2005


  • Epilepsy surgery
  • Frontal lobe epilepsy
  • Genital and sexual automatisms
  • Temporal lobe epilepsy
  • Video-EEG monitoring

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Neurology
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Neurology
  • Psychology(all)


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