Multimorbidity in people with epilepsy

Athanasios Gaitatzis, Azeem Majeed

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Multimorbidity is an emerging priority in healthcare due to associations with the ageing population, frailty, polypharmacy, health and social care demands. It affects 60-70% of adults and 80% of children with epilepsy. Neurodevelopmental conditions are commonly seen in children with epilepsy, while cancer, cardiovascular and neurodegenerative conditions often afflict older people with epilepsy. Mental health problems are common across the lifespan. Genetic, environmental, social and lifestyle factors contribute to multimorbidity and its consequences. Multimorbid people with epilepsy (PWE) are at higher risk of depression and suicide, premature death, suffer lower health-related quality of life, and require more hospital admissions and health care costs. The best management of multimorbid PWE requires a paradigm shift from the traditional single disease-single comorbidity approach and a refocus on a person-centred approach. Improvements in health care must be informed by assessing the burden of multimorbidity associated with epilepsy, delineating disease clusters, and measuring the effects on health outcomes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)136-145
Number of pages10
Early online date29 Mar 2023
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2023
Externally publishedYes

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