Patients who experience episodes with a transient disturbance in
perception, memory, mood, and level of anxiety are frequently encountered
by neurologists, psychiatrists, and psychologists. The possibilities for
differential diagnosis of these episodes include partial complex epilepsy,
psychogenic seizures, panic disorder, dissociative states, migraine, and
transient global amnesia, among others. The clinical history may be vague
and confusing, making it difficult to determine definitively the etiology
of the events. This article describes a spectrum of paroxysmal disorders
involving limbic structures, highlighting the clinical features and
assessment techniques that aid in diagnosis and treatment.
Clinical-anatomic correlations are provided whenever possible.