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Lateralized abnormality in the EEG of persistently violent psychiatric inpatients

  • A. Convit
    Correspondence
    Address reprint requests to: Kirby Forensic Psychiatric Center, Research Department, Ward's Island, New York, NY 10035
    Affiliations
    From the Nathan Kline Institute for Psychiatric Research, Kirby Forensic Psychiatric Center, and Manhattan Psychiatric Center, New York, NY, USA
    Search for articles by this author
  • P. Czobor
    Correspondence
    Address reprint requests to: Kirby Forensic Psychiatric Center, Research Department, Ward's Island, New York, NY 10035
    Affiliations
    From the Nathan Kline Institute for Psychiatric Research, Kirby Forensic Psychiatric Center, and Manhattan Psychiatric Center, New York, NY, USA
    Search for articles by this author
  • J. Volavka
    Correspondence
    Address reprint requests to: Kirby Forensic Psychiatric Center, Research Department, Ward's Island, New York, NY 10035
    Affiliations
    From the Nathan Kline Institute for Psychiatric Research, Kirby Forensic Psychiatric Center, and Manhattan Psychiatric Center, New York, NY, USA
    Search for articles by this author
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      Abstract

      Twenty-one consecutive right-handed male psychiatric inpatients treated on a unit designed for the management of violent behavior were given computerized EEGs. We recorded their violent behaviors, the number of staff interventions needed to control their behavior, and their medications. The number of instances of violence as well as the number of staff interventions were related to increased delta band activity and to decreased alpha band activity in the temporal and the parietooccipital areas. These relationships were independent of the current medications and of the length of stay on the special unit. Furthermore, our results demonstrate that violence is very significantly related to the hemispheric asymmetry in EEG for the frontotemporal derivations. With increased levels of violence there was a greater level of delta power in the left compared with the right.
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