Hypersexuality after temporal lobe resection

Amee D. Baird*, Sarah J. Wilson, Peter F. Bladin, Michael M. Saling, David C. Reutens

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Citations (Scopus)


Hypersexuality has occasionally been reported in patients with temporal lobe epilepsy following temporal lobe resection. The mechanism underlying this phenomenon is poorly understood. We describe seven patients who spontaneously reported dramatic postoperative changes in sexual behavior after unilateral temporal lobe resection. Five of the seven patients showed evidence of bilateral temporal lobe abnormalities. All of the patients had significant difficulties with postoperative psychosocial adjustment that preceded the onset of hypersexuality. Five of the patients were completely seizure-free and one reported postoperative auras. Recurrent complex partial seizures occurred at a reduced frequency in one patient after 6 months. In this patient, the period of seizure freedom did not directly correlate with the period of hypersexuality. These cases suggest that hypersexuality following unilateral temporal lobe resection is more likely to occur in the presence of psychosocial difficulties and contralateral temporal lobe abnormalities. Neurophysiological processes associated with seizure cessation alone do not appear to account for postoperative hypersexuality.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)173-181
Number of pages9
JournalEpilepsy and Behavior
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Hypersexuality
  • Kluver-Bucy syndrome
  • Postoperative outcome
  • Seizure surgery
  • Temporal lobe epilepsy


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