Frequent refractory seizures may cause cognitive deterioration when they present at an early age, especially in infants. The findings of previous studies designed to examine the impact of repetitive seizures on cognition in adolescents and adults, however, have shown wide variation. We analyzed the data of neuropsychological evaluations of patients before they underwent temporal lobe resection because of refractory seizure disorder in our institution from 1998 to 2001. Forty-four consecutive patients aged 12-48 years underwent a comprehensive neuropsychological evaluation that included a battery of selected visual and verbal memory tests. Statistical analysis revealed no significant correlation between disease-related parameters, such as age of onset, duration of active disease, estimated cumulative number of complex partial seizures and secondarily generalized seizures, and the results of neuropsychological tests. These findings support the hypothesis that factors other than repetitive seizures are responsible for cognitive dysfunction among adolescents and adults.