OBJECTIVE: To investigate the association of an indicator of hippocampal function with severity of depression symptoms in temporal lobe epilepsy. METHODS: We evaluated 31 patients with video/EEG-confirmed temporal lobe epilepsy using creatine/N-acetylaspartate ratio maps derived from a previously validated H magnetic resonance spectroscopic imaging (H-MRSI) technique at 4.1 T. We also assessed depression symptoms, epilepsy-related factors, and self-perceived social and vocational disability. We used conservative nonparametric bivariate procedures to determine the correlation of severity of depression symptoms with imaging and clinical variables. RESULTS: The extent of hippocampal H-MRSI abnormalities correlated with severity of depression (Spearman rho = 0.65, p value < 0.001), but other clinical factors did not. CONCLUSION: The extent of hippocampal dysfunction is associated with depression symptoms in temporal lobe epilepsy and may be a more important factor than seizure frequency or degree of disability. ©2007AAN Enterprises, Inc.