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A prospective multi-centre open label study of the use of levetiracetam as add-on treatment in patients with epilepsy and intellectual disabilities

Beavis, Janine M., Meek, Andrea Janine, Felce, David John and Kerr, Michael Patrick 2009. A prospective multi-centre open label study of the use of levetiracetam as add-on treatment in patients with epilepsy and intellectual disabilities. Seizure - European Journal of Epilepsy 18 (4) , pp. 279-284. 10.1016/j.seizure.2008.11.001

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Purpose To investigate the efficacy and safety of levetiracetam in adults with intellectual disabilities who have uncontrolled partial or generalised epilepsy. Methods An open label prospective study compared seizure frequency, adverse effects, participant challenging behaviour, carers’ concerns about epilepsy and perceived participant quality of life between a baseline observation prior to the use of levetiracetam and follow-up observations at 3, 6, 9 and 12 months afterwards. Challenging behaviour, carers’ concerns about epilepsy and perceived quality of life were assessed using standardized measures. Results Recruitment was low (n = 42). Six participants did not enter the trial. Two participants withdrew at initiation of treatment, one with seizures worsening and one with a rash, and a further one later on with a rash; all were felt to be drug related. Three other participants withdrew for independent reasons. Twelve months follow-up was achieved for 26 participants (62%) and at least 6 months follow-up for 30 participants (71%). Median seizure frequency reduced from baseline levels of 4.2 per week to average post-intervention levels of 2.2 for the 30 participants (z = −2.53, p < .05). No overall change in challenging behaviour was found, although increases in behaviour problems were reported for a minority. Patient concerns about seizures and medical treatment declined and perceived quality of life relating to seizure severity improved whilst that related to behaviour deteriorated. Increased adverse effects were reported immediately after initiation of levetiracetam but declined towards baseline levels by study completion. Discussion Conclusions must remain tentative due to methodological weaknesses. Further investigation of the possible changes found here within a controlled study is merited.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Medicine
MRC Centre for Neuropsychiatric Genetics and Genomics (CNGG)
Subjects: R Medicine > R Medicine (General)
R Medicine > RC Internal medicine > RC0321 Neuroscience. Biological psychiatry. Neuropsychiatry
Uncontrolled Keywords: Epilepsy; Intellectual disabilities; Levetiracetam; Seizure frequency
Publisher: Elsevier
ISSN: 1059-1311
Last Modified: 10 Oct 2017 14:10

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