Health

Study finds improved medication for treating epileptic seizures in children

ANI | April 21, 2019 12:11 PM
Representative Image

Washington D.C. [USA] Apr 21 (ANI): Researchers have recently found that prescribing two medications -benzodiazepines and phenytoin - one after the other, could help treat epileptic seizures in children.

The study, published in the journal The Lancet, shows that giving said medications halved the number of children sent to intensive care.

Prolonged epileptic seizures are the most common neurological emergencies in children seen by hospitals. The seizures are potentially fatal: up to five per cent of affected children die, and a third suffer long-term complications from brain damage.

In severe seizures, the first line of treatment (benzodiazepines) only stops the seizures in 40 to 60 per cent of patients. Before this study, the second line treatment was the anticonvulsant drug phenytoin, but until now this practice had never been scrutinised in a robust major randomised controlled trial. Also, phenytoin was known to have a number of serious complications.

In this study, researchers compared phenytoin with newer anti-convulsant levetiracetam for second line treatment of seizures.

Levetiracetam is used routinely as a daily medication to prevent seizures but has not been properly tested against phenytoin for treatment of severe prolonged seizures.

The research involved 233 child patients aged between three months and 16 years. Researchers found that when given individually, the drugs are as good as each other: both had a moderate success rate (50-60 per cent) at stopping a prolonged seizure.

But strikingly, treatment with one drug and then the other increased the success rate of stopping a seizure to approximately 75 per cent.

Previously, children who continued seizing after phenytoin then needed to be intubated, sedated and placed on a ventilator in intensive care.

"This study has now given us robust evidence to manage children with prolonged seizures without reverting to intubation and intensive care," said Dr. Dalziel, lead researcher.

"By controlling seizures in the emergency department we will increase the chance of these children recovering more quickly and returning back to their normal lives," he added.

"This study is going to profoundly improve treatment for children who are critically ill with epilepsy around the world," said Professor Franz Babl, co-researcher. (ANI)

Have something to say? Post your comment
Must Read
Himachal Pradesh: Spoons, knife, toothbrush, screwdriver found in man's stomach
Himachal Pradesh: Spoons, knife, toothbrush, screwdriver found in man's stomach
Staff crunch affects PSPCL functioning in Nakodar sub urban division
Villager arrested for stealing coin box from religious place
Webcasting scripts new success story in ensuring free, fair and transparent polls
Webcasting scripts new success story in ensuring free, fair and transparent polls
Sidhu’s out of turn outbursts amount to sabotage: Brahm Mohindra
Sidhu’s out of turn outbursts amount to sabotage: Brahm Mohindra
Senior Congress leader Tajinder Singh Bittu cast his vote
Senior Congress leader Tajinder Singh Bittu cast his vote
Chaudhary Santokh Singh along with his family cast their votes in Phillaur
Chaudhary Santokh Singh along with his family cast their votes in Phillaur
957 booths in Jalandhar to have webcasting today- general observer and DC
957 booths in Jalandhar to have webcasting today- general observer and DC
CPMF, Micro observers and webcasting at all 439 vulnerable polling booths for free, fair and transparent polls
CPMF, Micro observers and webcasting at all 439 vulnerable polling booths for free, fair and transparent polls
592 Polling Parties Dispatched For Polling Booths In The District
592 Polling Parties Dispatched For Polling Booths In The District
First voters from first time voter, PWD and senior citizen category to be awarded certificate by district administration
First voters from first time voter, PWD and senior citizen category to be awarded certificate by district administration
My wife would never lie: Navjot Singh on wife's claim against Amarinder Singh
My wife would never lie: Navjot Singh on wife's claim against Amarinder Singh