12 new epilepsy drugs usher in ‘era of abundance’

MAYWOOD, Ill. — A dozen new epilepsy drugs are giving doctors and patients more options, but making treatment decisions more complex, a Loyola epilepsy specialist reports in the journal Neurologic Clinics.
“Clinicians practice in an era of abundan…

Newer Epilepsy Drug Has Worse Side Effects Than Older Drug

Two commonly prescribed epilepsy drugs have varied cognitive side effects on patients, report doctors from Georgetown University Medical Center. Their findings are published in the May 13 issue of the journal Neurology. In a double-blind, randomized study, researchers looked at 2 drugs, valproate–released in 1978 for the treatment of epileptic seizures, and topiramate, approved by the FDA in late 1996. Each drug was added to carbamazepine, a standard epilepsy treatment, and then given to patients with epilepsy. The cognitive effects on those patients taking topiramate were slightly, although noticeably, worse than those taking the older valproate for a subset of patients.

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