Phenytoin, Levetiracetam, and Pregabalin in the Acute Management of Refractory Status Epilepticus in

Abstract Background There were nearly 700,000 patients in the United States in 2010 living with brain tumor diagnoses. The incidence of seizures in this population is as high as 70% and is historically difficult to control. Approximately 30–40% of brain tumors patients who present with status epilepticus (SE) will not respond to typical therapy consisting of benzodiazepines and phenytoin (PHT), resulting in patients with refractory status epilepticus (RSE). RSE is usually treated with anesthetic doses of propofol or midazolam infusions. This therapy can have significant risk, particularly in patients with cancer.

Methods A retrospective chart review was performed on 23 patients with primary or metastatic brain tumors whose SE was treated with intravenous PHT, levetiracetam (LEV), and oral pregabalin (PGB).

Results In all the patients under study, PHT or LEV was used as first-line therapy. PGB was typically used as third-line treatment. The median daily dose of PGB was 375 mg (usually divided BID or TID), and the median daily dose of LEV 3000 mg (usually divided BID). Cessation of SE was seen in 16/23 (70%) after administration of PHT, LEV, and PGB. SE was aborted, on average, 24 h after addition of the third antiepileptic drug. Only one patient in the responder group required intubation. Mortality rate was zero in the responder group. No adverse reactions to this medication regimen were observed.

Conclusion Our study suggests that the administration of PHT, LEV, and PGB in brain tumor patients with RSE is safe and highly effective.

  • Content Type Journal Article
  • Category Original Article
  • Pages 1-5
  • DOI 10.1007/s12028-011-9626-4
  • Authors
    • Christa B. Swisher, Division of Neurology, Department of Medicine, Duke University Medical Center (DUMC), Box 2900, Durham, NC 27710, USA
    • Meghana Doreswamy, Division of Neurology, Department of Medicine, Duke University Medical Center (DUMC), Box 2900, Durham, NC 27710, USA
    • Krista J. Gingrich, Division of Neurology, Department of Medicine, Duke University Medical Center (DUMC), Box 2900, Durham, NC 27710, USA
    • James J. Vredenburgh, Division of Neurology, Department of Medicine, Duke University Medical Center (DUMC), Box 2900, Durham, NC 27710, USA
    • Brad J. Kolls, Division of Neurology, Department of Medicine, Duke University Medical Center (DUMC), Box 2900, Durham, NC 27710, USA

http://www.springerlink.com/content/jx02k34581u42512/

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