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December 23/30, 1998

Contempo 1998: New Treatments for Epilepsy

Author Affiliations

Margaret A.WinkerMDIndividualAuthorPhil B.FontanarosaMD, Senior EditorsIndividualAuthor

JAMA. 1998;280(24):2073-2074. doi:10-1001/pubs.JAMA-ISSN-0098-7484-280-24-jbk1223

To the Editor.—In their excellent overview of new treatments for epilepsy, Drs Herman and Pedley1 mention that there are no published reports of the use of intravenous valproate sodium to treat status epilepticus. Although valproate sodium has not been approved in the United States for use in treating status epilepticus, intravenous valproic acid has been successfully used to treat partial and generalized status epilepticus (absence, myoclonic, and tonic-clonic seizures) in 23 patients.2 In 19 of the 23 patients, status epilepticus regressed within 20 minutes of the intravenous bolus of 15 mg/kg followed by a 5- to 6-hour infusion of 1 mg/kg per hour, starting 30 minutes after the bolus (the infusion rate of the bolus was not specified).

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