Levetiracetam May Be More Effective for Late-Onset Partial Epilepsy | Epilepsy and Seizures | JAMA Neurology | JAMA Network
[Skip to Navigation]
Access to paid content on this site is currently suspended due to excessive activity being detected from your IP address Please contact the publisher to request reinstatement.
Original Contribution
December 2002

Levetiracetam May Be More Effective for Late-Onset Partial Epilepsy

Author Affiliations

From the Comprehensive Epilepsy Center, Department of Neurology, Columbia University, New York, NY. Dr Bazil is a consultant for UCB Pharma.

Arch Neurol. 2002;59(12):1905-1908. doi:10.1001/archneur.59.12.1905

Background  Many agents are available for treating epilepsy; however, population studies have failed to show overall differences in efficacy for a given seizure type. Clinical experience suggests that certain individuals will respond to a given agent while others with the same seizure type will not.

Objectives  To examine a population of patients who received one of the newer antiepileptic drugs, levetiracetam, and to identify those who had either a dramatic improvement or a significant worsening of seizures.

Methods  Retrospective medical record review of patients with refractory epilepsy.

Results  Patients who responded well to levetiracetam therapy were older at the onset of epileptic seizure than those who did not (mean [SD] age, 51 [5] vs 27 [3] years; P<.05). This was also true of the subset of patients who had localization-related epilepsy. Patients with temporal lobe onset were likely to do well whereas patients with frontal lobe onset were not.

Conclusions  These results suggest that certain subpopulations may be particularly likely to respond to levetiracetam therapy. These need to be confirmed in a larger prospective trial; however, looking for specific characteristics of patients who respond to certain drugs may lead to useful guidelines for drug choices in treating epilepsy.