Anti-Seizure Medication
Monday, Sept. 15, 2008

Anti-seizure drugs are effective for many with epilepsy, but not taking the prescribed medications can be tragic. Dr. Ed Hill discusses a study on epileptic medications in todayís 60 Second Housecall.

Not taking medication to control epileptic seizures could be deadly, according to a review of medical records by researchers at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

The study included 33,658 people with epilepsy who filled at least two epilepsy drug prescriptions.

The review found that people who took their epilepsy medications less than 80 percent of the time over three months were three times more likely to die. This was compared with people who took their medication as prescribed during the same time period. The researchers took into account other factors, such as age, gender, other medical problems and regular use of other medications.

Incidence of hospital admissions increased by 86 percent and emergency room visits increased 50 percent during the time when people did not take their medications regularly.

Researchers say that while there are many reasons people fail to take their seizure medications, including cost, side effects and pregnancy, patients need to stay on their medications and physicians need to recognize and treat issues related to people failing to take epilepsy drugs.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Iím Dr. Ed Hill.