01-07-2015 | Perampanel may benefit people with primary generalised tonic clonic seizures

01 July 2015
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Perampanel, brand name Fycompa, is a relatively recent epilepsy medication which was licenced originally for use in treating partial seizures. The drug has since been shown to be beneficial for difficult to control generalised seizures. Up to now Perampanel was used in treating partial seizures but has now been given marketing authorisation by the European Commission to be marketed for use as an add on drug for difficult to control primary generalised tonic-clonic seizures in both adults and children over 12 years.

Perampanel works by targetting the AMPA receptors in the brain which have a role in initiating seizures and it is the only currently licenced drug which works this way. Results of recent clinical trials were presented at the Congress of the European Academy of Neurology in Berlin in which Peramanel was used for for generalised tonic clonic seizures and the findings are encouraging. In a trial of 164 patients 31 % became free of their generalised seizures over the 13 week trial compared to 13% who were not on this drug. As a group those on Perampanel had a 77% reduction in generalised seizures compared with 38% for who received a placebo. In other studies of Perampanel on myoclonic and absence seizures was found not to increase myoclonic seizures and to improve absence seizures. 

Adverse side effects of Perampanel in this trial were found to be consistent with previously known side effects of the drug such as dizziness fatigue, sleepiness and irritability and were considered mild to moderate in impact. 

Uncontrolled generalised seizures remain a significant problem in epilepsy management. Furthermore they have potentially serious consequences for p person's quality of life. They are associated with higher levels of injury, safety risk and Sudden Unexpected Death in Epilepsy. They can affect a person's employment options, ability to drive and even to live independently. In this light any new treatment option for uncontrolled generalised seizures is to be welcomed.

Source: PR Newswire

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