A new study published recently in the journal, Epilepsy & Behaviour, has pointed to the use of the medication brivaracetam (Briviact) as a potential adjunctive treatment for those with drug –resistant epilepsy who cannot tolerate the drug levetiracetam (Keppra).
Medications that are prescribed as an adjunctive treatment are also called ‘add-on’ treatments and aim to assist the primary medication that a person is on.
This study - which was carried out by the Neurology Department of Leeds Teaching Hospital- focussed on 134 persons with epilepsy who were either already on brivaracetam or who were previously on levetracetam and were changed to brivaracetam.
Their medication was changed for brivaracetam as they were not responding to treatment on levetracetam or they were displaying side effects as a result of being on levetracetam. This amounted to 63 patients of the total 134.
Those taking part in the study received a median dosage of 200mg across an average of 11 months. The study has found that approximately 29% of patients with focal epilepsy, 25% of patients with generalized epilepsy, and 71% of patients with combined focal and generalized epilepsy achieved an improvement in their seizure rates of approximately 50%.
It is important to note however that the results of this study are based off a small, localised group of people with epilepsy.
Further information on the study can be found here.
Should you have any questions or concerns regarding the medication you are on, please consult with your medical team. Epilepsy is an individual condition and the affects and/or drawbacks of certain medications vary from person to person.