New clinical trial involves people with epilepsy who still get seizures
In the US, more than 800,000 people with epilepsy continue to have seizures despite having tried two or more individual antiepileptic drugs (AEDs)1. More new medications are needed to give people with epilepsy treatment choices.
December 9, 2010 – KING OF PRUSSIA, PA—Of the more than 3 million people with epilepsy in the U.S., two-thirds eventually gain partial or complete control of their seizures, while others continue to have seizures regularly despite taking medication. Antiepileptic drugs work differently in different people. Some people continue to get seizures, others get unwanted side effects.
For those who get partial-onset seizures that occur on a regular basis, the impact on daily living is significant. For example, they may not be permitted to drive or may experience other restrictions or adverse impact on their daily lives.
A new clinical trial now underway throughout the U.S is enrolling people with epilepsy who still get partial-onset seizures regularly despite taking antiepileptic medication. The study is designed to test an investigational treatment to see if, when taken with their current antiepileptic drugs it can help improve seizure control.
Jay H Harvey, D.O. an Epileptologist and President of Neurological Clinic of Texas, P.A. understands the need for new treatment options. “Today as doctors we have more antiepileptic drugs that we can prescribe than ever before, but we still need more of these medications. To develop these new medications we are required to conduct clinical trials. Dr. Harvey is one of 70 doctors conducting this nationwide clinical trial. To qualify for this study, people with epilepsy must be over 16 years old and currently taking one or two antiepileptic medications. They must have had at least 4 partial-onset seizures over the past 4 weeks. Importantly, people can take part in the study even if the clinical trial doctor is not in their health insurer’s network. Further information about the study is available online at http://www.TeamEpilepsy.com.
Clinical trials allow doctors to study the effectiveness of new investigational medications, and closely monitor seizures and side effects. “Taking part in this study can give people with epilepsy an opportunity to become more empowered by being more informed about their epilepsy, and becoming a part of an important study community,” says Dr. Harvey. “If you have uncontrolled partial-onset seizures, learning more about your epilepsy through keeping a daily seizure diary, like the one used in this study, is an important step toward seizure management. The information collected with the support of a team of medical specialists can enable people with epilepsy to have greater knowledge about their health and their treatment options.”
Partial-onset seizures usually last 3 minutes or less. They are different for each person, but can cause stiffness, sudden sharp movements, repetitive movements like chewing or picking at clothing, sudden mood swings, and can make a person hear or see things that aren’t there. Afterwards, people often feel tired or confused, weak, or forget what happened. Some partial seizures can spread to the whole brain (secondarily generalize) and become “convulsions” or “grand mal.”
The study’s website allows people with epilepsy to be screened online to see whether they might qualify for the study: http://www.TeamEpilepsy.com. Screening by phone is an option as well 1-888-570-3141.
1. Epilepsy Advocate Magazine, Fall 2010: http://www.epilepsyadvocate.com
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