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Seizure Prophylaxis in the Immediate Post-Hemorrhagic Period in Patients with Aneurysmal Subarachnoid Hemorrhage.

Authors
  • Kodankandath, Thomas V1
  • Farooq, Salman1
  • Wazni, Wled1
  • Cox, John-Andrew1
  • Southwood, Christopher1
  • Rozansky, Gregory1
  • Johnson, Vijay1
  • Lynch, John R1
  • 1 Department of Neurology, Medical College of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI, USA.
Type
Published Article
Journal
Journal of vascular and interventional neurology
Publication Date
Dec 01, 2017
Volume
9
Issue
6
Pages
1–4
Identifiers
PMID: 29445430
Source
Medline
Keywords
Language
English
License
Unknown

Abstract

Seizures are a well-known complication of aneurysmal subarachnoid hemorrhage (aSAH) and occur most commonly in the immediate posthemorrhagic period. Most commonly used antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) for seizure prophylaxis in aSAH include phenytoin and levetiracetam. There is no reliable data available on the safety and efficacy of restricting AED prophylaxis only till the aneurysm is secured. We retrospectively chart reviewed patients admitted to our neurosciences intensive care unit (NICU) with aSAH during the past two years. Seizure incidence was studied in patients treated with phenytoin versus levetiracetam and in patients treated for 3-7 days vs. those where AED was discontinued immediately after aneurysm was secured. In 28 patients, AED prophylaxis was discontinued immediately after the aneurysm was secured, and in 21 patients, it was continued for 3-7 days. Of the 28 patients who received AED prophylaxis for less than or equal to two days, phenytoin was used in 20 patients and levetiracetam was used in eight patients. In patients receiving AED prophylaxis for 3-7 days, phenytoin was used in eight cases and levetiracetam was used in 13 cases. None of these patients had seizures reported during hospitalization or at three-month follow-up. Stopping the AED prophylaxis immediately after aneurysm coiling is not associated with increased risk of seizures. Seizures at presentation in patients with aSAH are not associated with development of epilepsy at three months. Both phenytoin and levetiracetam are well tolerated in patients with aSAH when limited to the immediate posthemorrhagic period.

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