The latest medical research on Epilepsy

The research magnet gathers the latest research from around the web, based on your specialty area. Below you will find a sample of some of the most recent articles from reputable medical journals about epilepsy gathered by our medical AI research bot.

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The Phenomenology of Primary Orthostatic Tremor.

"Movement Disorders Clinical Practice

The presence and prevalence of several neurological signs in patients with primary orthostatic tremor have not been systematically studied.

To assess the prevalence of clinical features of primary orthostatic tremor.

Video-based assessment by four raters of standardized neurological examination of 11 patients with primary orthostatic tremor.

On standing, bent knees (7/11), hem sign (6/10), and a broad base of support (6/11) were the three most prevalent signs. Examination of gait revealed abnormal tandem gait (9/11) and bent knees (6/11) as the most prevalent clinical signs. In the arms, none of the patients displayed bradykinesia, ataxia, or dystonia. In the legs, ataxia was absent in all patients and bradykinesia was present in only one patient.

Abnormal tandem gait, bent knees, hem sign, and broad base on standing are the most prevalent clinical signs in primary orthostatic tremor. We did not encounter clear extrapyramidal or unequivocal cerebellar signs.

Negative DAT-SPECT in Old Onset Parkinson's Disease: An Additional Pitfall?

"Movement Disorders Clinical Practice

Scans without evidence of dopaminergic deficit (SWEDDs) refer to patients clinically diagnosed with Parkinson's disease (PD), but showing normal findings on dopamine transporter single-photon emission computed tomography (DAT-SPECT). This entity remains highly debated, but recent findings suggesting that DAT-SPECT does not reflect either nigral cell bodies or striatal fibers of dopaminergic nigrostriatal neurons could improve our understanding of SWEDDs. Notably, compensatory downregulation of DAT in the early stages of PD seems to be less efficient in older-onset than in young-onset patients.

We report eight patients with old-onset clinical parkinsonism and a positive response to levodopa in which DAT-SPECT was normal both visually and semiquantitatively. Two subjects demonstrated an abnormal scan when repeated later.

We suggest that old-onset patients may truly have dopaminergic degeneration despite normal imaging results, presumably because they are diagnosed in the early stages confirming less efficient striatal compensatory strategies in old-age onset PD.

Level I PD-MCI Using Global Cognitive Tests and the Risk for Parkinson's Disease Dementia.

"Movement Disorders Clinical Practice

The criteria for PD-MCI allow the use of global cognitive tests. Their predictive value for conversion from PD-MCI to PDD, especially compared to comprehensive neuropsychological assessment, is unknown.

The MDS PD-MCI Study Group combined four datasets containing global cognitive tests as well as a comprehensive neuropsychological assessment to define PD-MCI (n = 467). Risk for developing PDD was examined using a Cox model. Global cognitive tests were compared to neuropsychological test batteries (Level I&II) in determining risk for PDD.

PD-MCI based on a global cognitive test (MMSE or MoCA) increases the hazard for developing PDD (respectively HR = 2.57, P = 0.001; HR = 4.14, P = <0.001). The C-statistics for MMSE (0.72) and MoCA (0.70) were lower than those based on neuropsychological tests (Level I = 0.82; Level II = 0.81). Sensitivity, specificity and diagnostic accuracy balance was best in Level II.

MMSE and MoCA predict conversion to PDD. However, Level II neuropsychological assessment seems the preferred assessment for PD-MCI.

Milestones in Tremor Research: 10 Years Later.

"Movement Disorders Clinical Practice

Major progress has occurred during the last decade in the field of tremor. From the clinical standpoint, a new classification has completely revise...

Antiphospholipid-Related Chorea: Two Case Reports and Role of Metabolic Imaging.

"Movement Disorders Clinical Practice

Antiphospholipid syndrome (APS) is a complex acquired autoimmune disease with a wide clinical spectrum. Chorea is a rare neurological manifestation of APS.

We report two elderly patients with APS-related chorea in whom functional imaging (18F-FDG positron emission tomography, FDG-PET) supported the diagnosis and compare our findings with existing literature.

Among 142 clinical cases of antiphospholipid-related chorea found in literature, only 10 had undergone brain metabolic imaging. Striatal hypermetabolism was evident in all cases (6) that underwent FDG-PET cerebral imaging. Cerebral perfusion single photon emission computed tomography (SPECT) was normal in two cases, while the other two presented with basal ganglia hypoperfusion.

Brain FDG-PET usually shows striatal hypometabolism in neurodegenerative types of chorea as opposed to striatal hypermetabolism observed in most cases of chorea from reversible etiologies, such as APS-related chorea. When a patient's clinical presentation is not clearly suggestive of either a neurodegenerative or autoimmune chorea, and first-line investigations are normal, FDG-PET may help in the differential diagnosis, especially in the presence of striatal hypermetabolism. SPECT data are less numerous and show either normal scans or basal ganglia hypoperfusion.

Pathologically Verified Corticobasal Degeneration Mimicking Richardson's Syndrome Coexisting with Clinically and Radiologically Shunt-Responsive Normal Pressure Hydrocephalus.

"Movement Disorders Clinical Practice

Normal pressure hydrocephalus (NPH) manifests as gait instability, cognitive impairment, and urinary incontinence. This clinical triad of NPH sometimes occurs with ventriculomegaly in patients with neurodegenerative disease. Patients with pathologically verified neurodegenerative diseases, such as progressive supranuclear palsy (PSP), have received antemortem diagnoses of NPH.

This study presents clinical and pathological features of a patient with pathologically verified corticobasal degeneration (CBD) coexisting with clinically shunt-responsive NPH.

We performed clinical, radiological, and pathological evaluations in a patient with CBD whose antemortem diagnosis was PSP Richardson's syndrome (PSP-RS) coexisting with shunt-responsive NPH.

A 59-year-old woman developed bradykinesia and gait instability and then frequent falls, urinary incontinence, and supranuclear vertical gaze palsy followed. At 63 years of age, her gait disturbance and urinary incontinence had deteriorated rapidly, and cognitive impairment was disclosed. There were typical findings of NPH with ventriculomegaly and disproportionately enlarged subarachnoid space hydrocephalus as well as a 2-layer appearance with decreased and increased cerebral blood perfusion. Shunt placement ameliorated gait instability for more than 1 year and improved radiological indicators of NPH. However, atrophy of the midbrain progressed with time after transient increases in size. Although the antemortem diagnosis was probable PSP-RS, pathological evaluation verified CBD. There were severe discontinuities of the ependymal lining of the lateral ventricles and subependymal rarefaction and gliosis with tau-positive deposition.

Shunt surgery could ameliorate NPH symptoms in patients with 4-repeat tauopathies. Careful assessments of clinical findings are necessary to predict the benefits of shunts as a therapeutic option for patients with neurodegenerative diseases coexisting with NPH.

Tolerability and efficacy of adjunctive brivaracetam in adults with focal seizures by concomitant antiseizure medication use: pooled results from three Phase 3 trials.


Evaluate safety/tolerability and efficacy of adjunctive brivaracetam (BRV) in patients on one or two concomitant antiseizure medications (ASMs) and in patients on one specific concomitant ASM.

Post hoc analysis of double-blind trials (N01252/NCT00490035, N01253/NCT00464269, and N01358/NCT01261325) in adults with focal seizures randomized to BRV (50-200 mg/day; approved therapeutic dose range for adults) or placebo with concomitant ASM regimen unchanged throughout 12-week evaluation period. Outcomes were analyzed in patients on one or two concomitant ASMs, and those on concomitant carbamazepine (CBZ), lamotrigine (LTG), oxcarbazepine (OXC), or valproate (VPA) only.

Patients randomized to BRV with one or two concomitant ASMs, respectively (n=181/557), reported similar incidences of treatment-emergent adverse events (TEAEs; 68.0%/66.4%), drug-related TEAEs (41.4%/41.5%), and TEAEs leading to discontinuation (6.6%/5.4%). Respective values for patients randomized to placebo with one or two concomitant ASMs (n=95/331) were 60.0%/60.7% (TEAEs), 32.6%/30.2% (drug-related TEAEs), and 2.1%/4.5% (TEAEs leading to discontinuation). The incidences of TEAEs, drug-related TEAEs, and TEAEs leading to discontinuation by specific concomitant ASM (CBZ, LTG, OXC, VPA) were similar to the overall incidences in patients taking one concomitant ASM. In patients on one or two concomitant ASMs, respectively, 50% responder rates were numerically higher on BRV (42.3%/36.8% [n=175/511]) vs placebo (18.3%/19.5% [n=93/298]). Patients with one or two ASMs on BRV (n=175/509) vs placebo (n=92/298) also had numerically higher 100% responder rates (BRV: 9.1%/4.5%; placebo: 1.1%/0.3%) and seizure freedom (6.9%/3.7%; 1.1%/0). For patients taking concomitant CBZ, LTG, OXC, or VPA, efficacy was numerically higher with BRV (n=54/30/27/27) vs placebo (n=34/13/10/14-15; 50% responder rates: BRV, 31.5%/30.0%/40.7%/70.4%; placebo, 17.6%/7.7%/20.0%/33.3%; 100% responder rates: BRV, 5.6%/10.0%/11.1%/11.1%; placebo, 0 for all; seizure freedom: BRV, 3.7%/6.7%/7.4%/11.1%; placebo, 0 for all).

Therapeutic doses of BRV were efficacious and well tolerated regardless of the number of concomitant ASMs (one or two) or specific concomitant ASM (CBZ, LTG, OXC, VPA).

Epilepsy Milestones 2.0 - An Updated Framework for Assessing Epilepsy Fellowships and Fellows.


Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) accredited Epilepsy Fellowships like other ACGME accredited training programs use Milestones to establish learning objectives and to evaluate how well trainees are achieving these goals. The ACGME began developing the second iteration of the Milestones six years ago, which are now being adapted to all specialties. Here we describe the process by which Epilepsy Milestones 2.0 were developed and summarize them.

A work group of nine board certified, adult and pediatric epileptologists reviewed Epilepsy Milestones 1.0 and revised them using a modified Delphi approach.

The new Milestones share structural changes with all other specialties including a clearer stepwise progression in professional development and the harmonized Milestones that address competencies common to all medical fields. Much of the Epilepsy specific content remains the same, though a major addition is a set of Milestones focused on reading and interpreting electroencephalograms (EEGs), which the old Milestones lacked. Epilepsy Milestones 2.0 includes a Supplemental Guide to help Program Directors implement the new Milestones. Together, Epilepsy Milestones 2.0 and the Supplemental Guide recognize advances in epilepsy including stereo EEG, neurostimulation, genetics, and safety in Epilepsy Monitoring Units.

Epilepsy Milestones 2.0 address the shortcomings of the old Milestones and should facilitate the assessment of Epilepsy Fellowships and fellows by Program Directors, faculty, and fellows themselves.

Statins as antiepileptogenic drugs: analysing the evidence and identifying the most promising statin.


Many brain insults and injuries are 'epileptogenic': they increase the risk of developing epilepsy. It is desirable to identify treatments that are...

Diagnostic yield and limitations of in-hospital documentation in patients with epilepsy.


To determine the diagnostic yield of in-hospital video-EEG monitoring to document seizures in epilepsy patients.

Retrospective analysis of electronic seizure documentation at the University Hospital Freiburg (UKF) and at King´s College London (KCL). Statistical assessment of the role of the duration of monitoring, and subanalyses on presurgical patient groups and patients undergoing antiseizure medication reduction.

Out of over 4.800 patients with epilepsy undergoing in-hospital recordings at the two institutions since 2005, 43 % (KCL) and 73 % (UKF) had a seizure documented. Duration of monitoring was highly significantly associated with seizure recordings (p<0.0001), and presurgical patients as well as patients with drug reduction had a significantly higher diagnostic yield (p<00001). Recordings with a duration of >5 days only lead to additional new seizure documentation in less than 10% of patients.

There is a need for the development of new ambulatory monitoring strategies to document seizures for diagnostic and monitoring purposes for a relevant subgroup of epilepsy patients in whom in-hospital monitoring fails to document seizures.

Drivers of US Healthcare Spending for Persons with Seizures and/or Epilepsies, 2010-2018.


To characterize spending for persons classified with seizure or epilepsy and determine if spending has increased over time.

In this cross-sectional study we pooled data from the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey (MEPS) household component files for 2010 to 2018. We matched cases to controls on age and sex of a population-based sample of MEPS respondents (community-dwelling persons of all ages) with records associated with a medical event (e.g., outpatient visit; hospital inpatient) for seizure, epilepsy, or both. Outcomes were weighted to be representative of the civilian, non-institutionalized population. We estimated the treated prevalence of epilepsy and seizure, healthcare spending overall and by site of care, and trends in spending growth.

We identified 1,078 epilepsy cases, and 2,344 seizure cases. Treated prevalence was 0.38% (95% CI =0.34-0.41) for epilepsy, 0.76% (95% CI=0.71-0.81) for seizure, and 1.14% (95% CI: 1.08-1.20) for epilepsy or seizure. The difference in annual spending for cases compared to controls was $4,580 (95% CI: $3,362-$5,798) for epilepsy, $7,935 (95% CI: $6,237-$9,634) for seizure, and $6,853 (95% CI: $5,623-$8,084) for epilepsy or seizure, translating into aggregate costs of $5.4 billion, $19.0 billion, and $24.5 billion. From 2010 to 2018, the annual growth rate in total spending incurred for seizures and/or epilepsies was 7.6% compared to 3.6% among controls.

U.S. economic burden of seizures and/or epilepsies is substantial and warrants interventions focused on their unique and overlapping causes.

Correlation between FDG-PET brain hypometabolism and PTSD symptoms in temporal lobe epilepsy.


The relationship between post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and focal epilepsy is poorly understood. It has been hypothesized that there is a co...