Wednesday, August 23, 2023

Efficiency of brivaracetam in a tertiary referral epilepsy center.

Steinhoff BJ, Bacher M, Bucurenciu I, Hillenbrand B, Intravooth T, Kornmeier R, Kurth C, Stockinger J, Staack AM. Real-life experience with brivaracetam in 101 patients with difficult-to-treat epilepsy-A monocenter survey. Seizure. 2017 May;48:11-14. doi: 10.1016/j.seizure.2017.03.010. Epub 2017 Mar 18. PMID: 28364655.


Purpose: To assess the efficiency of brivaracetam under real-world conditions in a tertiary referral epilepsy center.

Methods: We consecutively collected patients treated at our center with brivaracetam (BRV). After a minimum observation period of six months we retrospectively analyzed the efficiency of BRV.

Results: Data of 101 patients (mean age 42 years, range 18-81 years, 54 females,) were analyzed. The median number of antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) used prior to BRV was 10 (range 2-18). The initial dose of BRV was at least 50mg per day, the mean maintenance dose at cut-off was 168.6mg (median 200mg, range 50-400mg). Efficacy data were assessed for the last three months or at the time of the last observation carried forward if BRV had been discontinued prematurely. Responder rate was 27.8% (n=28) with 7% seizure-free patients. Adverse events (AEs) occurred in 37 patients (37%). Most frequent AEs were dizziness (16%) and somnolence (11%). Psychiatric adverse events comprised irritability, aggression, depression and psychosis in single cases. Retention rate after six months was 51.5%. Main reason for discontinuation was a lack of efficacy. In 43 cases LEV and BRV were switched. The switch was performed abruptly without complications. In 26 cases (60%) BRV was discontinued and re-switched to LEV within weeks, mainly due to a lack of better efficacy. After the switch from LEV to BRV we even saw an aggravation both of seizure frequency and severity in 5 cases. Retention rate in patients who had not been on LEV was 57%.

Conclusion: In our hands BRV appeared to be well tolerated and easy to handle. The retention rate was influenced by patients who were switched from LEV and re-switched because BRV was not more efficient. Switching from and re-switching to LEV was easy.

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