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Epilepsia. 2010 Dec;51(12):2496-9. doi: 10.1111/j.1528-1167.2010.02774.x. Epub 2010 Nov 10.

Will seizure control improve by switching from the modified Atkins diet to the traditional ketogenic diet?

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  • 1Neurology, The Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland, USA.


It has been reported that children can maintain seizure control when the ketogenic diet (KD) is transitioned to the less-restrictive modified Atkins diet (MAD). What is unknown, however, is the likelihood of additional seizure control from a switch from the MAD to the KD. Retrospective information was obtained from 27 patients who made this dietary change from four different institutions. Ten (37%) patients had ≥10% additional seizure reduction with the KD over the MAD, of which five became seizure-free. The five children who did not improve on the MAD failed to improve when transitioned to the KD. A higher incidence of improvement with the KD occurred for those with myoclonic-astatic epilepsy (70% vs. 12% for all other etiologies, p = 0.004), including all who became seizure-free. These results suggest that the KD probably represents a "higher dose" of dietary therapy than the MAD, which may particularly benefit those with myoclonic-astatic epilepsy.

Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2010 International League Against Epilepsy.

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