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Epilepsia. 1992 Nov-Dec;33(6):1123-31.

Psychosocial outcomes of antiepileptic drug discontinuation. The Medical Research Council Antiepileptic Drug Withdrawal Study Group.

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Institute for Social Studies in Medical Care, London, England.


The MRC Antiepileptic Drug Withdrawal Study compared seizure control and the risk of relapse resulting from policies of slow discontinuation and routine maintenance of antiepileptic drug (AED) treatment in patients seizure-free for > or = 2 years. Because the decision to discontinue AEDs can have important psychosocial as well as medical consequences, we also sought to examine the psychosocial outcomes of the alternative policies Questionnaires were sent to eligible adults 2 years after their randomization. The response rate was 85%. There was little evidence of substantial effects of treatment policy on psychosocial outcomes, but seizure recurrence since randomization was associated with increased distress on several measures. However, receiving AEDs to control seizures was also associated with increased distress. Among patients for whom the risk of relapse after discontinuation appears low, the psychosocial benefits of discontinuation may be considerable.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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