Send to

Choose Destination
Iran Red Crescent Med J. 2013 Mar;15(3):249-53. doi: 10.5812/ircmj.9690. Epub 2013 Mar 5.

Serum level of homocysteine, folate and vitamin-B12 in epileptic patients under carbamazepine and sodium valproate treatment: a systematic review and meta-analysis.

Author information

Physiology Research Center, Iran University of Medical Sciences, Hemmat Campus, Tehran, IR Iran.



Numerous studies have shown that long term treatment with anticonvulsants may be an important risk factor for the onset of atherosclerosis, or worsening of its symptoms. There are many contradictory reports regarding these effects.


We performed a systematic review and meta-analysis of the published studies in order to see whether the atherogenic outcomes could be related to any serum biochemical abnormalities.


Published articles indexed in PubMed, ISI web of science, Science Direct and Scopus databases from 1990 to 2011 were retrieved using a comprehensive search strategy. After omitting the unrelated articles and duplicates, articles met the eligibility criteria for critical appraisal were included in the analysis. Data were summarized in standard data abstraction forms and subjected to analysis by STATA software.


Finally, ten published studies were included in the meta-analysis. Results showed that carbamazepine and sodium valproate consumption are associated with a significant elevation of the serum homocysteine levels. On the other hand, medication with carbamazepine is associated with a reduction of the level of folate in the serum and that of sodium valproate is associated with a reduction of serum level of vitamin B12.


According to the results of this study, as carbamazepine and valproate sodium consumption can result in elevated serum levels of homocysteine and decreased levels of folate and vitamin B12, and the atherogenic effect of increased serum homocysteine level is well established, the patients under these medications should be monitored for possible atherogenic effects.


Adverse Effects; Anticonvulsants; Atherosclerosis; Carbamazepine; Epilepsy; Valproic Acid

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center