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J Clin Neurol. 2015 Jan;11(1):26-31. doi: 10.3988/jcn.2015.11.1.26. Epub 2015 Jan 2.

Efficacy of and patient compliance with a ketogenic diet in adults with intractable epilepsy: a meta-analysis.

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1
Department of Neurology, Sichuan Provincial Academy of Medical Sciences & Sichuan Provincial People's Hospital, Chengdu, China.

Abstract

BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE:

Despite the successful use of a ketogenic diet in pediatric epilepsy, its application in adults has been limited. The aim of this meta-analysis was to summarize the findings of relevant published studies in order to identify the efficacy of and compliance with a ketogenic diet and its main subtypes (i.e., classic ketogenic diet and modified Atkins diet) in adults with intractable epilepsy, and to provide useful information for clinical practice.

METHODS:

Electronic searches of PubMed, EMBASE, Google Scholar, and the ISI Web of Science were conducted to identify studies of the efficacy of and patient compliance with a ketogenic diet in adults with intractable epilepsy; the included studies were reviewed. Meta-analyses were performed using STATA to determine combined efficacy rates and combined rates of compliance with the ketogenic diet and its main subtypes.

RESULTS:

In total, 12 studies qualified for inclusion, and data from 270 patients were evaluated.The results of the meta-analysis revealed combined efficacy rates of all types of ketogenic diet, a classical ketogenic diet, and a modified Atkins diet were 42%, 52%, and 34%, respectively; the corresponding combined compliance rates were 45%, 38%, and 56%.

CONCLUSIONS:

The results indicate that a ketogenic diet is a promising complementary therapy in adult intractable epilepsy, and that while a classical ketogenic diet may be more effective, adult patients are likely to be less compliant with it than with a modified Atkins diet.

KEYWORDS:

adult; compliance; efficacy; intractable epilepsy; ketogenic diet

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