April 22, 2021

Effects of Double-Dose Statin Therapy for the Prevention of Post-Stroke Epilepsy: A Prospective Clinical Study

Abstract, originally published in Seizure

Background: To determine treatment effects on the incidence of post-stroke epilepsy (PSE) using different doses of statin, a prospective hospital-based cohort study was designed to explore whether a double-dose statin treatment can better prevent the occurrence of PSE.

Methods: A total of 1152 patients with newly diagnosed ischemic stroke admitted to our hospital from March to August 2017 were selected, 1033 of whom were followed-up. Patients were divided into two treatment groups:(1) standard-dose (20 mg atorvastatin or 10 mg rosuvastatin, daily oral; 788 patients); and (2) double-dose (40 mg atorvastatin or 20 mg rosuvastatin, daily oral; 245 patients). At 18 months follow-up was conducted to compare the incidence of PSE between groups.

Results: In general, in the standard-dose group we observed two cases of early seizure (ES) (0.25%), 22 cases of late seizure (LS) (2.79%) and 20 cases of PSE (2.54%). In the double-dose group, one patient had ES (0.41%), two patients had LS (0.82%), and one patient had PSE (0.41%). The incidence of PSE was significantly lower in the double-dose group as compared to the standard-dose group. There was a higher proportion of PSE in patients younger than 65 years and in males. Three patients had ES; one presented with focal aware seizure (FAS), and two had focal to bilateral tonic-clonic seizure (FBTCS). Among the 21 patients with PSE, there were two cases of FAS, five cases of focal impaired awareness seizure (FIAS), five cases of FBTCS, and nine cases of GTCS, suggesting that partial seizure is the most common type of PSE. Cerebral cortex was involved in 85.75% of cases with PSE, and multiple lobes were involved in 61.9% of cases with PSE.

Conclusion: Increasing the dose of statin treatment during the acute phase of ischemic stroke reduces the incidence of post-stroke epilepsy. Further research is needed to understand the mechanisms underlying the potential preventative effects of statins against post-stroke epilepsy.

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