June 11, 2019

One-Third of Epilepsy Cases Go Untreated up to 3 Years After Diagnosis

A small yet substantial subset of patients with newly diagnosed epilepsy go without appropriate treatment approximately 3 years after diagnosis, and this gap in treatment may be increasing the risk for medical events and hospitalization in these patients. This is according to a retrospective study published in Neurology.

Commercial and supplemental Medicare databases from 2010 through 2015 were used to obtain claims-based data of patients with epilepsy retrospectively. The researchers also included PharMetrics Plus Database linked to Longitudinal Prescription Database claims database data from 2009 through 2014 for the validation study. Data were included for patients who met criteria for newly diagnosed epilepsy and had continuous medical and pharmacy enrollment without epilepsy/seizure diagnosis or treatment with an antiepileptic drug (AED) during the baseline period. The primary outcomes were the proportion of untreated patients (ie, no prescription for an AED) at approximately 3 years of follow-up. Additional outcomes included medical events and healthcare resource utilization during this follow-up period.

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