Drug utilization study in epilepsy in a tertiary care hospital

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Biomedical and Pharmacology Journal


Treatment of epilepsy is quite challenging as it requires the antiepileptic drugs to be taken for a long duration, sometimes throughout the lifetime of the patient. But such chronic drug intake results in adverse effects, drug interactions and added economic and emotional distress to the patients. It is therefore of utmost importance to analyze the pattern of prescription of antiepileptic drugs, including the concurrent medications in epilepsy. The present study was conducted to collect, assess and understand the above data and also to analyze the rationality and correctness of prescription using the WHO prescription indicators. A total of 100 case records of patients diagnosed with epilepsy was analyzed and the data was recorded. We had a total of 66 children and 34 adult patients in our study. Generalized tonic-clonic seizures was the common type of seizure. Phenytoin was the most commonly prescribed antiepileptic drug. 1/3 of the patients needed more than one drug for adequate seizure control and the most common add on drug was levetiracetam. Also, the average number of drugs prescribed to the patients was 6 which included drugs given for concomitant illnesses as well. Average number of medicines per prescription was 6. Prescription by generic name was seen in 42% of the cases. An injection was prescribed in 66% of the prescriptions. An antibiotic was encountered in 38% of the prescriptions. Most of the epileptic patients are subjected to polypharmacy which puts them at a higher risk of side effects, drug interactions and financial burden. Physicians should minimize the use of drugs and look into the rationality of each prescription. rd

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