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Do prophylactic anticonvulsant drugs alter the pattern of seizures after craniotomy?
  1. P M Foy,
  2. D W Chadwick,
  3. N Rajgopalan,
  4. A L Johnson,
  5. M D Shaw
  1. Mersey Regional Department of Medical and Surgical Neurology, Walton Hospital, Liverpool.

    Abstract

    A total of 276 patients with a high risk of developing postoperative seizures were randomised to treatment with carbamazepine or phenytoin for six or 24 months, or to no treatment. No significant differences were found (though the confidence limits were fairly wide) between the regimes in respect of the incidence of seizures or death. In a substantial proportion of the patients postoperative epilepsy remained a continuing disability. A high incidence of drug-related side effects was found in the treatment groups. Prophylactic anticonvulsants cannot therefore be recommended routinely following supratentorial craniotomy.

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