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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 16  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 131-136

Effects of long-term antiepileptic therapy on carotid artery intima-media thickness

1 Department of Paediatrics, K.S. Hegde Medical Academy, Nitte (Deemed to be University), Mangaluru, Karnataka, India
2 Department of Radiodiagnosis, K.S. Hegde Medical Academy, Nitte (Deemed to be University), Mangaluru, Karnataka, India

Correspondence Address:
Dr. Seema P Sindgikar
Department of Paediatrics, K.S. Hegde Medical Academy, Nitte (Deemed to be University), Mangaluru 575018, Karnataka.
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jpn.JPN_84_20

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Background: Common first-line antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) used in children are valproate, phenytoin, and levetiracetam. Many side effects for these AEDs are reported including obesity, atherosclerosis, and metabolic syndrome. The aim of our study was to evaluate changes in carotid artery intima-media thickness (CIMT) in epileptic children and to correlate with lipid profile of those who are on long-term antiepileptic therapy. Materials and Methods: This case–control study was done over 18 months in department of pediatrics. Sample size was 84 with equal number of cases and controls. Epileptic children between 1 and 18 years of age receiving monotherapy with valproate, phenytoin, or levetiracetam for at least 6 months were included in the study. Measurement of CIMT was done by B mode ultrasonography. Lipid profile was analyzed. Statistical analysis was performed using one-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) test and Pearson correlation. Results: Among 42 cases of epilepsy, 30 were on valproate, 9 on phenytoin, and 3 on levetiracetam monotherapy. No significant difference was noted in body mass index (BMI) among children receiving AED compared with that of controls (P = 0.82). Mean value for CIMT was significantly higher among valproate (0.43 ± 0.04, P ≤ 0.001), phenytoin (0.44 ± 0.04, P ≤ 0.001), and levetiracetam group (0.43 ± 0.03, P = 0.01) compared to controls (0.39 ± 0.01). Significant correlation was noted between CIMT and total cholesterol (P = 0.034), triglyceride (P = 0.011), low-density lipoprotein (P = 0.008), and very low-density lipoprotein (P = 0.011). Conclusion: Children on long-term monotherapy with valproate, phenytoin, and levetiracetam have significantly abnormal CIMT. This might be associated with atherosclerotic changes, and these children may require close follow-up to prevent cardiovascular and cerebrovascular risks.


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