There is no consensus regarding the time of antiepileptic drug withdrawal and the relevant risk factors for seizure relapse. In this study, we aimed to determine the seizure relapse rates and the associated risk factors for seizure relapse in childhood epilepsy. Two-hundred sixty-six epileptic patients who discontinued the antiepileptic drug therapy after a seizure-free period of at least two years, were enrolled into the study. The data of the patients regarding sex, febrile convulsion history, family history, age at onset, type of epilepsy, total number of seizures and antiepileptic drugs, seizures during treatment, mental status, first and last electroencephalography, brain imaging findings, etiological factors and seizure relapse in the first two years after antiepileptic drug withdrawal were obtained from the patients’ files. Univariate logistic regression analysis was performed for each variable. The variables which were found to be statistically significant in univariate analysis, were included in multivariate logistic regression analysis. The overall seizure relapse rate after antiepileptic drug withdrawal was 19.2%. There were no significant differences for seizure relapse rate after antiepileptic drug withdrawal between patient groups with respect to sex, family history, type of epilepsy, febrile convulsion history, seizures before treatment, first electroencephalography findings, brain imaging findings and etiology. However, there were statistically significant differences for seizure relapse rate among patient groups concerning age at onset of epilepsy, new seizure during treatment, the total number of antiepileptic drugs, mental status, and last electroencephalography findings. We imply that the clinical status of the patients should be considered before the cessation of drug therapy rather than the etiological factors or laboratory findings.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.