Anti-epileptic Therapy Not Linked to Increased Dementia Risk, Study Reports

Anti-epileptic Therapy Not Linked to Increased Dementia Risk, Study Reports
Use of anti-epileptic therapy is not linked to an increased risk of dementia, according to the results of a real-world study with more than 100,000 patients followed in general and neuropsychiatrist practices in Germany. However, generic forms of the anti-epileptic medicine levetiracetam may potentially have a deleterious effect on cognition. The study, “Is There an Association Between Antiepileptic Drug Use and Dementia Risk? A Case-Control Study,” was published in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease. Previous research has reported a bidirectional relationship between epilepsy and dementia. One study reported that epilepsy was associated with a 1.5-fold increase in the risk of developing dementia; another one found that Alzheimer's was a significant predictor of epileptic seizures. The association between epilepsy and dementia could be "explained by the fact that these two conditions share common vascular risk factors (e.g., coronary artery disease, stroke, hypertension)," researchers wrote. As such, anti-epileptic drugs (AEDs) could be an effective strategy to prevent cognitive decline and dementia in people with epilepsy. However, recent research has suggested a link between the use of AEDs and dementia, with authors claiming that AEDs can affect cognition by interfering with the communication between nerve cells. Nonetheless, there have been some concerns about the generalizabili
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