Lacosamide in the treatment of patients with epilepsy and intellectual disabilities: A long-term study of 136 patients



This study aimed to analyze the retention rate of lacosamide (LCM) in patients with epilepsy and intellectual disabilities (IDs), to identify factors influencing retention rate, and to investigate the LCM retention rate with and without concomitant sodium channel blocker (SCB). We hypothesized that the retention rate of LCM with concomitant SCB would be lower than without SCB.


Using the Kaplan-Meier estimator, we conducted a monocentric, retrospective, observational, open-label study to evaluate LCM retention rates in patients with IDs and drug-resistant epilepsy. In addition, the impact of therapy-related variables on the long-term retention of LCM was evaluated.


One hundred thirty-six subjects with IDs and drug-resistant epilepsy were included (age 2–66 years); most patients had focal epilepsy. Long-term retention rates were 62.0% at 1 year, 43.7% at 2 years, and 29.1% at 3 and 4 years. Reasons for LCM discontinuation included insufficient therapeutic benefits (69%), adverse events (11%), or a combination of both factors (8%). The LCM retention rate was influenced by the number of background antiepileptic drugs (AEDs). An additional and independent influence of concomitant therapy with SCB on retention rate could not be confirmed.


One of the major challenges in medically caring for patients with epilepsy and IDs is the high rate of drug resistance. However, there is a lack of evidence-based information about the efficacy and tolerability of AEDs in this population. It has been shown that concomitant SCB use is a key factor in increasing the risk of LCM failure in children with epilepsy. This finding has not been replicated in our predominantly adult sample of patients with IDs.