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Friday, 20 December 2013

The ketogenic diet as a treatment option in adults with chronic refractory epilepsy

The ketogenic diet (KD) is defined as a high-fat, low-protein, low-carbohydrate diet, used commonly as a treatment for patients with difficult-to-control epilepsy. In a study conducted by Department of Neurology, Epilepsy Centre Kempenhaeghe(1) of 15 adults treated with the classical diet or MCT diet, during a follow-up period of 1 year, assessment of seizure frequency, seizure severity, tolerability, cognitive performance, mood and quality of life (QOL) were reported. By Analyzing the study months separately, researchers found that a seizure reduction of ≥50% in 26.6% of the patients during at least 1month of treatment. Common side-effects were gastrointestinal disorders, loss of weight and fatigue. There was a considerable, non-significant improvement found in mood and QOL scores. Improvements were independent of reduction in seizure frequency, indicating that the effects of the KD reach further than seizure control.

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(1) "The ketogenic diet as a treatment option in adults with chronic refractory epilepsy: Efficacy and tolerability in clinical practice" by Lambrechts DA, Wielders LH, Aldenkamp AP, Kessels FG, de Kinderen RJ, Majoie MJ., posted in PubMed