In a population of 51220 from three geographic areas, all the patients treated with antiepileptic drugs (AED) seen by the local general practitioners (GP) were examined by a neurologist to check the appropriateness of AED as 'markers' of epilepsy, to calculate the crude prevalence rate of the disease, and to assess the quality of care to patients of epilepsy in clinical practice. The diagnosis of epilepsy was confirmed in 199 out of 209 patients taking AED. Thus, drugs are rather sensitive 'markers' of epilepsy. Yet, the prevalence of epilepsy so calculated (3.89 cases per 1000) was significantly lower than that found with different methods of case ascertainment (including information from drug sales), suggesting a low access rate to GP by patients with epilepsy. Our findings tend also to support the evidence that monitoring and management of epilepsy in clinical practice do not aways reflect the common standards of the literature.
|Translated title of the contribution||Antiepileptic drugs as 'tracers' for the study of the prevalence of epilepsy|
|Title of host publication||Bollettino - Lega Italiana contro l'Epilessia|
|Number of pages||2|
|Publication status||Published - 1989|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Clinical Neurology