Efficacy of clobazam as add-on therapy in brain tumor-related epilepsy

Nupur Brahmbhatt, Roger Stupp, Omar Bushara, Elizabeth Bachman, Stephan U. Schuele, Jessica W. Templer*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Purpose: Brain tumor-related epilepsy (TRE) is often resistant to currently available antiepileptic medications (AEDs). Clobazam was initially approved as adjunctive AED for patients with Lennox Gastaut syndrome but has been used in TRE, despite limited evidence in this context. This observational study aims to examine the effect of clobazam on seizure frequency on patients who have a primary CNS tumor and continued seizures despite their current AEDs. Methods: A retrospective review of patients with histologically-confirmed primary brain tumors seen in the neuro-oncology interdisciplinary clinic from April 2016–2019 was completed, and patients on clobazam were identified. Response to clobazam was defined as a greater than 50% reduction in seizure frequency. Additional data including patient and tumor characteristics, treatment course, tolerability, AEDs used prior to addition of clobazam, and AEDs concomitantly used with clobazam were collected. Results: A total of 35 patients with TRE on clobazam were identified, with 2 patients unable to tolerate the medication due to side effects. Of the 33 remaining patients, a total of 31 (93.9%) of patients were deemed responders. Ten patients (30.3%) were seizure free within 6 months of clobazam initiation and 21 (63.6%) reported a significant reduction in seizure frequency. This reduction also allowed several patients to modify concurrent AEDs. Conclusions: Clobazam is an effective agent to use as add-on AED in TRE, with 94% of patients showing a significant response within 6 months. Furthermore, the addition of clobazam may yield a reduction in polypharmacy, as concomitant AEDs can be reduced and potentially withdrawn.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)287-293
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Neuro-Oncology
Volume151
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2021

Keywords

  • Brain tumor-related epilepsy
  • Brain tumors
  • Clobazam
  • Drug resistant epilepsy
  • Seizures

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Neurology
  • Clinical Neurology
  • Cancer Research

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