Literature Review

Vagus Nerve Stimulation Reduces Seizures and Improves Quality of Life

Patients with epilepsy saw improvements in alertness, mood, and verbal communication.


 

Patients with epilepsy who do not respond to drug therapy and who are not candidates for surgery sometimes respond to vagus nerve stimulation (VNS). Research suggests that VNS reduces the frequency of seizures, but a recent study now suggests it may also improve patients’ quality of life. Englot et al found that the therapy improves alertness, post-ictal state, cluster seizures, mood, verbal communication, school and professional achievements, and memory. Several factors predicted patients’ improvement, including a shorter time to implant, female gender, generalized seizure type, and being Caucasian.

Englot DJ, Hassnain KH, Rolston JD, et al. Quality-of-life metrics with vagus nerve stimulation for epilepsy from provider survey data. Epilepsy Behav. 2017;66:4-9.

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