The impact of perampanel treatment on quality of life and psychiatric symptoms in patients with drug-resistant focal epilepsy: An observational study in Italy
An observational, prospective study has been conducted to evaluate the effects of adjunctive treatment with perampanel (PER) on psychological functioning and quality of life (QoL) in patients with drug-resistant focal epilepsy. Fifty-six adult patients treated with PER in addition to antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) were recruited in 2 Italian Epilepsy Centers. Irritability in Adult Patients with Epilepsy (I-EPI), Quality of Life in Epilepsy (QOLIE-31), Beck Depression Inventory II (BDI-II), and State–Trait Anxiety Inventory Y-1 and Y-2 (STAI) questionnaires were administered at baseline and 3 and 6 months after the treatment onset. Adverse events (AEs) were collected during the observational 6 months period. Retention rate of treatment with PER was 82.1% at 3 months and 64.3% at 6 months. Thirteen patients reported a significant seizure frequency reduction, and one seizure freedom case was observed after 4 months of PER treatment. Perampanel was stopped because of inefficacy or paradoxical effects in 28.6% of cases and because of AEs in 7.1%. The peak dose was not associated with discontinuation probability. Irritability, QoL, depression, trait, and state anxiety did not change significantly during the PER therapy. A tendency of association between higher level of irritability at baseline and PER discontinuation was found. The results of this observational study have shown that the addition of PER to AEDs may improve seizure control, does not increase levels of irritability, depression, and anxiety, and does not reduce patients’ QoL. This study also confirms the importance of a comprehensive clinical assessment, including psychiatric symptoms evaluation before offering a new treatment, to improve therapy compliance.