Ketogenic diets ‘may be effective in adult patients’

Posted Jul 25 2014 in Other treatments

Ketogenic dietary therapies could be a feasible and effective means of treating epilepsy in adult patients.

Currently, ketogenic diets are recognised as an effective treatment for children with drug-resistant epilepsy, but there is no high-quality evidence supporting their use in adults, prompting this new study from the UCL Institute of Neurology.

Published in the journal Epilepsy & Behavior, the study looked at the effectiveness and tolerability of ketogenic diets in 23 adults with epilepsy attending specialist clinics. It was revealed that response rates in terms of seizure frequency were similar to those seen in children.

Almost two-fifths of those involved remained on the diet for at least one year, with other benefits reported by patients including a reduction in seizure severity and increased alertness and concentration.

The research concluded: “Other aspects besides seizure frequency may be relevant when classifying response in adults, and appropriate ways to quantify these factors should be considered for use in future studies.”

Ketogenic diets are rich in natural fat, adequate in protein intake and low in carbohydrates. They are known to reduce the number or severity of seizures in children, while also having a positive effect on behaviour.

Posted by Anne Brown

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