Vagus Nerve Stimulation Therapy (TM) more effective in epilepsy patients when used earlier

Denver, CO April 18, 2002 (Nasdaq: CYBX) Vagus Nerve Stimulation Therapy (VNS Therapy (TM)) offers a higher success rate in achieving seizure control among patients with pharmacoresistant epilepsy when used earlier in the course of their condition, according to a study presented at a poster session at the 54th annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) in Denver. The study found that VNS Therapy was more effective when used within five years of seizure onset or after trials of four or fewer antiepileptic drugs (AEDs).

Many patients have had epilepsy for well over five years before being treated with VNS Therapy, even if medications have been unsuccessful in controlling their seizures says study investigator James Wheless, M.D., director of the Texas Comprehensive Epilepsy Program at University of Texas Medical School at Houston. This study demonstrates that people with epilepsy shouldnt wait through years of failed drug therapies and associated side effects before trying VNS Therapythe therapy works better when used earlier in the treatment course.

This study prospectively followed a group of VNS Therapy patients who had been diagnosed with epilepsy less than five years before implantation or who had tried four or fewer AEDs (n=120) to determine if using VNS Therapy earlier in the treatment course improves efficacy. The control group was identified retrospectively from the VNS patient outcome registry and was composed of VNS Therapy patients who were implanted more than five years after diagnosis. Preliminary results showed that after three months of treatment with VNS Therapy, fifteen percent of the study participants reported no seizures, a three-fold statistically significant improvement over the control group.

Additionally, and equally as important, patients quality of life after three months of VNS Therapy was better or much better based on several quality of life indicators, including seizure recovery period (p

Contact: Meaghan Atkinson
Porter Novelli

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