Purpose: A 34-year-old woman with progressive myoclonus epilepsy of Unverricht-Lundborg type was considered for vagus nerve stimulation (VNS) therapy.
Methods: After demonstration of intractability to multiple antiepileptic regimens and progressive deterioration in cerebellar function, the patient was implanted with a vagus nerve stimulator and followed for 1 year. Neurological status, seizure frequency, and parameter changes were analyzed.
Results: VNS therapy resulted in reduction of seizures (more than 90%) and a significant improvement in cerebellar function demonstrated on neurological examination. The patient reported improved quality of life based in part on her ability to perform activities of daily living.
Conclusions: VNS therapy may be considered a treatment option for progressive myoclonus epilepsy. The effects of VNS on seizure control and cerebellar dysfunction may provide clues to the underlying mechanism(s) of action.