Effects of lamotrigine compared with levetiracetam on anger, hostility, and total mood in patients with partial epilepsy

Epilepsia. 2009 Mar;50(3):434-42. doi: 10.1111/j.1528-1167.2008.01792.x. Epub 2008 Nov 4.

Abstract

Purpose: To assess anger/hostility during treatment with lamotrigine adjunctive therapy versus levetiracetam adjunctive therapy in patients with partial seizures.

Methods: This randomized, double-blind, parallel-group study in adults with partial seizures included an 8-week escalation phase, during which adjunctive lamotrigine (n = 132) or adjunctive levetiracetam (n = 136) was titrated to a target dose, and a 12-week, double-blind maintenance phase, during which dosages of study medication and concomitant antiepileptic drugs were maintained. The primary endpoint was change from baseline to the end of the maintenance phase (week 20) in the Anger-Hostility subscale score of the Profile of Mood States (POMS).

Results: Improvement with lamotrigine relative to levetiracetam was observed for mean +/- SD (standard deviation) change from baseline to the end of the maintenance phase (week 20) on the Anger-Hostility subscale (lamotrigine -2.0 +/- 8.2, levetiracetam -0.3 +/- 8.4; p = 0.024) (the primary endpoint); the Anger-Hostility subscale on weeks 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 11, 12, 14, 16, 18, and 19; and the Total Mood Disturbance score on weeks 6, 7, 8, 9, 11, 12, 17, 19, and 20. Improvement (p < 0.05) with lamotrigine relative to levetiracetam was also observed on the POMS subscales Depression-Dejection, Vigor-Activity, Fatigue-Inertia, and Confusion-Bewilderment. No difference in seizure frequency was observed between groups. The most common adverse events with both medications were headache and dizziness.

Discussion: Adjunctive lamotrigine significantly improved Anger-Hostility subscale scores relative to adjunctive levetiracetam in patients with partial seizures at the end of 20 weeks. This difference was consistently observed throughout the treatment period. Similar improvement with lamotrigine versus levetiracetam was observed for other mood symptoms.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Affect / drug effects*
  • Anger / drug effects*
  • Anticonvulsants / adverse effects
  • Anticonvulsants / therapeutic use*
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Drug Administration Schedule
  • Drug Therapy, Combination
  • Epilepsies, Partial / drug therapy*
  • Female
  • Hostility*
  • Humans
  • Lamotrigine
  • Levetiracetam
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Personality Inventory / statistics & numerical data
  • Piracetam / adverse effects
  • Piracetam / analogs & derivatives*
  • Piracetam / therapeutic use
  • Psychometrics
  • Triazines / adverse effects
  • Triazines / therapeutic use*

Substances

  • Anticonvulsants
  • Triazines
  • Levetiracetam
  • Lamotrigine
  • Piracetam