Stable dosages of clobazam for Lennox-Gastaut syndrome are associated with sustained drop-seizure and total-seizure improvements over 3 years

Epilepsia. 2014 Apr;55(4):558-67. doi: 10.1111/epi.12561. Epub 2014 Mar 1.


Objective: To determine long-term safety and efficacy of adjunctive clobazam for patients with Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS).

Methods: Eligible patients from two randomized controlled trials (Phase II OV-1002 and Phase III OV-1012) were able to enroll in open-label extension (OLE) study OV-1004 beginning in December 2005 and received clobazam until they discontinued (mandatory at 2 years for patients outside the United States) or until study completion in March 2012. Patients in the United States could have received clobazam for 6 years before it became commercially available. Efficacy assessments included changes in rates of drop seizures and total seizures, responder rates (≥50%, ≥75%, or 100% decreases in seizure frequency vs. baseline), sustained efficacy over time, concomitant antiepileptic drug (AED) use, and global evaluations. Safety assessments included exposure to clobazam, laboratory assessments, physical and neurologic examinations, vital sign monitoring, electrocardiography monitoring, and adverse event reporting.

Results: Of 267 patients who enrolled in the OLE, 188 (70%) completed the trial. Two hundred seven patients were from the United States, which was the only country in which patients could be treated with clobazam for >2 years. Forty-four patients were treated with clobazam for 5 years, and 11 for 6 years. Because of the low number of Year 6 patients, this group is not reported separately. Improvements in baseline seizure rates were very stable over the course of the study, with a median 85% decrease in drop seizures at Year 1, 87% at Year 2, 92% at Year 3, 97% at Year 4, and a 91% decrease for patients who had reached Year 5. Similar results were observed for total seizures (79% decrease at both Years 1 and 2, 82% decrease at Year 3, 75% decrease at Year 4, and 85% decrease at Year 5). Responder rates were also stable for the duration of the trial. Of patients who had achieved a ≥50% decrease in median drop-seizure frequency from baseline to Month 3, 86% still had that degree of drop-seizure reduction at Year 3 (and 14% lost their initial responses), and 47% were drop-seizure-free. Most patients who had achieved drop-seizure freedom in the original controlled trials remained drop-seizure-free in the OLE. Based on parents' and physicians' ratings of global evaluations, 80% of patients were "very much improved" or "much improved" after 3 years. Of the 43 patients with concomitant AED data who were treated for 5 years, 30% increased, 19% decreased, and 51% had no change in numbers of AEDs versus their Week 4 regimens. The mean modal clobazam dosage was 0.90 mg/kg/day at Year 1 and 0.97 mg/kg/day at Year 5, suggesting that study patients did not need significant increases in dosage over time. The safety profile was what would be expected for clobazam for LGS patients over a 5-year span, and no new safety concerns developed over time.

Significance: In this largest and longest-running trial in LGS, adjunctive clobazam sustained seizure freedom and substantial seizure improvements at stable dosages through 3 years of therapy in this difficult- to-treat patient population. A PowerPoint slide summarizing this article is available for download in the Supporting Information section here.

Keywords: Antiepileptic drug; Benzodiazepines; Clinical trials; Drop seizures; Epilepsy.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial, Phase II
  • Clinical Trial, Phase III
  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Anticonvulsants / administration & dosage*
  • Benzodiazepines / administration & dosage*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Clobazam
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Intellectual Disability / diagnosis*
  • Intellectual Disability / drug therapy*
  • Intellectual Disability / physiopathology
  • Lennox Gastaut Syndrome
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Seizures / diagnosis*
  • Seizures / drug therapy*
  • Seizures / physiopathology
  • Spasms, Infantile / diagnosis*
  • Spasms, Infantile / drug therapy*
  • Spasms, Infantile / physiopathology
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Young Adult


  • Anticonvulsants
  • Benzodiazepines
  • Clobazam

Supplementary concepts

  • Epileptic encephalopathy, Lennox-Gastaut type