Effectiveness of Medium Chain Triglyceride Ketogenic Diet in Thai Children with Intractable Epilepsy

J Med Assoc Thai. 2016 Feb;99(2):159-65.


Objective: To determine the efficacy, side effects and feasibility of Medium chain triglyceride (MCT) ketogenic diet (KD) in Thai children with intractable epilepsy.

Material and method: Children with intractable epilepsy were recruited. Baseline seizure frequency was recorded over 4 weeks before starting MCT KD. Average seizure frequency was assessed at 1 month and 3 months, compared to the baseline using Wilcoxon Signed Rank Test. Side effects and feasibility were also assessed by blood tests and an interview.

Results: Sixteen subjects were recruited with mean seizure frequency of 0.35-52.5 per day. After treatment, there was a significant reduction in seizure frequency, ranging from 12% to 100% (p = 0.002 at 1 month, and 0.001 at 3 months). 64.3% of the subjects achieved more than 50% seizure reduction at 3 months and 28.6% of the patients were seizure-free. Common adverse effects were initial weight loss (37.5%) and nausea (25%). 87.5% of subjects and parents were satisfied with the MCT KD with 2 cases dropping-out due to diarrhea and non-compliance.

Conclusion: MCT ketogenic diet is effective and feasible in Thai children with intractable epilepsy. Despite modification against Asian culinary culture, the tolerability and maintenance rate was still satisfactory. A larger study is required.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Diet, Ketogenic*
  • Drug Resistant Epilepsy / diet therapy*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Male
  • Thailand
  • Triglycerides / therapeutic use*


  • Triglycerides