Background: Previous studies have reported inconsistent results regarding the potential relationships between addictive behaviors and the risk of epilepsy.
Objective: To assess whether genetically predicted addictive behaviors are causally associated with the risk of epilepsy outcomes.
Methods: The causation between five addictive behaviors (including cigarettes per day, alcoholic drinks per week, tea intake, coffee intake, and lifetime cannabis use) and epilepsy was evaluated by using a two-sample Mendelian Randomization (MR) analysis. The inverse-variance weighted (IVW) method was used as the primary outcome. The other MR analysis methods (MR Egger, weighted median, simulation extrapolation corrected MR-Egger, and Mendelian Randomization Pleiotropy Residual Sum and Outlier (MR-PRESSO)) were performed to complement IVW. In addition, the robustness of the MR analysis results was assessed by leave-one-out analysis.
Results: The IVW analysis method indicated an approximately 20% increased risk of epilepsy per standard deviation increase in lifetime cannabis use (odds ratio [OR], 1.20; 95% confidence interval [CI]), 1.02-1.42, P = 0.028). However, there is no causal association between the other four addictive behaviors and the risk of epilepsy (cigarettes per day: OR, 1.04; 95% CI, 0.92-1.18, P = 0.53; alcoholic drinks per week: OR, 1.31; 95% CI, 0.93-1.84, P = 0.13; tea intake: OR, 1.15; 95% CI, 0.84-1.56, P = 0.39; coffee intake: OR, 0.86; 95% CI, 0.59-1.23, P = 0.41). The other MR analysis methods and further leave-one-out sensitivity analysis suggested the results were robust.
Conclusion: This MR study indicated a potential genetically predicted causal association between lifetime cannabis use and higher risk of epilepsy. As for the other four addictive behaviors, no evidence of a causal relationship with the risk of epilepsy was found in this study.
Keywords: Addictive behaviors; Cannabis; Causal; Epilepsy; Mendelian randomization.
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