Comparative persistence of antiepileptic drugs in patients with epilepsy: A STROBE-compliant retrospective cohort study

Edward Chia Cheng Lai, Cheng Yang Hsieh, Chien Chou Su, Yea Huei Kao Yang, Chin Wei Huang, Swu Jane Lin, Soko Setoguchi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


We compared persistence of antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) including carbamazepine, oxcarbazepine, gabapentin, lamotrigine, topiramate, valproic acid, and phenytoin in an Asian population with epilepsy. A retrospective cohort study was conducted by analyzing Taiwan's National Health Insurance Research Database (NHIRD). Adult epilepsy patients newly prescribed with AEDs between 2005 and 2009 were included. The primary outcome was persistence, defined as the treatment duration from the date of AED initiation to the date of AED discontinuation, switching, hospitalization due to seizure or disenrollment from databases, whichever came first. Cox proportional hazard models were used to estimate the risk of non-persistence with AEDs. Among the 13,061 new users of AED monotherapy (mean age: 58 years; 60% men), the persistence ranged from 218.8 (gabapentin) to 275.9 (oxcarbazepine) days in the first treatment year. The risks of non-persistence in patients receiving oxcarbazepine (adjusted hazard ratio [HR], 0.78; 95% CI, 0.74-0.83), valproic acid (0.88; 0.85-0.92), lamotrigine (0.72; 0.65-0.81), and topiramate (0.90; 0.82-0.98) were significantly lower than in the carbamazepine group. Compared with carbamazepine users, the non-persistence risk was higher in phenytoin users (1.10; 1.06-1.13), while gabapentin users (1.03; 0.98-1.09) had similar risk. For risk of hospitalization due to seizure and in comparison with carbamazepine users, oxcarbazepine (0.66; 0.58-0.74) and lamotrigine (0.46; 0.35-0.62) users had lower risk, while phenytoin (1.35; 1.26-1.44) users had higher risk. The results remained consistent throughout series of sensitivity and stratification analyses. The persistence varied among AEDs and was better for oxcarbazepine, valproic acid, lamotrigine, and topiramate, but worse for phenytoin when compared with carbamazepine.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere4481
JournalMedicine (United States)
Issue number35
StatePublished - 2016
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Medicine(all)


  • Antiepileptic drugs
  • Comparative effectiveness research
  • Epilepsy
  • Persistence
  • Treatment retention

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Comparative persistence of antiepileptic drugs in patients with epilepsy: A STROBE-compliant retrospective cohort study'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this