“We’re talking about 10% of cases where there can be a problem. Even without medications, even normal people may have a 2% to 3% risk of a birth defect in their child. This may increase to 7% or  10% depending on the type of medicine we are using, how many medicines we are using, and what dosage we are using, and so on. We can customize and give an individualized risk to each person, and this is quite reassuring.”

Women with epilepsy often come forward with concerns regarding their risk of complications during pregnancy, as well as questions with how their treatment plan might be altered in that timeframe. However, despite serious concerns, research suggests that almost 90% of women with epilepsy who are pregnant will have no complications and will deliver healthy babies.

At the 2019 International Epilepsy Congress, June 22-26, in Bangkok, Thailand, Sanjeev V. Thomas, MD, DM, chief, neurology, Sree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology, gave a presentation on how to manage epilepsy during pregnancy.

While at the congress, Thomas spoke with NeurologyLive about how to go about addressing the concerns of patients with epilepsy who are pregnant or planning on becoming pregnant, and how physicians can provide an individualized risk percentage to calm some of those fears. Thomas noted that proper planning and preparation between the patient and the physician can ensure that if the patient needs to be on medication, the right medicine can be used, and all scenarios can be prepared for.

For more coverage of IEC 2019, click here.


REFERENCES
Thomas SV. Managing epilepsy treatment during pregnancy with current knowledge and limited resources. Presented at: 2019 International Epilepsy Congress. June 22-26, 2019; Bangkok, Thailand.