Eric Segal, MD: Effects of Diazepam Amid Concomitant Benzodiazepine Use

December 5, 2020
Eric Segal, MD

The director of pediatric epilepsy at the Northeast Regional Epilepsy Group discussed his study presented at AES 2020 which involved the effectiveness of diazepam nasal spray regardless of treatment regimen.

"The take home message is that there doesn’t appear to be a significant tolerance to benzodiazepines at the prescribed doses emergently. And second, we don’t see any increased side effects in that population.”

Recently presented data virtually at the 2020 American Epilepsy Society (AES) Annual Meeting, December 4–8, 2020, suggest that diazepam nasal spray remains effective in reducing the percentage of seizures regardless of whether patients concomitantly use other benzodiazepines as part of their daily antiseizure drug (ASD) regimen. The study, led by Eric Segal, MD, found that the percentage of seizure episodes using a single dose of the nasal spray was similar for those with concomitant benzodiazepines (90.5%) compared to those without (92.4%).

Segal, director, pediatric epilepsy, Northeast Regional Epilepsy Group, co-director, epileptology, Hackensack Meridian Health, and assistant professor of pediatrics and neurology, Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine, posed 2 questions in relation to his study. The first: do the patients who take benzodiazepines have a tolerance? And the second: would there be issues with giving more benzodiazepines on top of their daily ASD regimen?

In an interview with NeurologyLive, Segal detailed some of the findings and the answers to those questions, while also providing background on the history of diazepam nasal spray and why these results have such significance.

For more coverage of AES 2020, click here.

REFERENCE
Segal E, Tarquinio D, Miller I, et al. Evaluation of diazepam nasal spray in patients with epilepsy concomitantly using maintenance benzodiazepines: interim analysis from a phase 3, long-term, open-label safety study. Presented at AES 2020 Annual Meeting; December 4–8, 2020. Abstract 337.