Expanding Research on Social Determinants of Health in Epilepsy: Joseph Sirven, MD


The professor of neurology at Mayo Clinic detailed the next steps in understanding more about the impact social determinants of health have on epilepsy care.

"When they did get treated, it was anywhere between 180 days, which was the mean, and 73 days, which was the median. It makes you wonder what’s going on. That’s the question [the] research takes us [to]. Those are where the issues have to come [to].”

At the 2021 American Academy of Neurology (AAN) Annual Meeting, April 17-22, Joseph Sirven, MD, and colleagues presented research which examined the role of social determinants of health on treatment delays for individuals with epilepsy enrolled in Arizona’s Medicaid program. They found that diagnosis occurring in inpatient settings were 2 times more likely to be treated within 30 days than those diagnosed in office settings.

Other notable findings showed that variables such as age, race, marital status, homelessness, and poverty all significant attributed to the extent of epilepsy treatment delays. According to Sirven, this is only the beginning of research on social determinants of health in epilepsy, which has been very limited in the literature up to this point.

Sirven, a professor of neurology at Mayo Clinic, sat down with NeurologyLive to provide his insight on the future of research in this space, along with specific factors and groups that need further examination on a national level.

For more coverage of AAN 2021, click here.

Sirven J, Sprout G, Speer M, Simic G, Reddy S. The role of social determinants in epilepsy treatment delays for Arizonans on Medicaid. Presented at American Academy of Neurology Annual Meeting; April 17-22. Abstract P11.008
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