Electronic ISSN 2287-0237

VOLUME

FEMALE SEX HORMONES AND EPILEPSY

SEPTEMBER 2015 - VOL.10 | REVIEWS ARTICLE

The frequency of seizures in many female epilepsy patients can be affected by their menstruation cycle: a phenomenon known as ‘catamenial epilepsy’. This can be classified into three types-C1 (perimenstrual catamenial epilepsy), C2 (periovulatory catamenial epilepsy), and C3 (inadequate luteal catamenial epilepsy). Hormonal contraception can also affect the control of a seizure as well as the level of some antiepileptic medications, while some anticonvulsive agents can also reduce the efficacy of contraceptive pills. There is still limited evidence on the treatment of catamenial epilepsy, but a variety of therapeutic regimens can be tried including hormonal therapy, modification of antiepileptic medication regimen during the menstruation cycle, intermittent benzodiazepine, intermittent acetazolamide, or some investigative agents such as neuroactive steroid ganaxolone.

Keywords

female sex hormones, epilepsy, catamenial epilepsy, antiepileptic medications

MEDIA
Figure 1: Normal menstrual cycle.
Figure 2A: Catamenial epilepsy associated with normal menstrual cycle.
Figure 2B: Catamenial epilepsy associated with normal menstrual cycle.
Table 1: A summary of combined oral contraceptive options.
Figure 3: The blood concentration of lamotrigine in each gestational period.
Table 2: List of anti-Epileptic medications that affect the efficacy of oral contraceptives.
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