Are we discussing SUDEP?-A retrospective case note analysis

B. Waddell, K. McColl, C. Turner, A. Norman, A. Coker, K. White, R. Roberts, C. A. Heath

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    41 Citations (Scopus)


    Purpose: Sudden unexplained death in epilepsy (SUDEP) is uncommon. Discussing the risk of SUDEP can be difficult, particularly in those where the risk is considered low, and previous studies have suggested that clinical practice varies widely. The Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network (SIGN) suggest information on SUDEP is "essential" and National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE) recommend that "tailored information on the person's relative risk of SUDEP should be part of the counselling process ...". The study aimed to evaluate if discussion of SUDEP risk is being documented in clinical records and to determine if there is an association between documented discussion and risk factors for SUDEP.

    Methods: A retrospective case note review was undertaken in those with an established diagnosis of epilepsy attending clinic between 1st January 2009 and 30th June 2009.

    Results: Overall, a documented SUDEP discussion was noted in 14/345 (4%) cases. Patients were statistically more likely to have a documented SUDEP discussion if they had ongoing generalised tonic-clonic seizures, with a trend also towards informing those non-compliant with medication.

    Conclusion: Patients were more likely to be informed of SUDEP if they had potentially modifiable risk factors identified. There was, however, no documented evidence to suggest that SUDEP is being discussed in the majority of cases. (C) 2012 British Epilepsy Association. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)74-76
    Number of pages3
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - Jan 2013


    • Epilepsy
    • SUDEP


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