Tolerance, adherence, and acceptability of a ketogenic 2.5:1 ratio, nutritionally complete, medium chain triglyceride-containing liquid feed in children and adults with drug-resistant epilepsy following a ketogenic diet

Corbin Griffen, Natasha E. Schoeler, Robert Browne, Tracy Cameron, Martin Kirkpatrick, Seema Thowfeek, Judith Munn, Helena Champion, Nicole Mills, Siân Phillips, Linda Air, Anita Devlin, Claire Nicol, Susan Macfarlane, Victoria Bittle, Phillipa Thomas, Lisa Cooke, Julia Ackril, Astrid Allford, Vanessa AppleyardClare Szwec, Kiranjit Atwal, Gary P. Hubbard (Lead / Corresponding author), Rebecca J. Stratton

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Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To investigate incorporating a ready-to-use 2.5:1 ratio liquid feed into a ketogenic diet (KD) in children and adults with drug-resistant epilepsy.

METHODS: Following a three-day baseline, patients (n = 19; age: 19 years [SD 13], range: 8-46 years) followed a KD for 28 days (control period), then incorporated ≥200 mL/day of a ready-to-use liquid feed, made with a ratio of 2.5 g of fat to 1 g of protein plus carbohydrate and including medium chain triglycerides ([MCTs]; 25.6% of total fat/100 mL) for 28 days as part of their KD (intervention period). Outcome measures (control vs intervention period) included gastrointestinal (GI) tolerance, adherence to KD and intervention feed, dietary intake, blood ß-hydroxybutyrate (BHB) concentration, seizure outcomes, health-related quality of life (HRQoL), acceptability and safety.

RESULTS: Compared to the control period, during the intervention period, the percentage of patients reporting no GI symptoms increased (+5% [SD 5], p = 0.02); adherence to the KD prescription was similar (p = 0.92) but higher in patients (n = 5) with poor adherence (<50%) to KD during the control period (+33% [SD 26], p = 0.049); total MCT intake increased (+12.1 g/day [SD 14.0], p = 0.002), driven by increases in octanoic (C8; +8.3 g/day [SD 6.4], p < 0.001) and decanoic acid (C10; +5.4 g/day [SD 5.4], p < 0.001); KD ratio decreased (p = 0.047), driven by a nonsignificant increase in protein intake (+11 g/day [SD 44], p = 0.29); seizure outcomes were similar (p ≥ 0.63) but improved in patients (n = 6) with the worst seizure outcomes during the control period (p = 0.04); and HRQoL outcomes were similar. The intervention feed was well adhered to (96% [SD 8]) and accepted (≥88% of patients confirmed).

SIGNIFICANCE: These findings provide an evidence-base to support the effective management of children and adults with drug-resistant epilepsy following a KD with the use of a ready-to-use, nutritionally complete, 2.5:1 ratio feed including MCTs.

PLAIN LANGUAGE SUMMARY: This study examined the use of a ready-to-use, nutritionally complete, 2.5:1 ratio (2.5 g of fat to 1 g of protein plus carbohydrate) liquid feed, including medium chain triglycerides (MCTs), into a ketogenic diet (KD) in children and adults with drug-resistant epilepsy. The results show that the 2.5:1 ratio feed was well tolerated, adhered to, and accepted in these patients. Increases in MCT intake (particularly C8 and C10) and improvements in seizure outcomes (reduced seizure burden and intensity) and KD adherence also occurred with the 2.5:1 ratio feed in patients with the worst seizures and adherence, respectively.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)727-738
Number of pages12
JournalEpilepsia open
Volume9
Issue number2
Early online date27 Feb 2024
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2024

Keywords

  • Child
  • Adult
  • Humans
  • Young Adult
  • Diet, Ketogenic/adverse effects
  • Quality of Life
  • Drug Resistant Epilepsy
  • Triglycerides
  • Seizures
  • Carbohydrates

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