Case series/case reports (Indigo)
This study assessed the prevalence and risk factors for SARS-CoV-2 infection in patients with epilepsy (PWE). Additionally, the course of COVID-19 and its impact on seizure control was investigated.
Subjects with definite (confirmed by positive RT-PCR nasopharyngeal swab or serum anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies) and probable COVID-19 were identified via telephone survey among PWE treated at the university epilepsy clinic. Of 252 screened subjects, 17 (6.7%) had definite and 14 (5.5%) probable COVID-19. The percentage of PWE with definite COVID-19 was much higher than the percentage of subjects with confirmed COVID-19 in Polish general population (3.65%). In the heterogenous population of PWE, including patients with drug-resistant epilepsy, physical/intellectual disability, and comorbidities, the authors were not able to identify any risk factors for contracting COVID-19. The course of infection was mild or moderate in all subjects, not requiring oxygen therapy or respiratory support. The most common symptoms were fever, fatigue, headaches, muscle aches, and loss of smell/taste and continued for approximately 7-21 days, except for loss of smell/taste which lasted usually several weeks. Seizure exacerbation was noted in only one pregnant patient with confirmed COVID-19 and it was likely related to decreased serum level of levetiracetam in the third trimester. The authors concluded that this study provided reassuring findings related to the low risk of seizure exacerbation in PWE during the course of COVID-19. Patients with epilepsy may be at increased risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection. Epilepsy characteristics are not likely to modify the risk of COVID-19.
Bosak M, Mazurkiewicz I, Wężyk K, Słowik A, Turaj W. COVID-19 among patients with epilepsy: Risk factors and course of the disease. Epilepsy Behav. 2021 Apr 24;120:107996. doi: 10.1016/j.yebeh.2021.107996.