45ºF

$21.4M grant to fund major seizure study at UVa

$21.4M grant to fund major seizure study at UVa (Image 1) (Copyright by WSLS - All rights reserved)

CHARLOTTESVILLE (WSLS 10) - Researchers at the University of Virginia School of Medicine announced they're launching a major clinical trial to determine the best medication to save people from potentially deadly prolonged seizures, known as status epilepticus, when other drugs have failed.

Lead investigator Jaideep Kapur, MD, PhD, of the UVa Department of Neurology said in a written statement, "This is a very severe, sometimes life-threatening seizure. Status epilepticus is a seizure that doesn't stop." 

Officials say Kapur has received a $21.4 million grant to conduct a five-year trial from the National Institutes of Neurological Disorders and Stroke. They say 40 trial sites will test the three medications most commonly administered when initial treatments for status epilepticus have failed. 

They say, as of now, there is no clear understanding of which is best, so the trial has the potential to revolutionize the treatment of these patients.

UVa officials say Kapur and his team plan to evaluate up to 795 patients treated with one of the drugs at the 40 participating hospitals.