Long Term VNS effectiveness

A new study from the journal Epilepsy & Behaviour suggests that vagul nerve stimulation ( VNS) is effective and safe for children in the long term.

Study authors Dilek Yalnizoglu and colleagues investigated 58 children in Turkey with hard to treat epilepsy who had VNS put in between 1997 and 2018. The average follow up was around six years, although it ranged from three months to 20 years.

The researchers found that just under half of the children had their seizures reduced by at least half, with three children becoming seizure free. The effectiveness of the VNS wasn’t affected by the cause of the epilepsy, how long they had had epilepsy or what age they had the VNS put in. However, it worked better in the children who had focal seizures. more than half of the children also had a better quality of life.

The most common side-effects were voice change and a pins and needles sensation.