Keto Diets May Benefit Suffers of Super-refractory Status Epilepticus, Study Suggests

Today, our article is focused around how a keto diet may help individuals suffering from a relatively rare form of epilepsy known as super-refractory status epilepticus or SRSE.

Always severe and sometimes even fatal, SRSE is characterized by prolonged seizures. Medically induced comas are often used as a preventive measure to restrict further brain and body damage.

As reported by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than five million people in the U.S. have a seizure disorder. More than one hundred and fifty thousand people in the U.S. each year will develop refractory status epilepticus and, according to published studies, about half of those will develop super-refractory seizures.

According to a report published online in the renowned peer-reviewed medical journal Neurology, a clinical trial conducted by Johns Hopkins researchers indicates that low-carbohydrate, high-fat ketogenic diets can be an effective and safe option for the treatment of adults experiencing super-refractory status epilepticus.

The Johns Hopkins researchers conducted the trials on different patients within the age brackets of eighteen to eighty-two. Eight anti-seizure medications were provided to the entire research population before introducing a ketogenic diet. The diet was administered over a period of seventy-two hours through feeding tubes, while the patients were in a medically induced coma. The anaesthesia was tapered off after seventy-two hours to evaluate the effect of keto diets on them.  

Interestingly, super-refractory seizures had stopped for almost eighty percent of the patients that completed the entire ketogenic diet course. Some of them recovered completely within a week. In the near future, the team of researchers plan to carry out the next phase of study to determine the efficiency rate of this treatment alternative by comparing the results after treating a group with both non-ketogenic and ketogenic diet.  


Image credits:
National Center for Advancing Translational Medicine via Flickr.

Rights information: CC BY 2.0

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