Future development of a depot antiepileptic drug: What are the ethical implications?

TitleFuture development of a depot antiepileptic drug: What are the ethical implications?
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsSequeira AJ, Buchman S, Lewis A, Karceski S
JournalEpilepsy Behav
Date Published2018 08
KeywordsAdolescent, Aged, Anticonvulsants, Delayed-Action Preparations, Drug Development, Epilepsy, Female, Forecasting, Humans, Male, Middle Aged, Personal Autonomy

Depot medications have been used for long-term treatment of many different medical conditions (schizophrenia, opioid addiction) and for prevention of pregnancy (birth control). In addition, proposals for depot medication for antidepressants have been made as a possible treatment for chronic depression. For the treatment of chronic epilepsy, there are currently no depot antiepileptic drugs (AEDs). However, there may be a role for them. Depot AEDs could improve medication adherence rates, thereby reducing the morbidity and mortality that are associated with ongoing seizures. This could help to reduce hospital costs for people with epilepsy. Potential patient populations that could benefit from a depot AED include patients with forgetfulness, socioeconomic barriers to access of daily oral medications, impaired gastric absorption or dysphagia, comorbid epilepsy and psychiatric disease, and personal preference to avoid the inconvenience of taking a medication daily or even multiple times per day. In this article, we review reasons to create a depot AED and the outcomes of doing so in the context of the pillars of bioethics: beneficence (to act in a patient's best interest), autonomy (to respect a patient as an individual and honor their preferences), nonmaleficence (to do no harm), and justice (to treat all persons fairly and equally).

Alternate JournalEpilepsy Behav
PubMed ID30032805

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