Study investigates initial management of canine generalised epileptic seizures in primary-care veterinary practices in the United Kingdom
21 November 2022
A new study, funded by BSAVA PetSavers and published in the latest issue of the Journal of Small Animal Practice (JSAP), aimed to investigate how primary care clinicians in the UK approach initial management of canine generalised epileptic seizures, including factors potentially associated with prescription and choice of anti-seizure drugs.
The study “Approach to initial management of canine generalised epileptic seizures in primary-care veterinary practices in the United Kingdom” utilised the Small Animal Veterinary Surveillance Network to review electronic health records equating to 3,150,713 consultations (917,373 dogs) from 224 veterinary practices. Dogs older than 6 years were excluded. Five hundred and seventeen cases were included. Thirteen percent of the dogs received anti-seizure drugs at first presentation; the odds of administering anti-seizure drugs were about 14 times larger in dogs presented with cluster seizures. The most frequently chosen anti-seizure drugs were phenobarbital and imepitoin. Of the dogs presenting with a single seizure and at least 6-month follow-up, 20% did not have subsequent seizures recorded.
Anti-seizure drugs following a single epileptic seizure were rarely prescribed, in accordance with International Veterinary Epilepsy Task Force recommendations. Less than half of dogs initially presenting with cluster seizures were prescribed anti-seizure drugs. Imepitoin was frequently selected in the treatment of cluster seizures despite no authorisation for this purpose.
Nicola Di Girolamo, Editor of JSAP concluded: “Studies like this one are instrumental to understand how primary care clinicians comply with current recommendations. Additional efforts may be required to fully adhere to the International Veterinary Epilepsy Task Force recommendations; being aware of these gaps is the first step towards improvement.”
The full article can be found in the November issue of the Journal of Small Animal Practice and can be read online here: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/epdf/10.1111/jsap.13543
The Journal of Small Animal Practice is published monthly and access to all articles is free for BSAVA members. For information on how to become a BSAVA member visit https://bsava.com/membership/join-now/.
1 Green M, Lowrie M, Singleton D, Garosi L and McConnell K (2022) Approach to initial management of canine generalised epileptic seizures in primary-care veterinary practices in the United Kingdom Journal of Small Animal Practice, available at: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/epdf/10.1111/jsap.13543