OBJECTIVE - To determine the feasibility of administering a diazepam nasal spray formulation (diazepam-NS) to adults with epilepsy during a generalized tonic-clonic seizure or in the postictal period following a tonic-clonic or other seizure type, to assess pharmacokinetics and to assess tolerability.
METHODS - An open-label study was conducted in patients admitted to the epilepsy monitoring unit. Eligible patients received a single dose of diazepam-NS approximating 0.2 mg/kg. Plasma diazepam concentrations were measured serially up to 12 h postdose, and maximum observed plasma concentration (Cmax ); time to maximum concentration (Tmax ); and the area under the plasma concentration-time curve for time zero to last sampling time (AUC0-12 ) were estimated and dose-normalized. Pharmacodynamic assessments included Kaplan-Meier analysis to determine the time-to-next seizure. Safety and tolerability were assessed.
RESULTS - Of the 78 patients who consented, 30 had treatment and pharmacokinetic data. Ten patients were treated during a convulsive tonic-clonic seizure, seven within 5 min following the last clonic jerk, and 13 in the postictal period ≥ 5 min after a tonic-clonic or following other seizure-types. Diazepam median Tmax was 45 min. Dose-normalized mean Cmax and AUC0-12 values of diazepam were comparable among patients regardless of the timing of diazepam-NS administration in relation to seizure. Of those treated, 65% were seizure-free during the 12-h observation period and 35% had post-dose seizures. Treatment was well tolerated, with no unexpected safety findings: 74% had mild and 25% had moderate adverse events. Nasopharyngeal signs were resolved by 12 h postdose.
SIGNIFICANCE - Diazepam can be delivered in effective therapeutic concentrations by a nasal spray device during the convulsive phase of tonic-clonic seizures or in the postictal periods following tonic-clonic or other seizure types.
Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2014 International League Against Epilepsy.