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Unmet needs and perspectives in management of drug resistant focal epilepsy: An Italian study

HumanInsight Unmet needs and perspectives in management of drug resistant focal epilepsy: An Italian study

Epilepsy Behav. 2022 Nov 4;137(Pt A):108950. doi: 10.1016/j.yebeh.2022.108950. Online ahead of print.


This study aimed to evaluate the consensus level between a representative group of Italian neurologists and people with Drug-Resistant Epilepsy (DRE) regarding a series of statements about different aspects involved in the management of epilepsy to identify the unmet needs of the People with Epilepsy (PwE) and the future perspectives for the management of this disease. This observational study was conducted using a classic Delphi technique. A 19-statement questionnaire was administered anonymously through an online platform to a panel of expert clinicians and a panel of PwE, analyzing three main topics of interest: drug resistance, access to care, and PwE's experience. The consensus was achieved on 8 of the 19 statements administered to the panel of medical experts and on 4 of the 14 submitted to the panel of PwE, particularly on the definition of DRE and its consequences on treatment, Quality of Life (QoL), and autonomy of PwE. Most of the items, however, did not reach a consensus and highlighted the lack of a shared univocal view on some topics, such as accessibility to care throughout the country and the role of emerging tools such as telemedicine, narrative medicine, and digital devices. In many cases, the two panels expressed different views on the statements. The results outlined many fields of possible intervention, such as the need for educational initiatives targeted at physicians and PwE - for example, regarding telemedicine, digital devices, and narrative medicine - as well as the spread of better knowledge about epilepsy among the general population, in order to reduce epilepsy stigma. Institutions, moreover, could take a cue from this survey to develop facilities aimed at enhancing PwE's autonomy and promoting more equal access to care throughout the country.

PMID:36347069 | DOI:10.1016/j.yebeh.2022.108950

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