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Chapter 31. Epilepsy

Student Questions

Which of the following neurotransmitters is targeted by antiepileptic drugs?

A. Norepinephrine

B. Glutamate

C. Serotonin

D. Acetylcholine

Answer: B

Option A: Incorrect. Norepinephrine is a neurotransmitter, but is not a primary target of antiepileptic drugs.

Option B: Correct. Glutamate is an excitatory neurotransmitter that is targeted by several antiepileptic drugs. The other options have not been documented to have a major role in seizures or epilepsy.

Option C: Incorrect. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter, but is not a primary target of antiepileptic drugs.

Option D: Incorrect. Acetylcholine is a neurotransmitter, but is not a primary target of antiepileptic drugs.

A 28-year-old woman is started on carbamazepine for partial seizures. Which of the following should she take in addition to carbamazepine?

A. Vitamin C

B. Riboflavin

C. Vitamin A

D. Folic acid

Answer: D

Option A: Incorrect. Vitamin C is not influenced by carbamazepine, and supplementation is unnecessary.

Option B: Incorrect. Riboflavin is not influenced by carbamazepine, and supplementation is unnecessary.

Option C: Incorrect. Vitamin A is not influenced by carbamazepine, and supplementation is unnecessary.

Option D: Correct. Neural tube defects are a concern in this patient if she becomes pregnant. Folic acid is recommended to reduce the risk of neural tube defects, and is recommended in women of childbearing potential who take antiepileptic drugs.

A 28–year-old woman is taking lamotrigine for seizures. She comes to clinic today and is 3 months pregnant. Which of the following would be of greatest concern over the remainder of her pregnancy?

A. Small birth weight baby

B. Cognitive impairment in baby

C. Increased seizures

D. Premature labor

Answer: C

Option A: Incorrect. Lamotrigine is not associated with small birth weight in infants.

Option B: Incorrect. Lamotrigine does not alter cognitive ability in infants. Valproate is the only AED documented to impair cognition in infants and children.

Option C: Correct. Dosing requirements of lamotrigine increase during pregnancy, so if doses are not appropriately increased there is an increased risk of seizures.

Option D. ...

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