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FDA Approves Medical Device to Treat Epilepsy » "The U. Food and Drug Administration today approved a device to help reduce the frequency of seizures in epilepsy patients who have not responded well to medications.The RNS Stimulator consists of a small neurostimulator implanted within "...Read the FDA Approves Medical Device to Treat Epilepsy article » Since Klonopin produces CNS depression, patients receiving this drug should be cautioned against engaging in hazardous occupations requiring mental alertness, such as operating machinery or driving a motor vehicle.

Antiepileptic drugs (AEDs), including Klonopin, increase the risk of suicidal thoughts or behavior in patients taking these drugs for any indication.

Patients treated with any AED for any indication should be monitored for the emergence or worsening of depression, suicidal thoughts or behavior, and/or any unusual changes in mood or behavior.

Pooled analyses of 199 placebo-controlled clinical trials (mono-and adjunctive therapy) of 11 different AEDs showed that patients randomized to one of the AEDs had approximately twice the risk (adjusted Relative Risk 1.8, 95% CI:1.2, 2.7) of suicidal thinking or behavior compared to patients randomized to placebo.

In these trials, which had a median treatment duration of 12 weeks, the estimated incidence rate of suicidal behavior or ideation among 27,863 AED-treated patients was 0.43% compared to 0.24% among 16,029 placebo-treated patients, representing an increase of approximately one case of suicidal thinking or behavior for every 530 patients treated.

There were four suicides in drug-treated patients in the trials and none in placebo-treated patients, but the number is too small to allow any conclusion about drug effect on suicide.

The increased risk of suicidal thoughts or behavior with AEDs was observed as early as one week after starting drug treatment with AEDs and persisted for the duration of treatment assessed.Because most trials included in the analysis did not extend beyond 24 weeks, the risk of suicidal thoughts or behavior beyond 24 weeks could not be assessed.The risk of suicidal thoughts or behavior was generally consistent among drugs in the data analyzed.The finding of increased risk with AEDs of varying mechanisms of action and across a range of indications suggests that the risk applies to all AEDs used for any indication.The risk did not vary substantially by age (5-100 years) in the clinical trials analyzed.Table 1 shows absolute and relative risk by indication for all evaluated AEDs.

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