Epileptogenic Potential of Carbapenem Agents

Mechanism of Action, Seizure Rates, and Clinical Considerations

April D. Miller, Pharm.D.; Amanda M. Ball, Pharm.D.; P. Brandon Bookstaver, Pharm.D.; Emily K. Dornblaser, Pharm.D.; Charles L. Bennett, M.D., Ph.D.


Pharmacotherapy. 2011;31(4):408-423. 

In This Article

Literature Search Methods

We conducted an electronic search of the MEDLINE (1966–May 2010), EMBASE (1974–May 2010), and International Pharmaceutical Abstracts (1970–May 2010) databases for relevant citations. Search terms used included a combination of the following: carbapenem, imipenem-cilastatin, meropenem, doripenem, ertapenem, seizure, convulsion, neurotoxicity, valproic acid, and drug interaction. Limits on each search were placed for English-language articles. All references related to the topic were assessed including randomized controlled trials, meta-analyses, case series, and case reports. When studies of each agent did not report the rate of seizure activity or complete case information, the corresponding author was contacted to collect information related to seizure whenever possible. Additional inquiries were made to industry representatives for database searches on postmarketing reports, when applicable. Reference citations from retrieved references were scanned for additional information.


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