Status epilepticus (SE) is the most severe form of epilepsy and is a neurological emergency that requires urgent treatment to avoid possible permanent brain damage, death or other lasting problems. The diagnosis of status epilepticus is considered when someone has a seizure for longer than five minutes OR has two or more seizures occurring within a five-minute time span without returning to a normal level of consciousness between the seizures.
Based on SE duration and response to treatment, it is divided into four stages: early, established, refractory and super-refractory status epilepticus. For this clinical study, the RESET study, investigators are looking at the second stage of SE, established status epilepticus (ESE), which is defined as SE that persists despite the first-line treatment (usually with benzodiazepine). Based on a variety of factors such as cause, age, and duration of the seizure, approximately 3% – 26% of patients with SE do not survive. Since longer seizures lead to greater risk of injury and death, it is important to treat patients experiencing SE as quickly as possible to try to stop the seizures.
There is a significant proportion of both children and adults with SE that have prior history of epilepsy, however, it is not possible to predict who will have SE or identify who is at risk since as many as half (50%) of patients with SE have never had it before.
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