Potential prophylactic use of benzodiazepines for hemodialysis-associated seizures

Sonmez F., Mir S., Tutuncuoglu S.

PEDIATRIC NEPHROLOGY, vol.14, no.5, pp.367-369, 2000 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 14 Issue: 5
  • Publication Date: 2000
  • Doi Number: 10.1007/s004670050776
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.367-369
  • Keywords: diazepam, hemodialysis-associated seizure, prevention, treatment
  • Bezmialem Vakıf University Affiliated: No


Hemodialysis-associated seizure (HAS) is a common complication of hemodialysis. The efficiency of anticonvulsant drugs in treating or preventing seizures is poorly defined. In this study, children on long-term hemodialysis were examined for HAS and the effect of diazepam prophylaxis on HAS was investigated. Nine patients with a mean age of 14.1+/-2.8 years had HAS and 4 with a mean age of 13.0+/-4.4 years had never experienced HAS. The patients with HAS had tonic-clonic seizures. Four patients had focal slow-wave paroxysms, especially in the parieto-occipital regions; 2 had subcortical epileptiform discharges by electroencephalography. No correlation was observed between HAS and patient age, primary disease, prior history of seizures, type of dialysis, duration of hemodialysis, anemia, hyperparathyroidism, and administration of erythropoietin. Hypertension due to hypervolemia may also play a role in the development of HAS. Five patients with HAS first treated with phenobarbital (PB) had recurrence of seizures. As a dialyzable antiepileptic PB may be associated with an increased risk for HAS. In a preliminary study, we gave diazepam as a prophylactic therapy to 4 patients with HAS. During 6 months of follow-up, these patients had no seizures. The number of HAS was significantly different between the groups receiving PB and diazepam (z=-2,58, P=0.009). In conclusion, administration of diazepam per os to patients with HAS may be of value for preventing recurrence of HAS.