Evidence regarding the different treatment options of status epilepticus (SE) in adults is scarce. Large randomized trials cover only one treatment at early stage and suggest the superiority of benzodiazepines over placebo, of intravenous lorazepam over intravenous diazepam or over intravenous phenytoin alone, and of intramuscular midazolam over intravenous lorazepam. However, many patients will not be treated successfully with the first treatment step. A large randomized trial covering the treatment of established status (ESETT) has just been funded recently by the NIH and will not start before 2015, with expected results in 2018; a trial on the treatment of refractory status with general anesthetics was terminated early due to insufficient recruitment. Therefore, a prospective multicenter observational registry was set up; this may help in clinical decision-making until results from randomized trials are available.
SENSE is a prospective, multicenter registry for patients treated for SE. The primary objective is to document patient characteristics, treatment modalities and in-house outcome of consecutive adults admitted for SE treatment in each of the participating centres and to identify predictors of outcome. Pre-treatment, treatment-related and outcome variables are documented systematically. To allow for meaningful multivariate analysis in the patient subgroups with refractory SE, a cohort size of 1000 patients is targeted.
The results of the study will provide information about risks and benefits of specific treatment steps in different patient groups with SE at different points of time. Thus, it will support clinical decision-making and, furthermore, it will be helpful in the planning of treatment trials.
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