Results of US National Survery Show Epilepsy Treatments Often Put Limits on Patients' Lifestyles - Though the defining and most debilitating symptom of epilepsy is repeated seizures, a recent national survey reveals that the impact of epilepsy on patients' lives can go beyond this one symptom. While 85% of U.S. adults with epilepsy who are currently taking at least one medication are satisfied with their treatment regimen's ability to control seizures, almost half of the survey respondents (46%) said that they experience side effects from their medication. A majority of those respondents who reported side effects said fogginess or lack of clear headedness (77%), sleepiness (63%), and dizziness (60%) limit their ability to perform daily activities.

The online survey, which included 367 U.S. adults who have been diagnosed with epilepsy and currently take one or more epilepsy medications, was conducted by Harris InteractiveŽ and sponsored by The Changing Faces of Epilepsy, a newly created epilepsy educational program sponsored by Eisai Inc. The program focuses on helping people live their life with epilepsy - a life beyond successful seizure control - and encourages patients to seek treatment that not only reduces incidence of seizure, but may enable them to participate more fully in the daily activities that are most important to them.

"This survey underscores the need for physicians and their patients to define successful epilepsy treatment as treatment of more than just seizures," says Kevan VanLandingham, MD, PhD, Associate Clinical Professor of Neurology, and Attending Physician at Duke University Medical Center. "Physicians, in partnership with their patients, can find the right treatment that helps address individual patients' needs, such as reducing the frequency of seizures while managing side effects."

More than half of those surveyed (51%) said they were prevented by epilepsy from participating in at least one routine activity as much as they would like, including driving (37%), working (34%), exercising or playing sports (25%) and traveling (21%). However, following diagnosis, patients and their health care providers often focus mainly on seizure control. For example, less than half of respondents (47%) said their healthcare provider addressed how epilepsy treatment may impact their current lifestyle.

Further, results show that medication side effects can greatly impair a patient's ability to perform daily activities. Of the 46% of respondents who reported experiencing side effects from their epilepsy medications:

-- The following side effects were experienced "often:" sleepiness (48%), fogginess or lack of clear headedness (35%), and weight gain (24%).

-- Side effects that impair their ability to perform daily activities "a great deal" include sleepiness (35%), fogginess (33%) and weight gain (19%).

-- 57% said they cannot work as much as they would like and 55% can't drive as much as they would like.

"The challenges faced by people with epilepsy include maintaining a 'normal' lifestyle, one in which they can perform activities most people consider 'routine,'" said Dr. VanLandingham. "Patients may want to talk to their physicians about re-examining their current treatment if they are not living the life they want as a result of their epilepsy or epilepsy treatment. Patients may also wish to share their personal experiences with epilepsy, such as frequency of seizures, side effects or problems complying with medication, in order to ensure the right treatment for them."

There are many treatment choices available for people with epilepsy, including ZonegranŽ (zonisamide) capsules, an anti-epileptic drug (AED) approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as adjunctive therapy in the treatment of all partial seizures in adults with epilepsy. Zonegran is the only once-a-day newer AED available for adults (16 and older) with epilepsy.

For more information on Zonegran and The Changing Faces of Epilepsy, visit changingfacesofepilepsy.

Information about Zonegran (zonisamide capsules)

Zonegran is an anti-epileptic drug approved in March 2000 by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as adjunctive therapy in the treatment of partial seizures in adults with epilepsy. In Europe, a Marketing Authorization Application was submitted through the European Union's (EUs) Centralized Procedure in November 2003.

Zonegran is a sulfonamide. Hypersensitivity or other serious reactions may occur. Serious skin and hematologic reactions (in the blood or blood-forming organs) have occurred. Physicians should consider discontinuing the drug in patients who develop an otherwise unexplained rash.

Oligohidrosis (decreased sweating) has been reported in association with Zonegran therapy in pediatric patients.

Zonegran is not approved for pediatric patients under the age of 16. Kidney stones have been reported in patients receiving Zonegran therapy. Patients should take special care when driving or if they operate complex machinery until they know how Zonegran may affect their performance.

For more information about managing epilepsy and about Zonegran, and for full prescribing information for Zonegran, please call 1-888-274-2378 or visit changingfacesofepilepsy. Please also see accompanying prescribing information.

Eisai acquired exclusive North American and European manufacturing and marketing rights to Zonegran from Elan in 2004. Elan had previously licensed Zonegran from Dainippon Pharmaceutical Co., Ltd. In Japan, the product is marketed by Dainippon under the brand name Excegran.

About the Survey

This survey, commissioned by Eisai Inc., was conducted online by Harris Interactive within the U.S. between October 11 and October 26, 2004 among 367 U.S. adults (aged 18+) who have been diagnosed with epilepsy and are currently taking at least one epilepsy medication. Figures for age, sex, race, education and income were weighted where necessary to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population. Propensity score weighting was also applied to adjust for respondents' propensity to be online.

In theory, with probability samples of this size, one could say with 95 percent certainty that the results for the overall sample have a sampling error of +/- 6 percentage points. Statistical precision for the sub-sample of U.S. adults with epilepsy who take at least one medication and who experience side effects (174) is plus or minus 8 percentage points. This online survey was not a probability sample.

About Eisai Inc.

Eisai Inc. is a U.S. pharmaceutical subsidiary of Eisai Co., Ltd., a research-based human health care company that discovers, develops and markets products in more than 30 countries. Established in 1995, Eisai Inc. began marketing its first product in the United States in 1997 and has rapidly grown to become an integrated pharmaceutical business with sales of more than $1.7 billion in fiscal year 2003 (year ending March 31, 2004).

Eisai Inc. employs approximately 1,100 people at its headquarters in Teaneck, NJ, at its state-of-the-art pharmaceutical production and formulation research and development facility in Research Triangle Park, NC, and in the field. Between 1998 and 2003, Eisai Inc. moved up rapidly in the rankings (based on revenues) of U.S. pharmaceutical companies from No. 44 to No. 20.

About Harris InteractiveŽ

Harris Interactive Inc. harrisinteractive, the 15th largest and fastest-growing market research firm in the world, is a Rochester, N.Y.-based global research company that blends premier strategic consulting with innovative and efficient methods of investigation, analysis and application. Known for The Harris PollŽ and for pioneering Internet-based research methods, Harris Interactive conducts proprietary and public research to help its clients achieve clear, material and enduring results.

Harris Interactive combines its intellectual capital, databases and technology to advance market leadership through U.S. offices and wholly owned subsidiaries: London-based HI Europe (www.hieurope), Paris-based Novartis (www.Novartis), Tokyo-based Harris Interactive Japan, through newly acquired Wirthlin Worldwide (wirthlinworldwide), a Reston, Virgina-based research and consultancy firm ranked 25th largest in the world, and through an independent global network of affiliate market research companies. EOE M/F/D/V.

View drug information on Zonegran.

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