FDA opens preliminary inquiry into risks of epilepsy drugs
The FDA has begun an inquiry into whether epilepsy drugs may increase the risk of suicidal behavior in some patients, with a focus on those who use them for psychiatric illnesses.
The inquiry was prompted in part by a lawyer's claims against the leading anti-convulsant, Neurontin. The FDA last month asked makers of all epilepsy drugs to re-examine research to see if there was evidence of increased suicide risk.
Robert Temple, the agency's drug policy chief told the Associated Press, "I don't think we have any suspicion yet that these drugs actually do that."
The analysis is the same as what the agency ordered last year for antidepressants amid controversy over their use by children and teenagers.
Ultimately, those drugs were linked to an increase in suicidal thoughts and actions in a small fraction of young patients.