GlaxoSmithKline has announced that the FDAhas approved Lamictal(R)XR(TM) (lamotrigine) Extended-ReleaseTablets as once-a-day add-on therapy for epilepsy patients 13 years of age orolder with partial onset seizures. Lamictal XR reduced seizures in patientswho were inadequately controlled on current therapy. Lamictal XR reduced the frequency of partial seizures during a 19-weekstudy. More patients who took Lamictal XR had a significant reduction inseizure frequency compared with placebo. These results were statisticallysignificant. Patients enrolled in the study were inadequately controlled onone or two antiepileptic drugs. In fact, half of these patients wereinadequately controlled on two antiepileptic drugs. “Many patients require multiple doses of one or more medications tocontrol their epilepsy, which makes taking their medicines even morechallenging,” said Dean Naritoku, M.D., Professor and Chairman of Neurology,University of South Alabama, Mobile, AL. “Lamictal XR is an importantonce-daily advance for patients with epilepsy who still experience seizureswhile taking their current therapy.” Lamictal XR is approved as add-on therapy for adult and adolescentpatients who experience partial seizures with or without secondarygeneralization. Partial seizures, which are limited to one part of the brain,are the most common type of seizure experienced by people with epilepsy.Partial seizures may sometimes spread to affect the entire brain, anoccurrence classified as secondary generalization. The safety andeffectiveness of Lamictal XR have not been established in patients under theage of 13. Patients with partial seizures currently taking immediate-release Lamictaltwice-daily can be converted directly to once-a-day Lamictal XR using the sametotal daily dose. Lamictal XR will be available in pharmacies this summer.