Research Reports - Amantadine for patients with severe traumatic brain injury

Neurologist. 2015 Jan;19(2):61-4

Spritzer SD(1), Kinney CL, Condie J, Wellik KE, Hoffman-Snyder CR, Wingerchuk DM, Demaerschalk BM

BACKGROUND: Research into traumatic brain injury (TBI) has increased
significantly. Diagnostic testing and therapeutics for patients with severe TBI
are 2 areas on which there is increasing focus. Amantadine hydrochloride is one
treatment considered to have potential therapeutic value in this patient
population.
OBJECTIVE: The objective was addressed through the development of a structured
critically appraised topic. This included a clinical scenario, structured
question, literature search strategy, critical appraisal, results, evidence
summary, commentary, and bottom-line conclusions. Participants included
consultant and resident neurologists, a medical librarian, clinical
epidemiologists, and content experts in the disciplines of neurocritical care and
physical medicine and rehabilitation.
RESULTS: A multicenter, placebo-controlled, double-blind, randomized controlled
trial was selected for review. The trial compared the rate of recovery, as
determined by the overall Disability Rating Scale score, in a total of 184
patients with severe TBI. Patients were randomized to either receive amantadine
(87) or visually identical placebo (97) over the 4-week study interval. The rate
of recovery, as measured by the Disability Rating Scale, was found to be greater
in the treatment arm as compared with the placebo arm (difference in slope -0.24
points/wk, P=0.007) over the 4-week treatment interval.
CONCLUSIONS: The results from this study demonstrated that amantadine
hydrochloride accelerates recovery in patients with severe TBI.

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