Established Status Epilepticus Treatment Trial (ESETT)

Status epilepticus Background/Facts

  • Status Epilepticus (SE) is life-threatening.
  • There are approximately 120,000 – 180,000 episodes of SE each year in the US.
  • About one third of SE patients continue to have a seizure despite receiving adequate doses of medicine (benzodiazepines) to make it stop.
  • SE affects individuals of all ages, from the very young to the elderly.

Status Epilepticus (SE) is a seizure lasting longer than five minutes without stopping or waking up.  A seizure that does not stop despite receiving a the usual medicine, typically a benzodiazepine such as valium or versed is considered to have Established Status Epilepticus, or ESE. Click here to learn more about ESETT, a seizure study that may affect you or someone you know.

ESETT is a research study designed to save and improve the lives of people who experience established status epilepticus. Emergency department care of patients with a long-lasting seizure in the U.S. is not the same everywhere.  Because it is not known which drug best treats this type of seizure, different doctors use different medicines.  This study plans to look at three commonly used medicines given in emergency departments for ESE: phenoytoin, valproic acid, and levetiracetam to learn which treatment is most effective at stopping a seizure quickly and safely.

Normally, researchers get permission before a person can be included in a study.  A person having a seizure will not be able to give consent. Since a seizure that will not stop on its own must be treated quickly, there will not be enough time to locate and talk to the person’s legal representative about the study, so the person will be enrolled in the study without his/her legal representative’s consent.  This is called “Exception from Informed Consent” (EFIC).

If you would like more information about the study or would like to decline participation, please go to our website or contact us by email or phone for a wrist band like the one shown below.

More information about opting out of EMS-related research is here.


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