Original Research

Current norms and practices in using a seizure diary for managing epilepsy: A scoping review

Chika K. Egenasi, Anandan A. Moodley, Wilhelm J. Steinberg, Anthonio O. Adefuye
South African Family Practice | Vol 64, No 1 : Part 4| a5540 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/safp.v64i1.5540 | © 2022 Chika K. Egenasi, Anandan A. Moodley, Wilhelm J. Steinberg, Anthonio O. Adefuye | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 28 March 2022 | Published: 22 September 2022

About the author(s)

Chika K. Egenasi, Department of Family Medicine, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa
Anandan A. Moodley, Department of Neurology, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of KwaZulu-Natal, Durban, South Africa
Wilhelm J. Steinberg, Department of Family Medicine, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa
Anthonio O. Adefuye, Division of Health Sciences Education, Faculty of Health Science, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa

Abstract

Background: Epilepsy is a chronic and debilitating condition affecting people of all ages in many nations. Healthcare practitioners look for effective ways to track patients’ seizures, and a seizure diary is one of the methods used. This scoping review sought to identify current norms and practices for using seizure diaries to manage epilepsy.

Method: A scoping review was performed by screening relevant studies and identifying themes, categories and subcategories.

Results: A total of 1125 articles were identified from the database; 46 full-text articles were assessed for eligibility, of which 23 articles were selected. The majority (48%) of the studies were prospective studies. The majority (65%) of the articles were studies conducted in the United States. The themes identified were types of seizure diaries used in clinical practice, contents and structure of a standardised seizure diary, the use and efficacy of seizure diaries in medicine and challenges relating to using a seizure diary for patient management.

Conclusion: The study revealed that a seizure diary remains a relevant tool in managing epilepsy. The two forms of diaries in use are electronic and paper-based diaries. The high cost of data and the expensive devices required to access electronic diaries make it unsuitable in a resource-limited setting. Despite its disadvantages, imperfections and inadequacies, the paper-based diary is still relevant for managing patients with epilepsy in resource-limited settings.

Contribution: This study reviewed the literature to find the current norms and practices in using seizure diaries. The benefits of the different formats were emphasised.

 


Keywords

seizure diary; epilepsy; paper-based seizure diary; electronic diary; seizure frequency; scoping review; articles; literature

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