Vagus Nerve Stimulation for Refractory Epilepsy

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  • This report has been produced in response to a request from Alberta Health and Wellness for an update on the use of vagus nerve stimulation (VNS) for refractory epilepsy. The intent was to inform health policy makers, medical practitioners, and the public on the current status of the use of VNS for refractory epilepsy in both adults and children and on its use and coverage in Canada. This review is confined to the use of VNS therapy for refractory epilepsy. This report consists of two main sections. The first section summarizes the findings of the current review of the published literature that has provided evidence on the long-term safety and efficacy/effectiveness of VNS when used for this indication and on the issues related to its use. The second section presents updated information on the use and coverage of VNS procedure in Canada. This information was obtained by a survey of the provincial/territorial Medical Directors across Health Ministries in Canada conducted to determine the use and provision of VNS therapy in Canada and whether the surgical procedures and devices associated with it were publicly funded/covered. This section also presents information on the commercially available VNS devices and the costs of these devices and of each of their components. HTA 24: Series A

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    Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International