Review decision date: February 2014

Review decision: 

This guideline should not be updated at this time. For further information, please refer to the surveillance review decision

Next review date: 2018

This guideline was previously called the epilepsies: the diagnosis and management of the epilepsies in adults and children in primary and secondary care.

February 2016

In February 2016, we updated this guideline to link to the Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency’s (MHRA) toolkit to ensure female patients are better informed about the risks of taking valproate during pregnancy.

Your responsibility

The recommendations in this guideline represent the view of NICE, arrived at after careful consideration of the evidence available. When exercising their judgement, professionals are expected to take this guideline fully into account, alongside the individual needs, preferences and values of their patients or service users. The application of the recommendations in this guideline is not mandatory and the guideline does not override the responsibility of healthcare professionals to make decisions appropriate to the circumstances of the individual patient, in consultation with the patient and/or their carer or guardian.

Local commissioners and/or providers have a responsibility to enable the guideline to be applied when individual health professionals and their patients or service users wish to use it. They should do so in the context of local and national priorities for funding and developing services, and in light of their duties to have due regard to the need to eliminate unlawful discrimination, to advance equality of opportunity and to reduce health inequalities. Nothing in this guideline should be interpreted in a way that would be inconsistent with compliance with those duties.

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