The Consumer Justice Foundation Alerts Public to Study Revealing Mortality Rates for People Using Valproic Acid to Treat Behavioral Symptoms of Dementia

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The Consumer Justice Foundation, a for-profit corporation whose Web site URL can be found at http://www.depakotebirthinjury.com and which is staffed by professional consumer advocates whose mission is to alert the public of the potential dangers of prescription medications, hereby alerts the public of the results of a study that revealed the mortality rates of people who had used valproic acid to treat the behavioral symptoms of dementia. Valproic acid is the active ingredient in Depakote.

Although valproic acid and its derivatives have been touted for behavioral stabilization and even potential neuroprotection, the evidence is lacking for such efficacy.

The Consumer Justice Foundation, a for-profit corporation whose team of professional consumer advocates are dedicated to providing free online informational resources regarding the dangers of certain prescription medications, hereby alerts the public of the results of a study that reviewed the mortality rates of patients who used different medications to treat the behavioral symptoms of dementia. These medications included valproic acid, which is the active ingredient in Depakote.

Specifically, this study, which is known as Risk of Mortality Among Individual Antipsychotics in Patients With Dementia, was published in the January issue of The American Journal of Psychiatry, reviewed the relative mortality rates of patients who had experienced behavioral problems because of diagnoses of dementia. This was a retrospective cohort study using national data from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (fiscal years 1999–2008) for dementia patients age 65 and older who began outpatient treatment with an antipsychotic (risperidone, olanzapine, quetiapine, or haloperidol) or valproic acid and its derivatives (as a nonantipsychotic comparison).

The results of this study revealed that the six-month mortality rate for those who used valproic acid was 9.8 percent, which was higher than quetiapine but lower than haloperidol, olanzapine and risperidone. Traditionally, Depakote has been used to treat such medical conditions as the symptoms of migraine headaches and epilepsy. The study stated that, “although valproic acid and its derivatives have been touted for behavioral stabilization and even potential neuroprotection, the evidence is lacking for such efficacy."

About the Consumer Justice Foundation

The Consumer Justice Foundation, whose Web site is located at http://www.consumerjusticefoundation.com, is a public resource that's been built and maintained by a group of concerned professionals who want to provide general information for consumers regarding the potential dangers involved with the use of Depakote while pregnant. This resource is not to be considered as medical or legal advice, which should only be dispensed by a licensed medical doctor or a Depakote lawyer.

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Faith Anderson
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