Is Therapeutic Drug Monitoring of Lacosamide Needed in Patients with Seizures and Epilepsy?

  • Lynnea Schultz
  • Sherif Hanafy MahmoudEmail author
Review Article


Lacosamide is an antiepileptic drug (AED) that has linear pharmacokinetics, predictable blood concentrations, and few drug interactions, setting it apart from other AEDs that require vigorous therapeutic drug monitoring (TDM) such as phenytoin and carbamazepine. However, there have been reports of altered lacosamide pharmacokinetics in some populations. The purpose of this review is to determine whether lacosamide pharmacokinetics are altered in certain patient populations, suggesting the need for TDM. A literature search of Medline, Scopus, Embase, and Cochrane trials was conducted on January 3, 2019 (and then updated on September 2, 2019) to search for articles relevant to the TDM or pharmacokinetics of lacosamide. A total of 56 relevant articles were found and included in this review. Dose of lacosamide is linearly correlated with plasma concentrations and efficacy. However, currently there is no well-established reference range. Overall, the recommended reference ranges varied from 2.2 to 20 mg/L. Lacosamide has very few clinically relevant drug–drug interactions; however, there seems to be a significant drug interaction between lacosamide and enzyme-inducer AEDs. Based on available literature, it appears that lacosamide pharmacokinetics may be altered in severe renal dysfunction, in patients on dialysis and with extremes of age. More evidence is currently needed on lacosamide pharmacokinetics in pregnancy and critical illness. While it is not practical to utilize TDM for all patients, TDM may be useful in patients taking enzyme-inducer AEDs, in patients with decreased renal function or on dialysis, and older adults.



Janice Kung, Librarian at John W. Scott Library, for assisting with the keywords selection and search strategy.

Author Contributions

SHM had the idea of the article. LS performed the literature search and data abstraction and summarization. Both authors confirmed data collected and search and wrote the manuscript.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

Authors have no conflicts of interest to declare.


There is no funding associated with this work.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, 3-142H Katz Group Centre for Pharmacy and Health ResearchUniversity of AlbertaEdmontonCanada

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