To assess seizure frequency and quality of life (QOL) in a group of adults with temporal lobe epilepsy with hippocampal sclerosis (TLE-HS) before and after 10 weeks of systemic acupuncture sessions and compare the results with a group of patients with TLE-HS not undergoing acupuncture.
The Quality of Life in Epilepsy Inventory (QOLIE-31) and the initial and final seizure frequency of 26 adult patients with TLE-HS who underwent acupuncture sessions for 10 consecutive weeks were assessed. The data were compared to those of 26 patients with TLE-HS not submitted to acupuncture, with p < 0.05.
There was a clinically significant effect in reducing the mean number of seizures per month in the follow-up period of patients submitted or not to acupuncture (no intervention group and intervention group, effect size: -0.94 and -1.01, respectively). In the last four weeks of follow-up, there was a significant difference between the no intervention and intervention groups (0.5 [0-2] and 0 [0-4]; p = 0.018). When using minimally important change (MIC) threshold data for the QOLIE-31 between the final and initial scores, with the Cantril Ladder Scale as anchoring, it was observed that, in the intervention group, large clinically significant effects were seen for all dimensions, except for cognitive function, medication effect, and social function, which presented medium effects. In the follow-up, the variation of the QOLIE-31 scores was positive for both groups; however, it was higher in all dimensions in the intervention group, indicating a better QOL.
There was a reduction in the mean number of seizures per month in all patients during the follow-up period. Acupuncture significantly reduced the number of seizures in the intervention group in the final phase of the study. QOL improvements occurred in all patients, however, more significantly in the intervention group.

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