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Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews

Melatonin as add-on treatment for epilepsy

Overview of attention for article published in Cochrane database of systematic reviews, August 2016
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About this Attention Score

  • In the top 25% of all research outputs scored by Altmetric
  • High Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age (89th percentile)
  • Above-average Attention Score compared to outputs of the same age and source (63rd percentile)

Mentioned by

2 blogs
5 tweeters
1 Facebook page
4 Wikipedia pages


22 Dimensions

Readers on

163 Mendeley
Melatonin as add-on treatment for epilepsy
Published in
Cochrane database of systematic reviews, August 2016
DOI 10.1002/14651858.cd006967.pub4
Pubmed ID

Francesco Brigo, Stanley C Igwe, Alessandra Del Felice


This is an updated version of the original Cochrane review published in Issue 6, 2012.Epilepsy is one of the most common chronic neurological disorders. Despite the plethora of antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) currently available, 30% of people continue having seizures. This group of people requires a more aggressive treatment, since monotherapy, the first choice scheme, fails to control seizures. Nevertheless, polytherapy often results in a number of unwanted effects, including neurological disturbances (somnolence, ataxia, dizziness), psychiatric and behavioural symptoms, and metabolic alteration (osteoporosis, inducement or inhibition of hepatic enzymes, etc.). The need for better tolerated AEDs is even more urgent in this group of people. Reports have suggested an antiepileptic role of melatonin with a good safety profile. To assess the efficacy and tolerability of melatonin as add-on treatment for epilepsy. For the latest update, we searched the Cochrane Epilepsy Group's Specialized Register (12 January 2016), the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials (CENTRAL) via the Cochrane Register of Studies Online (CRSO, 12 January 2016), and MEDLINE (Ovid, 11 January 2016). We searched the bibliographies of any identified study for further references. We handsearched selected journals and conference proceedings. We applied no language restrictions. In addition, we contacted melatonin manufacturers (i.e. Nathura) and original investigators to identify any unpublished studies. Randomized controlled trials; double, single, or unblinded trials; parallel group or cross-over studies. People with epilepsy regardless of age and gender, including children and adults with disabilities. Administration of melatonin as add-on treatment to any AED(s) compared to add-on placebo or no add-on treatment. Review authors independently selected trials for inclusion according to pre-defined criteria, extracted relevant data, and evaluated the methodological quality of trials. We assessed the following outcomes: at least 50% seizure reduction, seizure freedom, adverse events, and quality of life. We included six publications, with 125 participants (106 aged under 18 years). Two different comparisons were available: melatonin versus placebo and melatonin 5 mg versus melatonin 10 mg. Despite our primary intention, due to insufficient information on outcomes, we were unable to perform any meta-analyses, but summarized data narratively. Four studies were randomized, double-blind, cross-over, placebo-controlled trials and two were randomized, double-blind, parallel, placebo-controlled trials. Only two studies provided the exact number of seizures during the trial compared to the baseline: none of the participants with seizures during the trial had a change in seizure frequency compared with the baseline. Two studies systematically evaluated adverse effects (worsening of headache was reported in a child with migraine under melatonin treatment). Only one study systematically evaluated quality of life, showing no statistically significant improvement in quality of life in the add-on melatonin group. Included studies were of poor methodological quality, and did not systematically evaluate seizure frequency and adverse events, so that it was impossible to summarize data in a meta-analysis. It is not possible to draw any conclusion about the role of melatonin in reducing seizure frequency or improving quality of life in people with epilepsy.

Twitter Demographics

The data shown below were collected from the profiles of 5 tweeters who shared this research output. Click here to find out more about how the information was compiled.

Mendeley readers

The data shown below were compiled from readership statistics for 163 Mendeley readers of this research output. Click here to see the associated Mendeley record.

Geographical breakdown

Country Count As %
Spain 1 <1%
Unknown 162 99%

Demographic breakdown

Readers by professional status Count As %
Student > Master 27 17%
Student > Bachelor 23 14%
Student > Ph. D. Student 18 11%
Researcher 13 8%
Other 10 6%
Other 30 18%
Unknown 42 26%
Readers by discipline Count As %
Medicine and Dentistry 45 28%
Nursing and Health Professions 21 13%
Psychology 13 8%
Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology 5 3%
Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutical Science 5 3%
Other 19 12%
Unknown 55 34%

Attention Score in Context

This research output has an Altmetric Attention Score of 18. This is our high-level measure of the quality and quantity of online attention that it has received. This Attention Score, as well as the ranking and number of research outputs shown below, was calculated when the research output was last mentioned on 11 April 2022.
All research outputs
of 21,546,712 outputs
Outputs from Cochrane database of systematic reviews
of 12,070 outputs
Outputs of similar age
of 280,984 outputs
Outputs of similar age from Cochrane database of systematic reviews
of 159 outputs
Altmetric has tracked 21,546,712 research outputs across all sources so far. Compared to these this one has done particularly well and is in the 92nd percentile: it's in the top 10% of all research outputs ever tracked by Altmetric.
So far Altmetric has tracked 12,070 research outputs from this source. They typically receive a lot more attention than average, with a mean Attention Score of 29.3. This one has gotten more attention than average, scoring higher than 69% of its peers.
Older research outputs will score higher simply because they've had more time to accumulate mentions. To account for age we can compare this Altmetric Attention Score to the 280,984 tracked outputs that were published within six weeks on either side of this one in any source. This one has done well, scoring higher than 89% of its contemporaries.
We're also able to compare this research output to 159 others from the same source and published within six weeks on either side of this one. This one has gotten more attention than average, scoring higher than 63% of its contemporaries.