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Crossover trial of gabapentin and memantine as treatment for acquired nystagmus



We conducted a masked, crossover, therapeutic trial of gabapentin (1,200mg/day) versus memantine (40mg/day) for acquired nystagmus in 10 patients (aged 28–61 years; 7 female; 3 multiple sclerosis [MS]; 6 post-stroke; 1 post-traumatic). Nystagmus was pendular in 6 patients (4 oculopalatal tremor; 2 MS) and jerk upbeat, hemi-seesaw, torsional, or upbeat-diagonal in each of the others. For the group, both drugs reduced median eye speed (p < 0.001), gabapentin by 32.8% and memantine by 27.8%, and improved visual acuity (p < 0.05). Each patient improved with 1 or both drugs. Side effects included unsteadiness with gabapentin and lethargy with memantine. Both drugs should be considered as treatment for acquired forms of nystagmus. ANN NEUROL 2010;67:676–680

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