OBJECTIVE The aim of this hospital-based study is to get an insight into the efficacy and tolerability of antiepileptic drugs (AED) in Omani epileptic patients. PATIENTS AND METHODS All Omani patients (aged 14 years and above) suffering from epileptic seizures for at least 2 years and followed-up by board-certified neurologists in Sultan Qaboos University Hospital (SQUH) were evaluated. The treatment retention rate since first visit at SQUH and over the last 2 years was used as primary efficacy measure of AED therapy. Change in seizure-frequency and side effect profiles were also assessed. RESULTS In this population of 203 confirmed epileptic patients, generalized tonic-clonic (40%) and partial seizures (39%) were most commonly observed, idiopathic/cryptogenic origin (81%) being the most frequent encountered origin. Sixty one percent of the patients were controlled with an AED in monotherapy and overall 34% of patients could be successfully maintained on monotherapy during the whole follow-up period at SQUH (median 6 years). The treatment retention rates for carbamazepine (CBZ) at a daily dose of 400-600 mg, sodium valproate (VPA) at a daily dose of 500-1000 mg, and phenytoin (PHT) at a daily dose of 300 mg, in monotherapy over the total follow-up period was 51, 50, and 21%, respectively. In contrast, over the last 2 years these rates were highest for VPA (91%) followed by CBZ (83%) and PHT (73%). Adverse drug reactions were recorded in 67% of patients, and were most commonly encountered with VPA. CONCLUSIONS Despite a higher adverse effect profile for VPA, long-term treatment with CBZ and VPA appeared to be equally effective in terms of treatment retention rates and seizure control.