New Epilepsy Med Briviact In Pharmacies Soon

Roni Shye
Roni Shye, PharmD BCGP BCACP, is a licensed pharmacist in the states of Florida, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.
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Briviact (brivaracetam) is a newly approved drug meant to be used along with other epilepsy treatments, for a specific type of seizure.

What exactly does Briviact treat?

Epilepsy is a disorder of the brain that causes reoccurring episodes of abnormal brain activity—often referred to as a seizure. Seizures can actually feel and look very different for each person, and fall into two major groups: partial and general.

Briviact is specifically intended to treat partial-onset seizures (not the sterotypical full-body convulsions). Partial seizures are also broken down into a few types, including: motor (affects movement), sensory (affects your senses like smell or taste), autonomic (affects part of your nervous system), or psychic (affects how you think or feel).

Is there anything unique about Briviact?

Not really. Briviact is similar to other medications out there already used to treat partial-onset seizures, like Keppra (levitiracetam).

Briviact is already in pharmacies in the UK and Germany.

How does Briviact work?

It’s actually not exactly known how Briviact works to control seizures—but studies have shown that it has anticonvulsant effects.

How should Briviact be taken?
Briviact will come as a tablet in 10 mg, 25 mg, 50 mg, 75 mg, and 100 mg strengths, as a 10 mg/mL oral solution, and as a 50 mg/5 mL single-dose injection.

The recommended starting dose of Briviact tablets is 50 mg twice daily with or without food, but your long-term dose will be individualized by your doctor, based on how well you tolerate it and how well it works. The amount you take may need to be adjusted up or down if you continue to have seizures or see any negative side effects.

The tablet should be swallowed whole with liquid. Tablet should not be crushed or chewed.

What are the side effects of Briviact?

The most common side effects associated with Briviact are drowsiness/sedation, dizziness, fatigue, nausea, and vomiting.

When will Briviact be available?
Briviact is still under review by the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA), since it will be considered a controlled substance. Once it’s decided what kind of restrictions Briviact will need, it should be available in pharmacies shortly.

Want more information?

See the press announcement from the manufacturer UCB here.

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