What should I watch for?
Visit your doctor or health care professional for regular checks on your progress. It may be 2 to 3 weeks before you see the full effects of this medicine. Do not suddenly stop taking this medicine, you may increase the risk of seizures. Your doctor or health care professional may want to gradually reduce the dose. Wear a medical identification bracelet or chain to say you have epilepsy, and carry a card that lists all your medications.
You may get drowsy or dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs mental alertness until you know how this medicine affects you. Do not stand or sit up quickly, especially if you are an older patient. This reduces the risk of dizzy or fainting spells. Alcohol may interfere with the effect of this medicine. Avoid alcoholic drinks.
The use of this medicine may increase the chance of suicidal thoughts or actions. Pay special attention to how you are responding while on this medicine. Any worsening of mood, or thoughts of suicide or dying should be reported to your health care professional right away.
Women who become pregnant while using this medicine may enroll in the North American Antiepileptic Drug Pregnancy Registry by calling 1-888-233-2334. This registry collects information about the safety of antiepileptic drug use during pregnancy.
This medicine may cause a decrease in vitamin D and folic acid. You should make sure that you get enough vitamins while you are taking this medicine. Discuss the foods you eat and the vitamins you take with your health care professional.
Common and Rare Side Effects
Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.
Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:
Shakiness and unsteady walk
unsteadiness, trembling, or other problems with muscle control or coordination
Unusual excitement or restlessness (especially in children and in the elderly)
cough or hoarseness
fever with or without chills
general feeling of tiredness or weakness
lower back or side pain
painful or difficult urination
shortness of breath
sores, ulcers, or white spots on the lips or in the mouth
unusual bleeding or bruising
unusual tiredness or weakness
Get emergency help immediately if any of the following symptoms of overdose occur:
Symptoms of overdose
continuous, uncontrolled rolling eye movements
Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:
Clumsiness or unsteadiness
dizziness or lightheadedness
feeling of constant movement of self or surroundings
sensation of spinning
Decreased sexual ability
loss of appetite
mood or mental changes
nausea or vomiting
Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.
Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.