Tiagabine increases the brain levels of a chemical messenger
(neurotransmitter) called gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), which may prevent
abnormal electrical activity in brain cells.
Tiagabine is used in combination with other antiepileptic medicines
in adults and children older than 12 years to control
When added to treatment with another antiepileptic drug, tiagabine
is sometimes effective in reducing partial seizures in children older than 12
years. It seems to work better in controlling partial seizures in adults,
either alone or when used with another antiepileptic medicine. It is not
helpful in reducing other types of seizures, such as primary
generalized seizures or seizures in children who have
Common side effects of tiagabine include:
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued a warning on
antiepileptic medicines and the risk of suicide and suicidal thoughts. The FDA
does not recommend that people stop using these medicines. Instead, people who
take antiepileptic medicine should be watched closely for
warning signs of suicide. People who take
antiepileptic medicine and who are worried about this side effect should talk
to a doctor.
See Drug Reference for a full list of side effects. (Drug Reference
is not available in all systems.)
It may take time and careful, controlled adjustments by you and
your doctor to find the combination, schedule, and dosing of medicine to best
manage your epilepsy. The goal is to prevent seizures while causing as few
side effects as possible. After you and your doctor figure out the
medicine program that works best for you, make sure to follow your
program exactly as prescribed.
Complete the new medication information form (PDF)(What is a PDF document?) to help you understand this medication.
CitationsJarrar RG, Buchhalter JR (2003). Therapeutics in
pediatric epilepsy, part 1: The new antiepileptic drugs and the ketogenic diet.
Mayo Clinical Procedures, 78(3): 359–370.
August 26, 2011
Susan C. Kim, MD - Pediatrics & Steven C. Schachter, MD - Neurology
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