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Felbamate comes in liquid
and tablet forms.
It is not known exactly how felbamate
Felbamate may be used to prevent
partial seizures in adults and children. But it
has some very serious side effects. It is used with caution in younger children
since they may not be able to communicate symptoms of potentially serious side
effects, such as chills or stomach pain.
Felbamate controls partial seizures
in adults very well. In children with
Lennox-Gastaut syndrome, felbamate may reduce seizure
frequency but not make the child seizure-free.1 But
it has made some children more alert and improved their quality of life.
Common side effects of felbamate
Most of these problems tend to go away after the body
adjusts to the drug. Weight loss and insomnia are common long-term problems,
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
you and your doctor figure out the medicine program that works best for you, make sure you 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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