Carbamazepine is a prescription medicine recommended by most doctors used to prevent and treat certain types of seizures. It is also given for a painful condition of the head, face, and neck known as trigeminal neuralgia. Tegrital can also be given to those with diabetic neuropathy. This is an FDA-approved medication.
Carbamazepine is known as an anticonvulsant or antiepileptic drug works by lessening the spread of seizure activity in the brain. This drug also restores the normal balance of nerve activity. The effect of the medicine is quite slow and does lead to some side effects. It may take about a couple of weeks or more for your condition to improve.
A seizure occurs if there is a sudden electrical disturbance in the brain. There are various types of this condition that range in severity. Seizure types vary by where and how they begin in the brain. Most of the seizure lasts from 30 seconds to 2 minutes. If it lasts for 5 minutes, a medical emergency is needed. Most cases of this condition can be controlled with medication.
When and How to Use Carbamazepine
· Always take this medicine exactly as your doctor has told you.
· Your doctor is likely to start treatment with a low dose and slowly increase it to suit your own needs.
· Swallow the tablet as a whole with a glass of water.
· Do not chew or crush the tablet.
· Take the forgotten dose as soon as you remember except if it is almost time for your next dose. Do not double the dose to make up for a forgotten dose
· You may suffer unpleasant side effects if you stop taking Carbamazepine suddenly. Always ask your doctor first before stopping the treatment.
Recommended doses are as follows:
· Children and adolescents: The recommended daily dose for children between 5 and 10 years old is 400 mg to 600 mg of Carbamazepine, divided up throughout the day. In children, over 10 years old may be given a total daily dose of between 600 mg and 1000 mg of Tegrital to be divided throughout the day.
· Adults: The recommended starting dose is 100 mg to 200 mg of Carbamazepine once or twice each day. Your doctor will slowly increase this dose to control your fits until the best response is obtained. Oftentimes, 800 to 1200 mg each day is given in divided doses, although higher doses may be needed.
Possible Side Effects of Carbamazepine
The side effects of this drug mostly don’t require any medical attention and it will just go away once your body gets used to the medicine. If you’re worried about them, you can consult your doctor. Some of the possible side effects are:
· Balance disorder
· Blurred vision
· Slurred speech
· Dryness in mouth
What To Know Before Taking Carbamazepine
· This not to be taken if you have a history of bone marrow.
· If in the past 14 days you had an MAO inhibitor, do not use Carbamazepine.
· Carbamazepine might cause a severe or life-threatening skin rash. Your doctor may recommend a blood test before you start your treatment with this medication to determine your risk.
· Let your doctor know if you ever had depression, glaucoma, heart problems, kidney or liver disease.
· You may have suicidal thoughts while taking this drug. Your doctor must check your progress at regular visits.
· Inform your doctor if you become pregnant while having this medicine as a treatment. This drug might not be recommended for use in pregnant women.
· Your doctor must know if you ever had an allergic reaction to this drug or if you have any other allergies.
Getting the Best Result from Carbamazepine
· Even if you feel well, continue taking this drug until the full prescription is done or you’ve consulted your doctor.
· Do not drink alcohol while you are using this medicine.
· Do not eat grapefruit or drink grapefruit juice.
· Make sure to tell any of your doctors that you are taking this medication. This might affect the results of certain medical tests.
· This medicine may make you drowsy or dizzy. Avoid using machines, driving, or doing anything else that could be dangerous if you are not alert.
· Using Carbamazepine during pregnancy can harm your unborn baby. To keep from getting pregnant, use an effective form of birth control.