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Pronounced: tri-LEP-tal
Generic name: Oxcarbazepine

Why is this drug prescribed: Trileptal helps reduce the frequency of partial epileptic seizures, a form of epilepsy in which neural disturbances are limited to a specific region of the brain and the victim remains conscious throughout the attack. Trileptal may be prescribed by itself to treat the problem in adults. It can also be used in combination with other seizure medications in adults and in children as young as four years old.

Most important fact about this drug: Trileptal can cause drowsiness, dizziness, and loss of coordination, which could impair your ability to drive a vehicle or operate dangerous machinery. Do not attempt hazardous activities until you know how the drug affects you.

How should you take this medication: Take Trileptal exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Stopping Trileptal suddenly could cause an increase in the frequency of your seizures. Trileptal may be taken with or without food. Trileptal is available in tablets and an oral suspension, which can be used interchangeably. To administer a dose of the oral suspension, proceed as follows: 1. Shake the bottle well and remove the cap. 2. Push the plunger all the way down in the dosing syringe provided with the bottle. 3. With the bottle upright, push the syringe firmly into the plastic adapter on the neck of the bottle. 4. With the syringe in place, turn the bottle upside down. 5. Slowly pull the plunger out until a small amount of medicine enters the syringe. Push the plunger back in far enough to force out any large air bubbles trapped in the syringe. 6. Slowly pull the plunger out until the top edge of the black ring is level with the marker for the prescribed dose. 7. Turn the bottle upright and twist the syringe free from the plastic adapter. 8. Push the plunger to empty the syringe. The medicine can be dropped directly into the mouth or into a small glass of water. If using water, stir the medicine, then drink the entire glass. 9. Rinse the syringe with warm water and allow it to dry. Replace the cap on the bottle. --If you miss a dose... Take it as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the one you missed and go back to your regular schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once. If you miss more than one dose in a day, check with your doctor. --Storage instructions... Store in a tightly closed container at room temperature.

What side effects may occur: Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, inform your doctor as soon as possible. Only your doctor can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking Trileptal. More common side effects may include: Abdominal pain, abnormal gait, anxiety, back pain, bruising, chest infection, confusion, constipation, convulsions, cough, diarrhea, dizziness, double vision, emotional instability, falling down, fatigue, headache, involuntary eye movement, loss of appetite, long-term memory loss, muscle incoordination, nausea, nervousness, nosebleed, pain, poor coordination, rash, runny nose, sinus inflammation, sleepiness, sleeplessness, sore throat, stomach upset, sweating, taste disorder, tremor, upper respiratory infection, urinary tract infection, vertigo, viral infection, vision disorder, vomiting, weakness Less common side effects may include: Abnormal feeling, abnormal thinking, acne, agitation, allergy, bronchitis, chest pain, decreased sensitivity, dry mouth, earache, ear infection, fever, fluid retention, frequent urination, head injury, hot flushes, impaired concentration, increased sweating, infection, involuntary muscle contraction, low blood pressure, movement disturbances, muscle pain or weakness, pneumonia, poor eye coordination, rectal bleeding, red or purple spots on the skin, sore throat, speech disorder, sprains and strains, stomach inflammation, swollen legs, thirst, toothache, vaginal inflammation, weight increase

Why should this drug not be prescribed: If Trileptal gives you an allergic reaction, you won't be able to use it.

Special warnings about this medication: A significant number (25 to 30 percent) of people who are sensitive to carbamazepine (Tegretol) also experience sensitivity to Trileptal. If you've had a problem with Tegretol, make sure the doctor is aware of it. Trileptal is prescribed under such circumstances only if there's no better alternative. Trileptal can lead to a loss of sodium from the blood, resulting in a serious medical condition which, left untreated, could lead to convulsions, coma, and death. Your doctor should carefully monitor your blood sodium levels during treatment with Trileptal. Alert the doctor immediately if you develop warning signs such as nausea, headache, sluggishness, confusion, loss of feeling, or an increase in the frequency or severity of seizures. If you have kidney disease, your doctor will prescribe a lower dosage of Trileptal. Be sure your doctor knows your medical history before you start therapy.

Possible food and drug interactions when taking this medication: Alcohol can intensify the sedative effects of Trileptal. Avoid alcohol while taking this drug. If Trileptal is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your doctor before combining Trileptal with the following: Calcium channel blockers such as verapamil (Calan) or felodipine (Plendil) Carbamazepine (Tegretol) Phenobarbital Phenytoin (Dilantin) Oral contraceptives Valproic acid (Depakene)

Special information if you are pregnant or breastfeeding: Although it's not known for sure, there is good reason to believe that Trileptal can cause birth defects. If you are pregnant or are planning to become pregnant, tell your doctor immediately. Trileptal should be used during pregnancy only if the potential benefits justify the risk. Trileptal appears in breast milk and could cause serious side effects in a nursing infant. Check with your doctor. You'll probably need to make a choice between breast feeding and continuing your Trileptal therapy.

Recommended dosage: ADULTS: Trileptal taken alone The usual starting dose is 300 milligrams twice daily. Your doctor may gradually increase the dose to 600 milligrams twice daily. In people with kidney disorders, the starting dose is 150 milligrams twice daily. When changing from another antiepileptic medication to Trileptal The usual starting dose is 300 milligrams twice daily. Your doctor will gradually increase the dose over a period of 2 to 4 weeks, while reducing the other medication over a period of 3 to 6 weeks. The final dosage of Trileptal is typically 1,200 milligrams twice daily. Trileptal combined with another antiepileptic medication The usual starting dose is 300 milligrams twice daily. Your doctor may increase the dose to 600 milligrams twice daily. CHILDREN: Trileptal combined with another antiepileptic medication For children 4 to 16 years old, dosage is determined by weight. After a 2-week buildup, the dosage typically ranges from 450 to 900 milligrams taken twice daily.

Overdosage: There is little information on Trileptal overdose. However, any medication taken in excess can have serious consequences. If you suspect an overdose, seek medical treatment immediately.

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