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What condition does Lamotrigine treat?

Lamotrigine is an oral anticonvulsant medicine used to prevent and control seizures. Seizures are symptoms of brain problems. They occur because of sudden or abnormal electrical activity in the brain. This medication is usually used along with other medications for seizures.

This prescription is also recommended for use in adults to help prevent the extreme mood swings of bipolar disorder. Bipolar disorder is known as manic-depressive disorder. It is a brain illness that causes unusual shifts in activity levels, mood, and energy.

Lamotrigine is an AED of the phenyltriazine class. This is approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

How does Lamotrigine work?

For people with seizures, Lamotrigine works by reducing the release of a substance in your brain known as glutamate. This action prevents the neurons in your brain from becoming too active. As a result, you may have fewer episodes of seizures.

For people with bipolar disorder, this medication may affect certain receptors in your brain. It may help to control your mood. Lamotrigine could lessen the number of mood episodes you have.

What is the recommended dosage for Lamotrigine?

Before taking this medicine, tell your doctor if you ever had:

  • Liver or kidney disease
  • Rash or allergic reaction after taking another seizure medication
  • Meningitis or the inflammation of the tissue that covers the brain and spinal cord

This medication is to be taken by mouth with a full glass of water. Usually, this is taken with or without a meal or snack or as directed by your doctor. Swallow the medicine as a whole with a glass of water.   

The dosage is based on your medical condition and response to it. You must take each dose exactly as it is prescribed. Remember to take it at the same time each day.

Do not stop taking this medicine without consulting your doctor. Several conditions may become worse when the medication is suddenly stopped. Your dosage may need to be slowly decreased. Also, if you have stopped taking this medicine, do not restart the treatment without consulting your doctor.

What are the side effects of Lamotrigine?

  • Sleepiness
  • Dizziness
  • Drowsiness
  • Tired feeling
  • Headache
  • Loss of coordination
  • Blurred or double vision
  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Sore throat
  • Stomach pain or upset stomach
  • Sleep problems
  • Back pain
  • Runny nose
  • Changes in menstrual periods

What are the precautions in taking Lamotrigine?

  • This drug may blur your vision, make you dizzy or drowsy. Do not use machinery, drive, or do anything that needs clear vision or alertness until you can do it safely.
  • Limit alcoholic beverages. Alcohol can make you more dizzy or drowsy.
  • If you are a breastfeeding or pregnant woman, consult your doctor first.
  • Let your doctor know if you have any allergies or current medications.
  • Older adults may be more sensitive to certain side effects of this medication, especially loss of coordination, dizziness, or fainting. These side effects could increase the risk of falling. This medicine should be used with caution.
  • Keep this away from the reach of children.