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It is not known exactly how levetiracetam prevents seizures.
Levetiracetam may be used to help control
partial seizures in adults.
Levetiracetam may also be used alone or in combination with other
epilepsy drugs to treat seizures that affect the entire brain (generalized) in
adults. Or it may be used alone or in combination with other epilepsy medicines
in children who have
Lennox-Gastaut syndrome or absence seizures.
Levetiracetam may help control seizures in children who have Lennox-Gastaut syndrome and absence seizures.1
Levetiracetam, when taken alone, may also work to control partial and generalized seizures.1
Levetiracetam usually causes only mild side effects. The most
common ones are:
Unlike many of the antiepileptic medicines, levetiracetam is not
likely to cause an adverse reaction when used at the same time as other
In rare cases, levetiracetam may cause a serious skin rash. Contact your doctor if you develop a rash while taking
FDA Advisory. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has
issued an advisory on antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) and the risk of suicide. Talk
to your doctor about these possible side effects and the warning signs of suicide in adults and in children and teens.
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
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.
Drugs for epilepsy (2008). Treatment Guidelines From The Medical Letter, 6(70): 37–46.
August 28, 2013
John Pope, MD - Pediatrics
& Steven C. Schachter, MD - Neurology
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