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Lamotrigine is an anti-epileptic medication, also called an anticonvulsant. Lamotrigine is used either alone or in combination with other medications to treat epileptic seizures in adults and children. Lamotrigine is also used to delay mood episodes in adults with bipolar disorder (manic depression).
The immediate-release form of Lamotrigine (Lamictal, Lamictal ODT) can be used in children as young as 2 years old when it is given as part of a combination of seizure medications.
How to take
Take exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label. Do not crush, chew, or break a regular lamotrigine tablet. Swallow it whole.
Call your doctor at once if you have any of these other serious side effects:
- the first sign of any skin rash, no matter how mild;
- fever, swollen glands, body aches, flu symptoms, headache, neck stiffness, increased sensitivity to light;
- easy bruising or bleeding, severe tingling, numbness, pain, muscle weakness;
- upper stomach pain, loss of appetite, dark urine, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes);
- chest pain, irregular heart rhythm, feeling short of breath;
- confusion, nausea and vomiting, swelling, rapid weight gain, urinating less than usual or not at all;
- pale skin, feeling light-headed or short of breath, rapid heart rate, trouble concentrating; or
- increased seizures or worsening of your bipolar disorder.
Less serious side effects may include:
- tremors, dizziness, tired feeling;
- blurred vision, double vision;
- loss of coordination;
- dry mouth, mild nausea, stomach pain, upset stomach;
- changes in your menstrual periods;
- back pain;
- sleep problems (insomnia); or
- runny nose, sore throat.
This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur.
Tell your doctor if you have: other illnesses, heart problems, liver problems, kidney problems, allergies (especially drug allergies).
Sunscreen and/or protective clothing is recommended to protect against possible severe rash triggered by sunlight. Use caution operating machinery or engaging in activities requiring alertness.
Limit alcohol intake while taking this drug.
This medication should be used only if clearly needed during pregnancy. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor. This drug is excreted into breast milk. Due to possible risks to nursing infants, breast-feeding while using this drug is not recommended. Consult your doctor.
Tell your doctor about all other medicines you use, especially:
- hormonal forms of birth control (pills, injections, implants, or skin patches);
- carbamazepine (Carbatrol, Equetro, Tegretol);
- divalproex (Depakote);
- oxcarbazepine (Trileptal);
- phenobarbital (Solfoton);
- primidone (Mysoline);
- phenytoin (Dilantin);
- rifampin (Rifadin, Rifater, Rifamate, Rimactane); or
- valproic acid (Depakene, Stavzor).
This list is not complete and other drugs may interact with Lamotrigine.
If you miss a dose, take as soon as remembered; do not take if it is almost time for the next dose, instead, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not "double-up" the dose to catch up.
Store at room temperature between 59 and 86 degrees F (between 15 and 30 degrees C) away from moisture and sunlight. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep away from children and pets.
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