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Generic Tegretol (carbamazepine) is an anticonvulsant. It works by decreasing nerve impulses that cause seizures and pain. Tegretol is used to treat seizures and nerve pain such as trigeminal neuralgia and diabetic neuropathy. Carbamazepine is also used to treat bipolar disorder.
How to take
Take Generic Tegretol 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. Your doctor may occasionally change your dose to make sure you get the best results.
Do not crush, chew, break, or open a Generic Tegretol extended-release tablet. Swallow the tablet whole. Breaking the tablet would cause too much of the drug to be released at one time.
Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction to Generic Tegretol: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.
Report any new or worsening symptoms to your doctor, such as: sudden mood or behavior changes, depression, anxiety, insomnia, or if you feel agitated, hostile, restless, irritable, or have thoughts about suicide or hurting yourself.
Call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:
- fever, tired feeling, weakness, confusion, pale skin, feeling light-headed or short of breath;
- feeling like you might pass out;
- easy bruising, unusual bleeding (nose, mouth, vagina, or rectum), purple or red pinpoint spots under your skin;
- slow, fast, or pounding heartbeats;
- nausea, upper stomach pain, itching, loss of appetite, dark urine, clay-colored stools, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes);
- urinating less than usual;
- confusion, agitation, vision problems, hallucinations;
- swelling, rapid weight gain; or
- severe skin reaction -- fever, sore throat, swelling in your face or tongue, burning in your eyes, skin pain, followed by a red or purple skin rash that spreads (especially in the face or upper body) and causes blistering and peeling.
This medication may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be alert.
Drinking alcohol can increase some of the side effects of Tegretol, and can also increase your risk of seizures.
Avoid exposure to sunlight or tanning beds. Tegretol can make you sunburn more easily. Wear protective clothing and use sunscreen (SPF 30 or higher) when you are outdoors.
Grapefruit and grapefruit juice may interact with Tegretol and lead to unwanted side effects. Discuss the use of grapefruit products with your doctor.
Many drugs can interact with carbamazine, and not all are included in this medication guide. Tell your doctor about all medications you use, especially:
- theophylline (Aquaphyllin, Asmalix, Elixophyllin, Theolair, Theosol);
- birth control pills or hormone replacement therapy;
- an antibiotic, or drugs to treat tuberculosis;
- antifungal medication such as fluconazole (Diflucan) or ketoconazole (Nizoral);
- a blood thinner such as warfarin (Coumadin, Jantoven);
- cancer medicines;
- heart or blood pressure medication;
- HIV or AIDS medications;
- medication to treat depression or mental illness, such as lithium (Eskalith, Lithobid);
- medicines to prevent organ transplant rejection;
- other seizure medications, such as valproic acid (Depakene, Stavzor);
- steroid medication; or
- thyroid replacement medication.
This list is not complete and there are many other drugs that can interact with Generic Tegretol.
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 Generic Tegretol at room temperature. Keep the container tightly closed. Protect the tablets from light and moisture. Keep away from children and pets.
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