Medically reviewed by Drugs.com. Last updated on Dec 1, 2020.
- A very bad skin reaction (Stevens-Johnson syndrome/toxic epidermal necrolysis) may happen. It can cause very bad health problems that may not go away, and sometimes death. Get medical help right away if you have signs like red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin (with or without fever); red or irritated eyes; or sores in your mouth, throat, nose, or eyes.
- The chance of a skin reaction is raised in children between 2 and 17 years old. It may also be raised if you take valproic acid or divalproex sodium with Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets), if you start taking Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets) at too high of a dose, or if your dose is raised too fast. Skin reactions have also happened without any of these. Talk with your doctor.
- Most cases of skin reactions have happened within 2 to 8 weeks of starting Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets), but some show up after longer treatment like 6 months. Talk with the doctor.
Uses of Lamictal:
- It is used to help control certain kinds of seizures.
- It is used to treat bipolar problems.
- It may be given to you for other reasons. Talk with the doctor.
What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take Lamictal?
- If you have an allergy to lamotrigine or any other part of Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets).
- If you are allergic to Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets); any part of Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets); or any other drugs, foods, or substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had.
- If you are taking dofetilide.
This is not a list of all drugs or health problems that interact with Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets).
Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets) with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.
What are some things I need to know or do while I take Lamictal?
- Tell all of your health care providers that you take Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets). This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
- Avoid driving and doing other tasks or actions that call for you to be alert until you see how Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets) affects you.
- It may take several weeks to see the full effects.
- Do not stop taking Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets) all of a sudden without calling your doctor. You may have a greater risk of side effects. If you need to stop Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets), you will want to slowly stop it as ordered by your doctor.
- If you stop taking Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets), talk with your doctor. You may need to be restarted at a lower dose and raise the dose slowly.
- Have blood work checked as you have been told by the doctor. Talk with the doctor.
- This medicine may affect certain lab tests. Tell all of your health care providers and lab workers that you take Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets).
- Talk with your doctor before you drink alcohol or use other drugs and natural products that slow your actions.
- A severe and sometimes deadly reaction has happened. Most of the time, this reaction has signs like fever, rash, or swollen glands with problems in body organs like the liver, kidney, blood, heart, muscles and joints, or lungs. If you have questions, talk with the doctor.
- Like other drugs that may be used for seizures, Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets) may rarely raise the risk of suicidal thoughts or actions. The risk may be higher in people who have had suicidal thoughts or actions in the past. Call the doctor right away about any new or worse signs like depression; feeling nervous, restless, or grouchy; panic attacks; or other changes in mood or behavior. Call the doctor right away if any suicidal thoughts or actions occur.
- Use with care in children. Talk with the doctor.
- Some drugs may look the same as Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets) or may have names that sound like Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets). Always check to make sure you have the right product. If you see any change in the way Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets) looks like shape, color, size, or wording, check with your pharmacist.
- Birth control pills and other hormone-based birth control may change how much of Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets) is in your body. Talk to your doctor before you start or stop any hormone-based birth control. The chance of side effects may be raised when taking birth control pills during the week that the pills are not active. Talk with your doctor.
- Birth control pills and other hormone-based birth control may not work as well to prevent pregnancy. Use some other kind of birth control also like a condom when taking Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets).
- Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, plan on getting pregnant, or are breast-feeding. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks to you and the baby.
How is this medicine (Lamictal) best taken?
Use Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets) as ordered by your doctor. Read all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.
- Take with or without food.
- Swallow whole. Do not chew, break, or crush.
- If you have trouble swallowing, talk with your doctor.
- Do not change the dose or stop Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets). This could cause seizures. Talk with your doctor.
- Keep taking Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets) as you have been told by your doctor or other health care provider, even if you feel well.
What do I do if I miss a dose?
- Take a missed dose as soon as you think about it.
- If it is close to the time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your normal time.
- Do not take 2 doses at the same time or extra doses.
What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?
WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:
For all uses of Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets):
- Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing, swallowing, or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
- Signs of infection like fever, chills, very bad sore throat, ear or sinus pain, cough, more sputum or change in color of sputum, pain with passing urine, mouth sores, or wound that will not heal.
- Signs of liver problems like dark urine, feeling tired, not hungry, upset stomach or stomach pain, light-colored stools, throwing up, or yellow skin or eyes.
- Signs of kidney problems like unable to pass urine, change in how much urine is passed, blood in the urine, or a big weight gain.
- Shortness of breath, a big weight gain, or swelling in the arms or legs.
- Swollen gland.
- Very bad muscle pain or weakness.
- Very bad joint pain or swelling.
- Any unexplained bruising or bleeding.
- Feeling very tired or weak.
- Change in eyesight.
- Very bad dizziness or passing out.
- Change in balance.
- Not able to control eye movements.
- Chest pain or pressure.
- Flu-like signs.
- Painful periods.
- Period (menstrual) changes. These include spotting or bleeding between cycles.
- This medicine may raise the chance of a very bad brain problem called aseptic meningitis. Call your doctor right away if you have a headache, fever, chills, very upset stomach or throwing up, stiff neck, rash, bright lights bother your eyes, feeling sleepy, or feeling confused.
- If seizures are worse or not the same after starting Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets).
What are some other side effects of Lamictal?
All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:
- Feeling dizzy, sleepy, tired, or weak.
- Constipation, diarrhea, stomach pain, upset stomach, throwing up, or feeling less hungry.
- Trouble sleeping.
- Nose or throat irritation.
- Weight loss.
- Dry mouth.
- Back pain.
These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.
You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-332-1088. You may also report side effects at https://www.fda.gov/medwatch.
If OVERDOSE is suspected:
If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.
How do I store and/or throw out Lamictal?
- Store at room temperature.
- Protect from light.
- Store in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.
- Keep all drugs in a safe place. Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
- Throw away unused or expired drugs. Do not flush down a toilet or pour down a drain unless you are told to do so. Check with your pharmacist if you have questions about the best way to throw out drugs. There may be drug take-back programs in your area.
Consumer information use
- If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
- Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else's drugs.
- This medicine comes with an extra patient fact sheet called a Medication Guide. Read it with care. Read it again each time Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets) is refilled. If you have any questions about Lamictal (lamotrigine tablets), please talk with the doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.
Frequently asked questions
More about Lamictal (lamotrigine)
- Side Effects
- During Pregnancy or Breastfeeding
- Dosage Information
- Patient Tips
- Drug Images
- Drug Interactions
- Compare Alternatives
- Pricing & Coupons
- En Español
- 665 Reviews
- Generic Availability
- Drug class: triazine anticonvulsants
- Latest FDA Alerts (7)
- Other brands
Related treatment guides
Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.