Generic Name: levetiracetam (LEE-ve-tye-RA-se-tam)
Brand Name: Keppra
Levetiracetam tablets are used for:
Treating partial-onset, myoclonic, or generalized tonic-clonic seizures in patients with epilepsy. It is used in combination with other medicines. It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.
Levetiracetam tablets are an anticonvulsant. Exactly how it works is not known, but it may work by slowing abnormal nerve impulses in the brain.
Do NOT use levetiracetam tablets if:
- you are allergic to any ingredient in levetiracetam tablets
Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.
Before using levetiracetam tablets:
Some medical conditions may interact with levetiracetam tablets. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:
- if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
- if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
- if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
- if you have kidney problems or you are on dialysis
- if you have a history of mental or mood problems (eg, depression), or suicidal thoughts or actions
Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with levetiracetam tablets. However, no specific interactions with levetiracetam tablets are known at this time.
Ask your health care provider if levetiracetam tablets may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.
How to use levetiracetam tablets:
Use levetiracetam tablets as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.
- Levetiracetam tablets comes with an extra patient information sheet called a Medication Guide. Read it carefully. Read it again each time you get levetiracetam tablets refilled.
- Take levetiracetam tablets by mouth with or without food.
- Levetiracetam tablets may be broken in half. Swallow the tablets or half tablets whole. Do not crush or chew before swallowing.
- Levetiracetam tablets works best if it is taken at the same time(s) each day.
- Continue to take levetiracetam tablets even if you feel well. Do not miss any doses.
- If you miss a dose of levetiracetam tablets, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.
Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use levetiracetam tablets.
Important safety information:
- Tell your doctor or dentist that you take levetiracetam tablets before you receive any medical or dental care, emergency care, or surgery.
- Levetiracetam tablets may cause drowsiness or dizziness. These effects may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use levetiracetam tablets with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.
- Do not suddenly stop taking levetiracetam tablets or your other seizure medicines. You may have an increased risk of side effects (eg, seizures). If you need to stop levetiracetam tablets, your doctor will gradually lower your dose.
- Contact your health care provider if your seizures become worse or if you have a new type of seizure.
- Levetiracetam tablets may cause behavior changes and mental or mood problems. Patients who take levetiracetam tablets may also be at increased risk for suicidal thoughts or actions. The risk of suicidal thoughts or actions may be greater in patients who have had suicidal thoughts or actions in the past. Watch patients who take levetiracetam tablets closely. Contact the doctor at once if new, worsened, or sudden symptoms such as depressed mood; anxious, restless, or irritable behavior; panic attacks; or any unusual changes in mood or behavior occur. Contact the doctor right away if any signs of suicidal thoughts or actions occur.
- Serious skin reactions (Stevens-Johnson syndrome/toxic epidermal necrolysis) have been reported with the use of levetiracetam tablets. They can cause serious health problems that may not go away, and sometimes death. Most of the serious skin reactions developed within the first 14 to 17 days after starting treatment. However, skin reactions have also been reported to occur at least 4 months after starting treatment. Contact your doctor at once if you develop 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. Treatment with levetiracetam tablets should be stopped if rash occurs, unless it is clearly determined that the medicine did not cause the rash. Talk with your doctor for more information.
- Lab tests may be performed while you use levetiracetam tablets. These tests may be used to monitor your condition or check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
- Use levetiracetam tablets with caution in the ELDERLY; they may be more sensitive to its effects.
- Children younger than 4 years old will need to have blood pressure checked often. Discuss any questions or concerns with the doctor.
- Caution is advised when using levetiracetam tablets in CHILDREN; they may be more sensitive to its effects, especially weakness and mood or behavior changes.
- PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using levetiracetam tablets while you are pregnant. Levetiracetam tablets's effectiveness may decrease in women who become pregnant. Discuss any questions or concerns with your doctor. Levetiracetam tablets are found in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking levetiracetam tablets.
Possible side effects of levetiracetam tablets:
All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:
Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:
Cough; decreased appetite; diarrhea; dizziness; drowsiness; headache; irritability; nausea; nose or throat irritation; runny or stuffy nose; stomach pain; tiredness; trouble sleeping; vomiting; weakness.
Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); abnormal thoughts; dark urine; decreased coordination; fever, chills, or persistent sore throat; hallucinations; memory loss; new or worsening mental, mood, or behavior changes (eg, aggression, agitation, anger, anxiety, apathy, depression, hostility, irritability, panic attacks, restlessness); new or worsening seizures; red, swollen, blistered or peeling skin; severe or persistent dizziness, drowsiness, or headache; suicidal thoughts or attempts; trouble sleeping; unusual bruising or bleeding; unusual tiredness or weakness; vision changes; yellowing of the skin or eyes.
This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.
If OVERDOSE is suspected:
Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately.Proper storage of levetiracetam tablets:
Store levetiracetam tablets at room temperature, between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep levetiracetam tablets out of the reach of children and away from pets.
- If you have any questions about levetiracetam tablets, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- Levetiracetam tablets are to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
- If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
- Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.
This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take levetiracetam tablets or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about levetiracetam tablets. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to levetiracetam tablets. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your health care provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using levetiracetam tablets.
Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.
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