Epilepsy isnot an illness that can be cured with the medications. Drugs are proven to beeffective in 70% of the patients suffering from this condition and its effectivenessis measured by the control of the epileptic attacks.
When choosingthe right treatment for the patient doctor will take into consideration thetype of epilepsy, side effects that may occur when the specific medications areused, any other illnesses and conditions the patient might have and the acceptabilityof the delivery methods.
One of the mostcommon medications used to treat epilepsy is Tegretol or Carbatrol (containingthe substance called carbamazepine). This is the first choice for patientssuffering from partial, generalized tonic-clonic and mixed epilepsy. Side effectsinclude tiredness, changes of vision, nausea, rash and dizziness.
For absenceseizures, in children, Zarontin is the doctor’s choice. It containsethosuximide and it might induce nausea, vomiting loss of appetite and weightloss.
Felbatol isused in treatment of partial and general epilepsy. It is necessary to controlblood panels and check the liver function when taking this medicine, because itmay affect bone marrow and liver.
Gabitril isthe drug to treat partial and some generalized seizures, combined with othermedicines.
With someother antiepileptic medications Keppra is used in treatment of partialepilepsy. Changes in behavior, fatigue and weakness might be expected as sideeffects of this drug.
For partialand some generalized seizures doctor could also prescribe Lamictal, and some partial epilepsyattacks are treated with Lyrica.
Neurontin contains gabapentin,and it is used in combination with other antiepileptics to treat partial and some generalized seizures. It has few side effects, like tirednessand dizziness and they last just for the first couple of weeks, when starting a medication.
Dilantin (the active substance is phenytoin) is controlingpartial and generalized tonic-clonic epilepsy. The medication can be given intravenously,to control active seizures in the hospital.
Topamax is combined with other epilepsy medications forpartial or generalized tonic-clonic seizures. Side effects includes sleepiness,dizziness, speech problems, nervousness, memory problems, visions problems,weight loss.
Trileptal is the medicationthat treats partial seizures.
Depakene and Depakote contain valproate or valproic acid andare treatment for partial, absence, and generalized tonic-clonic apilepsy.
Together with other drugs Zonegran is used to treat partial seizures.
Valium and tranquilizers (Klonopin or Tranxene) are effectivefor treatment of all seizures and are frequently used in the emergency room tostop an epilepsy attack.
The most common side effects of epilepsy medications mentioned above includes tiredness, drowsiness, rash, insomnia, headache, anxiety and confusions, blurred vision, problems with memory, weight loss or weight gain. It is rare, but some of these medications might induce loss of hearing, problems with liver, pancreas and blood platelets, and thinning of the bone.When treating epilepsy, the dose and medications might bedifferent for each patient. It is necessary to perform frequent blood panel atthe start of the treatment, to measure response of the patient’s body to themedicine.
Some of the epileptic seizures are persistent and don’trespond to the treatment. In these cases it is important to consult thespecialist.