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What Is Trileptal & How Does It Treat Epilepsy?

Learn about the epilepsy medication Trileptal from Steve Wolf, MD and Patty McGoldrick, NP in this Howcast video.

Transcript

A: Trileptal, otherwise known as oxcarbazepine is one of the newer anti-seizure medications. It's based off an old medication, carbamazepine or Tegretol, as you probably heard in the past. It's another fast sodium channel drug and very good for seizures with partial-complex seizures.

B: Seizures that start in one area of the brain and spread. It's well tolerated with fewer side effects than Tegretol or Carbatrol, which it's derived from. The biggest issue with that, the biggest side effect is, you can get some drowsiness when you start taking it. That usually goes away within a week or so.

B: You start the dose slowly and gradually increase it so there are fewer side effects. There is a risk of an allergic reaction, as there is with any medication. This presents, usually, as a red rash all over the trunk and chest. If that happens, just stop the medication. Take Benadryl, and then, slowly increase it again.There is the most sodium issues, but more in adults than in children.

A: It's also called an enzyme inducer. You have to watch what medications you mix this with, because it could affect how the other medications perform. When you start the medication, you might have to increase the dose after a few weeks, to adjust for how the liver is metabolizing it. It's a medication that you need to watch what you're using it with, and watch those rare side affects.

B: It can also decrease the efficacy of birth control pills. You need to be careful if you're on birth control pills, that you use some other means of contraception.

A: Trileptal or oxcarbazepine is a first line indicated drug, very good for partial-complex seizures, not to be used in generalized epilepsy, with very few side effects and very well tolerated.

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