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Overview

Levetiracetam

Prescription vs.OTC: Prescription by Doctor required

An anticonvulsant, Levetiracetam is normally combined with other medicines and is used to treat different types of seizures in both adults as well as children who are suffering from epilepsy. Levetiracetam is known to treat partial-onset, tonic-clonic and myoclonic seizures in epileptic patients. Apart from that, it may also be used for treating other health conditions as and when determined by the doctor. In cases of children and elderly people, it needs to be prescribed with caution. The medicine decreases the abnormal activities that happens in the brain during a seizure. It has to be taken orally. The medicine is available in both tablet and liquid form.

Levetiracetam belongs to the group of drugs called anticonvulsants, which helps in reducing or preventing the frequency of seizures that one experiences if suffering from different kinds of epilepsy. This medication is generally combined with other medicines and is useful in treating myoclonic (jerking/twitching of muscles), partial-onset (seizure affecting in one part of the brain) or general tonic-clonic seizures (affecting your entire brain) in epileptic patients. It slows down the abnormal impulses of the nerves in your brain, thus reducing the seizures. It can be taken both by adults and children suffering from epilepsy. Levetiracetam is available both in tablet and liquid form.

There are some medical conditions that may have an interaction with Levetiracetam. Therefore, it is important that you inform your doctor if you are pregnant or planning to be, have a kidney disease or are undergoing dialysis, any other medicines that you take on a regular basis, allergies if any and a history of mental conditions like depression or suicidal tendencies.

The dosage of Levetiracetam is generally based on the medical condition and responsiveness of your body towards the treatment. In children, the body weight is also taken into consideration. You may be prescribed a low dose initially by your doctor that can, in time, be increased gradually depending upon how your body responds. You must take this medication on a regular basis for best results. However, ensure that you do not overdose or continue having it longer than you have been prescribed. Also, do not stop taking Levetiracetam abruptly, as it can cause your seizures to worsen. The dose should be gradually decreased and then stopped, if required.

Levetiracetam has a tendency to make you drowsy in the initial weeks of treatment, therefore you should refrain yourself from driving or any other activities that require alertness. Also, you must limit your consumption of alcohol when under this medication.

The side effects of Levetiracetam include feeling unusually tired, dizzy, weak or drowsy. These symptoms generally occur in the first month of taking the medicine, and then gradually lessen as the body adjusts to it. You may have to seek medical help if you experience more serious side effects such as:

  • of hair. However, you should consult your doctor as soon as you can if you experience any of these symptoms:

    • A skin rash, itching, hives, swelling of your lips, tongue or the face. It would indicate that you had an allergic reaction to the medication.
    • If you are suffering from fever, sore throat or chills.
    • Changes in your vision.
    • Sudden seizures
    • Unusual bleeding or bruising
    • Redness or yellowing of the skin, or blisters, peeling and loosening of your skin. It may also include the insides of your mouth.
    • Discoloured urine or light coloured stool
    • Losing appetite, or pain in the right side of your upper belly
    • Feeling unusually tired or weak
    • Having flu-like symptoms

    Since Levetiracetam may cause liver problems in some cases, it is advised to limit your consumption of alcohol when you are under this medication.

Levetiracetam is used in the treatment of Epilepsy which is a brain disorder that causes repeated seizures. Uncontrolled jerking movements and loss of consciousness are some of the symptoms of Epilepsy.
Levetiracetam is used in the treatment of seizures which is a brain disorder and may lead to Epilepsy if untreated. Brain injury or infection of the brain are the common causes of seizures.
Do not take if you have a known allergy to Levetiracetam
In addition to its intended effect, Levetiracetam may cause some unwanted effects too. In such cases, you must seek medical attention immediately. This is not an exhaustive list of side effects. Please inform your doctor if you experience any adverse reaction to the medication.
Aggression or anger Major Common
Anxiety Major Common
Headache Major Common
Shivering Major Common
Loss of appetite Major Common
Dizziness Major Less Common
Mood swings Major Less Common
Weakness Major Less Common
Double vision Major Less Common
Muscle pain Minor Common
Body pain Minor Less Common
Cough Minor Less Common
Skin rash Minor Less Common
Change in skin color Minor Less Common
How long is the duration of effect?
The effect of this medicine lasts for an average of 18 to 24 hours.
What is the onset of action?
The peak effect of this medicine can be observed within 1 hour for an immediate release tablet and within 4 hours for an extended release tablet.
Are there any pregnancy warnings?
This medicine is not recommended for use in pregnant women. Use only if clearly needed under the supervision of the doctor.
Is it habit forming?
Habit forming tendency has been reported.
Are there any breast-feeding warnings?
This medicine is known to excreted through human breast milk. It is not recommended for breastfeeding women.
Are there any missed dose instructions?
If you miss a dose of Levetiracetam, take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it's almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose. Do not double your dose to make up for the missed dose.
Are there any overdose instructions?
Seek emergency medical treatment or contact the doctor in case of an overdose.
India
United States
Japan
Below is the list of medicines, which contains Levetiracetam as ingredient
Arinna Lifesciences Pvt. Ltd
Alkem Laboratories Ltd
Micro Labs Ltd
Arinna Lifesciences Pvt. Ltd
Dr. Reddys Laboratories Ltd
Alkem Laboratories Ltd
Intas Pharmaceuticals Ltd
Alkem Laboratories Ltd
Abbott Healthcare Pvt. Ltd
Intas Pharmaceuticals Ltd
Alkem Laboratories Ltd
Intas Pharmaceuticals Ltd
Whenever you take more than one medicine, or mix it with certain foods or beverages, you're at risk of a drug interaction.
Interaction with Alcohol
Alcohol Moderate
Consumption of alcohol with this medicine is not recommended as it can result in dizziness and difficulty in concentration. Avoid activities that need mental alertness like driving or operating machinery.
Interaction with Lab Test
Lab
Information not available.
Interaction with Food
Food
Information not available.
Interaction with Medicine
Opioids Major
Use of Levetiracetam with opioids or any cough preparations containing opioids is not recommended. Because, it may increase the risk of adverse effects like breathlessness, and even death. Suitable dose adjustments or an alternate medicine should be considered under the doctor's supervision.
Nortriptyline Moderate
Use of these medicines may increase the risk of dizziness, drowsiness, and confusion. This interaction is more likely to happen in the elderly population. Consumption of alcohol and operating heavy machinery or driving is not recommended. Suitable dose adjustments or an alternate medicine should be considered under doctor's supervision.
Cetirizine Moderate
Use of Levetiracetam with cetirizine or levocetirizine should be avoided if possible. This interaction is more likely to happen in the elderly population. Consumption of alcohol and operating heavy machinery or driving is not recommended. Suitable dose adjustments or an alternate medicine should be considered under doctor's supervision.
What are you using Levetiracetam for?
Epilepsy
Other
Seizures
How much was the improvement?
Average
Excellent
Poor
How long did it take before seeing improvement?
More than 2 days
How frequently did you take this medicine?
Twice a day
How did you take this medicine?
With or without food
With Food
What were the side effects of this medicine?
Anxiety
No Side Effects
Disclaimer: The information produced here is best of our knowledge and experience and we have tried our best to make it as accurate and up-to-date as possible, but we would like to request that it should not be treated as a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Lybrate is a medium to provide our audience with the common information on medicines and does not guarantee its accuracy or exhaustiveness. Even if there is no mention of a warning for any drug or combination, it never means that we are claiming that the drug or combination is safe for consumption without any proper consultation with an expert.

Lybrate does not take responsibility for any aspect of medicines or treatments. If you have any doubts about your medication, we strongly recommend you to see a doctor immediately.

Popular Questions & Answers

I have been prescribed levetiracetam for Dyscognitive seizures. How much daily dose should be taken for a proper cure.

M.Ch - Neuro Surgery
Neurosurgeon, Gandhidham
ideally it is to be started 500 mg twice a day and if required it can be increased to 1gm twice a day... max dose is 3 gm per day but usually not required
2 people found this helpful

My mother underwent Burhole surgery for SDH after an accident in July 2016. She was insulin dependent diabetic for the past 15 years and also hypertension patient. Previously she was under medication with ecosprin, statins along with anti hypertensives and diabetic medication. From the last few months after discharge from hospital, She had been under medication with levetiracetam 500 (Twice daily), Metosartan 50 (Twice daily), Syndopa 110 (1/2 Tablet twice daily), Human Mixtard (20 units twice daily, Glycomet GP2 (twice daily) and Nexito forte at bedtime. Till recent past i.e up to 03/12/2016, she was given Colihinz 400 in the morning along with Clobazam 5 in addition to the above drugs. Though she is recovered on physical side, There has been continuous agitation, aggression and hallucinations, She feel as if she sees persons not present before us, feels as if hearing voices and sounds not heard by us. She fears of the traumatic incidents in respect of her relatives, snakebites or somebody belonging to offspring is attacked etc. She suffers from exertion and tremors at that time. Now most of the this condition is being observed. Is there any medical treatment for bringing her out of the hallucinations.

MBBS, MD - Psychiatry
Psychiatrist, Mumbai
My mother underwent Burhole surgery for SDH after an accident in July 2016. She was insulin dependent diabetic for th...
Following head injury, behavioral changes or changes in personality are quite common. She seems to be having some psychotic symptoms. Please take her to a neuropsychiatrist immediately. with the right medication it is likely her symptoms will improve. Given her significant medical and surgical history, it is recommended that she is assessed in person rather than taking advice online.
1 person found this helpful

I am a epileptic patient and I am planning to take fat burner soon to lose my body fat. For epilepsy I am taking levetiracetam 250 mg and clobazam 10 mg. Is it safe to take fat burner to lose my body weight? It will stimulant free far burner! Soo is it safe to take or not? I will be doing workout too. Hoping positive reply! Thanks!

DHMS (Hons.)
Homeopath, Patna
I am a epileptic patient and I am planning to take fat burner soon to lose my body fat. For epilepsy I am taking leve...
Dear lybrate user, you r advised do to go for natural recourse to burn your fats. Go for a brisk walk in d morning for an hr to regulate your blood circulation. Go for swimming, cycling, gardening, running. Opt a staircase in stead of a, lift. Take, oats, green tea in d breakfast. Salad, fruits, sprouts b consumed in lunch, cutting bread, rice to 10%. Take, green tea and biscuits in d evening. Take, homoeo medicine. @ cal carb 30-6 pills, thrice a day. @ phytolacca berry q 10 drops, thrice a day with little water. Go for meditation to eliminate fats cells. Take, care.

I am taking levigress-500mg post my brain operation (held in Dec-2013), but from last few months I am gaining my weight and fat. Is this the side effect of this tablet? I am taking 3 dosage of (1mg levigress) in a day.

C.S.C, D.C.H, M.B.B.S
General Physician, Alappuzha
I am taking levigress-500mg post my brain operation (held in Dec-2013), but from last few months I am gaining my weig...
Side effects of Levetiracetam : Dizziness, Vertigo, Headache, Drowsiness, Ataxia, Anorexia, Nervousness, Rashes, Depression, Tremor, Asthenia, Aggression. Weight gain can be related to overeating and lack of exercise
2 people found this helpful

Popular Health Tips

Seizures - 3 Ways It Can Be Treated!

MCh - Neurosurgery, MS-General Surgery, MBBS
Neurosurgeon, Delhi
Seizures - 3 Ways It Can Be Treated!

The primary aim of the treatment in patients suffering from seizure is leasing a seizure-free life without giving way to any adverse effects. This goal can be accomplished in over 60 percent people with the help of anticonvulsants. Some patients also experience adverse effects since they suffer from a seizure which is refractory to medical therapy. Here are some of the common treatment options for seizures:

  1. Monotherapy: Sometimes, monotherapy is given as it reduces the chance of all sorts of adverse effects and even avoids drug interactions. Moreover, this type of treatment approach is much less expensive than polytherapy since many older generation of the anticonvulsant agent comprises of hepatic enzyme which is responsible for reducing the serum level of the concomitant drug which leads to an increase in the dosage level of such medicines.
  2. Social And vocational rehabilitation: People suffering from problems in psychosocial adjustments after the diagnosis may also need social and vocational rehabilitation. Many physicians do not pay enough attention to the consequences that an epilepsy diagnosis may leave on the patient. For instance, people with epilepsy may have a fear of experiencing next attack of seizure and they may be unable to work at heights or drive.
  3. Consulting an expert: It is important to refer patients with intractable spells to epileptologist or neurologist for subsequent workup. A neurosurgical consultation may also be needed when the patient has to be treated surgically.

Importance of anticonvulsant therapy

Patients who have had already suffered from recurrent attacks of unprovoked seizure may need treatment with an anticonvulsant. This treatment is not recommended until the person has risk factors for suffering from the problem yet again. The primary means of treating seizure is anticonvulsant therapy where the most suitable drug is chosen based on accurate diagnosis of the syndrome as a response to specific anticonvulsants may vary from one patient to another. The difference in response may reflect the various pathophysiologic mechanisms in different types of seizures.

Types of anticonvulsant therapy
Some of the anticonvulsant therapy medication may have multiple action mechanism while some have an only single mechanism of action. Some of the most common variants of the therapy include:

  1. Neuronal potassium channel referred to as KCNQ opener
  2. Blockers of unique binding sites such as perampanel, gabapentin, and levetiracetam
  3. H-current modulators such as lamotrigine and gabapentin
  4. Carbonic anhydrase inhibitors such as zonisamide and topiramate
  5. Alpha-amino 3-hydroxy 5-methyl 4-isoxazole propionic acid receptor blockers like topiramate and perampanel.
  6. N and L-calcium channel blockers like zonisamide, valproate, topiramate, and lamotrigine

Even though there are so many types of drugs available, all of them cannot be used for the treatment of seizures. Doctors would evaluate the condition thoroughly before prescribing a medication that can be helpful in reducing the severity of the condition.

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

2734 people found this helpful

Brain Aneurysms - Key Treatments That Can Help With It!

MCh - Neurosurgery, MBBS
Neurosurgeon, Chennai
Brain Aneurysms - Key Treatments That Can Help With It!

Are you experiencing excruciating headache? you probably didn't know but you could be suffering from brain aneurysms. It is described as bulge formation in the blood vessel in the brain. It is a totally asymptomatic condition as one does not display any symptoms until the bulge vessel ruptures which may result in blood releasing in the skull which may further lead to a stroke. The bulge is often formed in the gaps between the tissues covering the brain and brain itself.

Most common treatment options for ruptured aneurysm
There are two common treatment options for a ruptured brain aneurysm endovascular coiling and surgical clipping. Both these procedures have certain risk factors, therefore it is best to discuss the details with a neurologist. The endovascular coiling is a less invasive process where the surgeon inserts a hollow tube or catheter into an artery and threads it through the body to reach an aneurysm. Then a guide wire is sent to push a soft platinum wire through the catheter. This coils up and disrupts the flow of blood into the aneurysm and leads to blood clotting. The clotting is essential in sealing off the aneurysm from the artery.

The surgical clipping is a process used for closing off the aneurysm, and a section of the skull is required to be removed for assessing the affected part. It also helps in locating the blood vessel that is responsible for the problem. Finally, a metal clip is placed on the neck of the aneurysm to stop the flow of blood. Though endovascular coiling is less invasive and said to be safer, adequate post-treatment care is necessary to minimize risks.
To treat larger aneurysms, a treatment called flow diverters may be useful. Since, the treatment is decided based on the size, location, apperance and your health condition, your doctor will be the best person to take the final call.

Other procedures to treat symptoms
Other than the surgical procedures several treatments might be prescribed to treat the symptoms and to manage complications. A few commonly advised treatments are:

  1. Pain relievers: To manage headaches
  2. Calcium channel blockers: One of the most common complications that may arise with an aneurysm is calcium entering the walls of blood vessels which may result in narrowing of walls. Calcium channel blockers are medications may be prescribed by the doctors to deal with the complication
  3. Anti seizure medications: Medications such as levetiracetam, phenytoin, valproic acid, and others are prescribed to treat seizures associated with aneurysms
  4. Procedures to prevent stroke: An insufficient blood flow may result in a stroke and to prevent it, the drug vasopressor is injected intravenously, or angioplasty is performed.
  5. Rehabilitative therapy: Damage to the brain may require the patient to undergo several physical and occupational therapy.

If you suffer from the condition, it is advised to keep a check on the blood pressure and quit smoking as they can help in reducing the risks associated with aneurysms. 

In case you have a concern or query you can always consult an expert & get answers to your questions!

3671 people found this helpful

Managing EPILEPSY in WOMEN

MBBS, MD - General Medicine, DM - Neurology
Neurologist, Hyderabad
Managing EPILEPSY in WOMEN

Epilepsy is a common illness and therefore, we commonly encounter women with epilepsy (WWE), who are either pregnant or contemplating pregnancy. There are a lot of apprehensions and misconceptions regarding managing epilepsy in this group of WWE. Here, I wish to highlight some of the important aspects of managing epilepsy in women who are planning a pregnancy or are currently pregnant.

1. If a woman is seizure-free for at least two years, she can consider withdrawing anti-epileptic drugs (aeds) under the supervision of neurologist, and then plan for pregnancy.

2. If a woman has seizures, it is better to continue aeds during pregnancy, as the risk to the baby is several times higher with seizures, as compared to that with aeds.

3. Sodium valproate has the highest risk to the developing baby, and it should be avoided in pregnancy.

4. Aeds such as levetiracetam, lamotrigine, oxcarbazepine, topiramate, etc are safe and may be continued during pregnancy.

5. The lowest effective dose of aed should be used.

6. Try to use only a single anti-epileptic drug, if possible.

7. Folic acid vitamin supplements should be used in pregnancy.

8. The dose of anti-epileptic medication may have to be increased during the last three months of pregnancy.

9. Ct scan of the brain should be avoided, as far as possible, during pregnancy, as radiation exposure due to it may harm the baby.

10. Mri brain is reasonably safe for baby, especially after the first three months of pregnancy. So, if needed, it may be performed.


 

9 people found this helpful

Table of Content

About Levetiracetam
When is Levetiracetam prescribed?
What are the contraindications of Levetiracetam?
What are the side effects of Levetiracetam?
Key highlights of Levetiracetam
What are the dosage instructions?
Where is the Levetiracetam approved?
Medicines containing Levetiracetam
What are the interactions for Levetiracetam?