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    Carbamazepine

    Information about Carbamazepine

    Carbamazepine uses

    Carbamazepine is used in the treatment of epilepsy/seizures and trigeminal neuralgia.

    How carbamazepine works

    Carbamazepine is an antiepileptic medication. It controls seizures or fits by decreasing the abnormal and excessive activity of the nerve cells in the brain.

    Common side effects of carbamazepine

    Nausea, Vomiting, Dizziness, Balance disorder (loss of balance), Drowsiness
    Content Details
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    Written By
    Dr. Swati Mishra
    BDS
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    Reviewed By
    Dr. Khushbu Goel
    DM, MD
    Last updated on:
    07 Aug 2019 | 12:06 PM (IST)
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    Available Medicine for Carbamazepine

    • ₹7 to ₹39
      Novartis India Ltd
      7 variant(s)
    • ₹7 to ₹34
      Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd
      6 variant(s)
    • ₹7 to ₹34
      Intas Pharmaceuticals Ltd
      7 variant(s)
    • ₹7 to ₹51
      Abbott
      9 variant(s)
    • ₹15 to ₹31
      Micro Labs Ltd
      5 variant(s)
    • ₹7 to ₹33
      Torrent Pharmaceuticals Ltd
      5 variant(s)
    • ₹7 to ₹30
      Crescent Therapeutics Ltd
      5 variant(s)
    • ₹14 to ₹32
      La Pharmaceuticals
      3 variant(s)
    • ₹13
      Shine Pharmaceuticals Ltd
      1 variant(s)
    • ₹12 to ₹26
      Psychotropics India Ltd
      3 variant(s)

    Expert advice for Carbamazepine

    • Take your medication regularly as directed by your doctor as missing doses can trigger seizures.
    • Do not change the brand of your medicine and make sure that you have sufficient amount of medicine present with you.
    • Some healthy tips to prevent seizures:
      • Practice yoga every day.
      • Get enough sleep at nighttime.
      • Limit the use of screen time such as mobile/ laptop.
      • Take your medication on time.
    • It may cause dizziness and sleepiness. Do not drive or do anything that requires mental focus until you know how it affects you.
    • Your doctor may get regular tests done to monitor the level of blood cells in your blood while taking this medication. 
    • Talk to your doctor if you notice sudden mood changes or develop suicidal thoughts.
    • Inform your doctor if you notice a rash or other skin changes such as reddish spot or circular patches while taking this medicine.
    • Do not stop taking the medication suddenly without talking to your doctor as it may increase the seizure frequency.

    Frequently asked questions for Carbamazepine

    Carbamazepine

    Q. Is Carbamazepine an analgesic? What is it used for?

    No, Carbamazepine is not an analgesic and should not be used for regular aches or pains. It is an anti-epileptic medicine which is given to treat fits (seizures). It is also used to treat pain of trigeminal neuralgia and to control mood disorders when other medicines fail to work.

    Q. What are the long-term effects of Carbamazepine ?

    The long-term side effects of Carbamazepine vary from person to person. While some people can take Carbamazepine safely for several years, some may develop side effects on using it for a long term. These side effects include osteoporosis and osteopenia in which the bones become weak and can be easily fractured. If you have been prescribed Carbamazepine for long term, get your bone density checked at regular intervals, maintain a healthy diet and exercise daily.

    Q. How do I stop taking Carbamazepine ?

    You should stop Carbamazepine only after consulting your doctor. The dose of Carbamazepine should be reduced gradually so that the condition for which you are taking it does not recur.

    Q. How quickly does Carbamazepine start working?

    Your symptoms may take 1-2 weeks to improve. In some cases, it may take longer.

    Q. What should I tell my doctor before taking this medicine?

    Inform your doctor if you are taking any other medicines including medicines for epilepsy or seizures, medicines used to thin your blood (e.g., warfarin), birth control pills, medicines to control bacterial infection (e.g., chloramphenicol, metronidazole, and doxycycline), medicines to control viral infection (e.g., nelfinavir), and asthma medicines (e.g., theophylline and montelukast), etc. Also, inform your doctor if you are planning to become pregnant or are breastfeeding. Further, you should tell the doctor if you have ever had liver problems, kidney problems, lung problems, or porphyria (a rare blood pigment disorder).

    Q. What should I avoid while taking Carbamazepine?

    If Carbamazepine makes you feel sleepy, avoid driving or operating heavy machinery. Alcohol consumption should be avoided since taking both together may cause excessive sleepiness.

    Q. How can I look for early symptoms of suicidal thoughts and actions?

    Pay attention to any changes, especially sudden changes in mood, behavior, thoughts, or feelings. Keep all follow-up visits with your doctor as scheduled. Call your doctor as needed, especially if you are worried about any symptoms.

    Q. Can the use of Carbamazepine lead to weight gain? If yes, how can it be managed?

    Yes, Carbamazepine commonly causes weight gain due to increase in appetite. You can manage your weight by eating a healthy diet, consuming low calorie food and including more vegetables and fruits in your diet. Regular physical exercise will be very helpful.

    Q. Can the use of Carbamazepine affect my sex life?

    Though rare but Carbamazepine may cause decreased sexual desire. It may also impair male fertility as it may reduce sperm count and/or motility. Consult your doctor if you develop these symptoms.

    Q. I am taking Carbamazepine for trigeminal neuralgia. For how long do I need to take it?

    Once the medicine relieves your pain, talk to your doctor who will gradually reduce your dose. After taking the reduced dose for several weeks, Carbamazepine can possibly be stopped if there is no recurrence of pain.

    Q. How can I reduce the side effects of Carbamazepine?

    Side effects of Carbamazepine can be reduced by starting it at a low dose and then increasing the dose gradually, until an effective dose is reached.

    Q. When should I go for laboratory test when taking this drug?

    Before starting treatment with Carbamazepine, your doctor may ask you to get regular blood tests, liver tests, and in some cases, even urine test. You may need to take these tests from time to time during your treatment. This is quite usual and nothing to worry about.

    Content on this page was last updated on 07 August, 2019, by Dr. Varun Gupta (MD Pharmacology)