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Phenobarbitone is used in epilepsy

How it works

Phenobarbitone controls seizures or fits by increasing the action of GABA, a chemical messenger which suppresses the abnormal and excessive activity of the nerve cells in the brain.

Common side effects

Increased sensitivity to light, Drowsiness, Anemia, Bruise, Bleeding, Impaired concentration, Memory impairment, Confusion, Convulsion, Coordination disorder, Decreased blood pressure, Decreased level of thyroid hormones, Depression, Jaundice like symptoms, Fever, Fibroma (benign tumours), Aggression, Hyperactivity, Irritation, Skin peeling, Joint pain, Softening of bones, Sore skin, Sore mouth, Swelling of glands, Inflammation of tendons, Weakness

Available Medicine

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Expert advice

  • Do not take phenobarbitone if you are allergic to phenobarbitone or any of the other ingredient of the tablet.
  • Doctor’s advice should be considered in case of patients with following history of disease conditions: liver or kidney disease; temporary or chronic pain; mental depression or illness; disorders of pituitary gland or adrenal gland (e.g. pheochromocytoma); breathing problems; or porphyria (disturbance of metabolism that can be seen as disorders of the skin or other organs).
  • Do not take phenobarbitone if you have an addiction to alcohol or drug abuse.
  • Avoid taking phenobarbitone if you are pregnant or breast-feeding or planning to become pregnant.
  • Do not drive or operate machinery immediately after taking phenobarbitone as it may cause drowsiness.

Frequently asked questions


Q. What is phenobarbitone used for?
Phenobarbitone is used to control seizures in epilepsy patients and is also used to relieve anxiety. It may also be used as a sedative for patients about to undergo surgery; to treat people who are suffering from withdrawal symptoms from addiction to other seizure medication or who are going to stop medication

Q. What is phenobarbitone sodium?
Phenobarbitone sodium is one of the salt forms of phenobarbitone and is used for the same indications

Q. How does phenobarbitone work?
Phenobarbitone belongs to barbiturates. It acts by slowing down the activity of the brai

Q. Is it an enzyme inducer?
It is an enzyme inducer

Q. Is phenobarbitone a controlled drug?
Phenobarbitone is a controlled drug

Q. What is phenobarbitone syrup?
Phenobarbitone is available as tablet and syrup form for use.

Content on this page was last updated on 28 December, 2016, by Dr. Varun Gupta (MD Pharmacology)