Lamotrigine is used to treat certain types of epileptic seizures. It is also used to treat some forms of bipolar disorder. This medication can be taken alone or in combination with other drugs.
What is Lamotrigine?
Lamotrigine is an anticonvulsant. Its exact mechanism of action has not yet been identified.
How should Lamotrigine be taken?
Lamotrigine is typically administered orally in the form of tablets. The dosage varies from case to case.
Side effects associated with Lamotrigine
In rare cases, Lamotrigine can trigger severe skin reactions (sometimes fatal) such as Stevens-Johnson syndrome and toxic epidermal necrolysis. It also increases the risk of aseptic meningitis.
Among the other possible side effects of lamotrigine include the following:
- Blurry or double vision
- Painful menstruation
- Stuffy or runny nose
- Stomach pain and other stomach discomfort
- Difficulty sleeping
- Weight loss
It is important to contact a doctor immediately if you experience:
- Difficulty breathing
- Tightness in chest
- Swelling of the mouth, face, lips or tongue
- Amenorrhea or other menstrual cycle changes
- Pain or tenderness in the calves
- Chest pains
- Dark urine
- Coordination difficulties
- Difficult or painful urination
- Fast or irregular heartbeat
- Persistent fever, chills or sore throat
- Mood swings or behavioral changes
- Severe convulsions
- Pale stools
- Redness, peeling, swelling or blistering of the skin
- Severe weakness or muscle sensitivity
- Severe or persistent dizziness or stomach pain
- Shortness of breath
- Sores in the mouth or around the eyes
- Suicidal instinct
- Swelling of the hands, ankles or feet
- Enlarged lymph nodes
- Bruising or bleeding
- Unusual tiredness or weakness
- Itching or vaginal discharge
- Vision problems
Contraindications and warnings associated with the use of Lamotrigine
Lamotrigine may impair the ability to drive or operate hazardous machinery, especially when taken together with alcohol or other drugs. It can also compromise the efficacy of hormonal contraceptives and interfere with the results of some laboratory tests.
It may take several weeks before lamotrigine takes full effect. However, under no circumstances should this medication be discontinued until first consulting with a doctor. Lamotrigine should not be taken if you are taking dofetilide.
Before starting treatment with lamotrigine, it is important to tell your doctor if:
- You have any allergies to the active substance, its excipients, or any other drugs or food
- You are taking any other medications, herbal remedies or supplements. Mentioning in particular: carbamazepine, valproate, dofetilide, atazanavir / ritonavir, estrogen, lopinavir / ritonavir, phenobarbital, phenytoin, primidone, rifampicin, succinimide and hormonal contraceptives
- You are suffering (or have suffered) from kidney disease, liver or heart disease, rash, mental illnesses or mood disorders
- You are on dialysis
- You have suffered from rashes triggered by lamotrigine or other seizure medications
- You are portraying suicidal thinking or behavior
- You are pregnant or breastfeeding
It is important to inform physicians, surgeons and dentists of any ongoing treatment with lamotrigine.