Oxcarbazepine (By mouth)

Introduction

Oxcarbazepine (ox-kar-BAZ-e-peen)

Treats seizures.

Brand Name(s)

Oxtellar XR, Trileptal

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

How to Use This Medicine

Liquid, Tablet, Long Acting Tablet

  • Take your medicine as directed. Your dose may need to be changed several times to find what works best for you.
  • This medicine should come with a Medication Guide. Ask your pharmacist for a copy if you do not have one.
  • Swallow the extended-release tablet whole. Do not crush, break, or chew it.
  • Oral liquid: Measure the oral liquid medicine with a marked measuring spoon, oral syringe, or medicine cup. Shake well just before you measure a dose. Swallow the medicine directly, or mix it in a glass with a small amount of water and drink all of the mixture right away.
  • Food:
    • Take the extended-release tablet on an empty stomach at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after a meal.
    • You may take the oral liquid or regular tablet with or without food.
  • Missed dose: Take a dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, wait until then and take a regular dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up for a missed dose.
  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Store the oral liquid in the original container and use within 7 weeks after you first open the bottle. Throw away any unused liquid.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Some medicines and foods can affect how this drug works. Tell your doctor if you are also using any of the following:
    • Calcium channel blocker medicine, including felodipine or verapamil
    • Other medicine to control seizures
  • Tell your doctor if you use anything else that makes you sleepy. Some examples are allergy medicine, narcotic pain medicine, and alcohol.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have kidney disease or liver disease. Also tell your doctor if you are allergic to carbamazepine or tartrazine.
  • This medicine may cause the following problems:
    • Drug reaction with eosinophilia and systemic symptoms (DRESS), which may damage organs such as the liver, kidney, or heart
    • Low sodium levels in the blood
    • Serious skin or allergic reactions
    • Decreased levels of blood cells, which may cause bleeding problems or increase your risk for infection
  • This medicine may cause depression, thoughts of suicide, or changes in mood or behavior. Tell your doctor if you have a history of depression or mental health problems.
  • Do not stop using this medicine suddenly. Your doctor will need to slowly decrease your dose before you stop it completely. The seizures might become more frequent if you suddenly stop using this medicine.
  • Birth control that uses hormones may not work as well while you are using this medicine. Use a different type of birth control if you need to. Talk with your doctor if you have questions.
  • This medicine may make you dizzy or drowsy. Do not drive or do anything else that could be dangerous until you know how this medicine affects you.
  • Your doctor will do lab tests at regular visits to check on the effects of this medicine. Keep all appointments.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children. Never share your medicine with anyone.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
  • Blistering, peeling, red skin rash
  • Confusion, weakness, muscle twitching
  • Fever, skin rash, or swollen glands in your armpits, neck, or groin
  • Unusual thoughts or behaviors, thoughts of hurting yourself, or feeling depressed, irritable, nervous, restless
  • Unusual bleeding, bruising, or weakness

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Dizziness, headache
  • Nausea, vomiting, stomach pain
  • Trouble concentrating or speaking, tiredness, clumsiness, trouble walking
  • Vision changes, double vision

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Version Info

  • Last reviewed on 10/12/2016

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