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Lamotrigine (la MOE tri jeen)

Adult Medication

Brand Names: U.S.

LaMICtal; LaMICtal ODT; LaMICtal Starter; LaMICtal XR

Brand Names: Canada

Apo-Lamotrigine®; Auro-Lamotrigine; Lamictal®; Mylan-Lamotrigine; PMS-Lamotrigine; ratio-Lamotrigine; Teva-Lamotrigine

Warning

  • A very bad skin reaction (Stevens-Johnson syndrome/toxic epidermal necrolysis) may happen. It can cause very bad health problems that may not go away, and sometimes death. Get medical help right away if you have signs like red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin (with or without fever); red or irritated eyes; or sores in your mouth, throat, nose, or eyes.
  • The chance of a skin reaction may be raised in children. It may also be raised if you take valproic acid or divalproex sodium with this drug, if you start taking this drug at too high of a dose, or if your dose is raised too fast. Skin reactions have happened without any of these. Talk with your doctor.
  • Most cases of skin reactions have happened within 2 to 8 weeks of starting this drug, but some show up after longer treatment like 6 months. Talk with your doctor.

What is this drug used for?

  • It is used to help control certain kinds of seizures.
  • It is used to treat bipolar problems.

What do I need to tell my doctor BEFORE I take this drug?

  • If you have an allergy to lamotrigine or any other part of this drug.
  • If you are allergic to any drugs like this one, any other drugs, foods, or other substances. Tell your doctor about the allergy and what signs you had, like rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.
This drug may interact with other drugs or health problems.
Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all of your drugs (prescription or OTC, natural products, vitamins) and health problems. You must check to make sure that it is safe for you to take this drug with all of your drugs and health problems. Do not start, stop, or change the dose of any drug without checking with your doctor.

What are some things I need to know or do while I take this drug?

  • Tell dentists, surgeons, and other doctors that you use this drug.
  • Avoid driving and doing other tasks or actions that call for you to be alert until you see how this drug affects you.
  • It may take several weeks to see the full effects.
  • Do not stop taking this drug all of a sudden without calling your doctor. You may have a greater risk of side effects. If you need to stop this drug, you will want to slowly stop it as ordered by your doctor.
  • Have your blood work checked often. Talk with your doctor.
  • If you stop taking this drug, talk with your doctor. You may need to be restarted at a lower dose and raise the dose slowly.
  • Talk with your doctor before you drink beer, wine, mixed drinks, or use other drugs and natural products that slow your actions.
  • A very bad and sometimes deadly reaction has happened with this drug. Most of the time, this reaction has signs like fever, rash, or swollen glands with problems in body organs like the liver, kidney, blood, heart, muscles and joints, or lungs. Talk with the doctor.
  • Use with care in children. Talk with the doctor.
  • Some drugs may look the same as this drug or may have names that sound like this drug. Always check to make sure you have the right product. If you see any change in the way this drug looks like shape, color, size, or wording, check with your pharmacist.
  • Birth control pills and other hormone-based birth control may change how much of this drug is in your body. Talk to your doctor before you start or stop any hormone-based birth control. The chance of side effects may be raised when taking birth control pills during the week that the pills are not active. Talk with your doctor.
  • Birth control pills and other hormone-based birth control may not work as well to prevent pregnancy. Use some other kind of birth control also like a condom when taking this drug.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of using this drug while you are pregnant.
  • Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding. You will need to talk about any risks to your baby.

What are some side effects that I need to call my doctor about right away?

WARNING/CAUTION: Even though it may be rare, some people may have very bad and sometimes deadly side effects when taking a drug. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect:
  • Signs of an allergic reaction, like rash; hives; itching; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin with or without fever; wheezing; tightness in the chest or throat; trouble breathing or talking; unusual hoarseness; or swelling of the mouth, face, lips, tongue, or throat.
  • Signs of infection. These include a fever of 100.5°F (38°C) or higher, chills, very bad sore throat, ear or sinus pain, cough, more sputum or change in color of sputum, pain with passing urine, mouth sores, wound that will not heal, or anal itching or pain.
  • Signs of liver problems like dark urine, feeling tired, not hungry, upset stomach or stomach pain, light-colored stools, throwing up, or yellow skin or eyes.
  • Signs of kidney problems like unable to pass urine, change in the amount of urine passed, blood in the urine, or a big weight gain.
  • Shortness of breath, a big weight gain, swelling in the arms or legs.
  • Swollen gland.
  • Feeling very tired or weak.
  • If seizures are worse or not the same after starting this drug.
  • Very bad muscle pain or weakness.
  • Very bad joint pain or swelling.
  • Any bruising or bleeding.
  • Change in eyesight.
  • Very bad dizziness or passing out.
  • Change in balance.
  • Not able to control eye movements.
  • Chest pain or pressure.
  • Patients who take this drug may be at a greater risk of having thoughts or actions of suicide. The risk may be greater in people who have had these thoughts or actions in the past. Watch people who take this drug closely. Call the doctor right away if signs like low mood (depression), nervousness, restlessness, grouchiness, panic attacks, or changes in mood or actions are new or worse. Call the doctor right away if any thoughts or actions of suicide occur.
  • This drug may raise the chance of a very bad brain problem called aseptic meningitis. Call your doctor right away if you have a headache, fever, chills, very upset stomach or throwing up, stiff neck, rash, bright lights bother your eyes, feeling sleepy, or change in thinking clearly and with logic.

What are some other side effects of this drug?

All drugs may cause side effects. However, many people have no side effects or only have minor side effects. Call your doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:
  • Dizziness.
  • Feeling sleepy.
  • Headache.
  • Upset stomach or throwing up.
  • Feeling tired or weak.
  • Shakiness.
  • Not able to sleep.
  • Runny nose.
  • Loose stools (diarrhea).
  • Belly pain.
These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your doctor. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.
You may report side effects to your national health agency.

How is this drug best taken?

Use this drug as ordered by your doctor. Read and follow the dosing on the label closely.

All products:

  • Take as you have been told, even if you feel well.
  • To gain the most benefit, do not miss doses.
  • Take with or without food. Take with food if it causes an upset stomach.
  • Do not change the dose or stop this drug. This could cause seizures. Talk with your doctor.

Extended-release tablets:

  • Swallow whole. Do not chew, break, or crush.
  • If you have trouble swallowing, talk with your doctor.
  • Chewable dispersible tablet:
  • It may be swallowed whole, chewed, or mixed in water or fruit juice.
  • If chewed, drink a little water or fruit juice to help swallow.
  • You may break up tablet by adding liquid to cover tablet in a glass or spoon. Wait at least 1 minute until fully broken up, then mix and drink.

Oral-disintegrating tablet:

  • Place on your tongue and let it melt. Water is not needed. Do not swallow it whole. Do not chew, break, or crush it.

What do I do if I miss a dose?

  • Take a missed dose as soon as you think about it.
  • If it is close to the time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your normal time.
  • Do not take 2 doses at the same time or extra doses.

How do I store and/or throw out this drug?

  • Store at room temperature.
  • Protect from light.
  • Store in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.
  • Keep all drugs out of the reach of children and pets.
  • Check with your pharmacist about how to throw out unused drugs.

General drug facts

  • If your symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your doctor.
  • Do not share your drugs with others and do not take anyone else’s drugs.
  • Keep a list of all your drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your doctor.
  • Talk with the doctor before starting any new drug, including prescription or OTC, natural products, or vitamins.
  • Some drugs may have another patient information leaflet. If you have any questions about this drug, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • If you think there has been an overdose, call your poison control center or get medical care right away. Be ready to tell or show what was taken, how much, and when it happened.

Consumer Information Use and Disclaimer

This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only the healthcare provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for a specific patient. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from the healthcare provider. You must talk with the healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.

Copyright

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