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Zonisamide (zoe NIS a mide)

Pediatric Medication

Brand Names: U.S.

Zonegran

What is this drug used for?

  • It is used to treat seizures.
  • It may be given to your child for other reasons. Talk with the doctor.

Is it safe for my child to take this drug?

  • Not if your child has an allergy to zonisamide or any other part of this drug.
  • Be sure to let the doctor know if your child has any allergies or side effects to drugs, foods, or dyes. Make sure to tell about the allergy and what signs your child had. This includes telling about rash; hives; itching; shortness of breath; wheezing; cough; swelling of face, lips, tongue, or throat; or any other signs.
  • If your child has a sulfa (sulfonamide) allergy, talk with the doctor.

What are some things I need to know or do while my child takes this drug?

  • Tell dentists, surgeons, and other doctors that your child is using this drug.
  • If your child is allergic to tartrazine, talk with your child’s doctor. Some products have tartrazine.
  • Have your child avoid tasks or actions that call for alertness until you see how this drug affects your child. These are things like riding a bike, playing sports, or using items such as scissors, lawnmowers, electric scooters, toy cars, or motorized vehicles.
  • Have your child’s blood work checked often. Talk with your child’s doctor.
  • Sweating less has happened with this drug mainly in children. Sometimes, this has led to heat stroke and hospital stays. Talk with the doctor.
  • Have your child be careful in hot weather or while your child is being active. Have your child drink lots of fluids to stop fluid loss.
  • This drug may cause an acid blood problem (metabolic acidosis). The chance may be higher in children and in people with kidney problems, breathing problems, or loose stools (diarrhea). The chance may also be higher if your child takes certain other drugs, has surgery, or is on a diet high in fat called a ketogenic diet. Over time, metabolic acidosis can cause kidney stones, bone problems, or growth problems in children. Talk with your child’s doctor.
  • Alcohol may interact with this drug. Be sure your child does not drink beer, wine, or mixed drinks.
  • Talk with the doctor before giving your child other drugs and natural products that may slow your child’s actions.
  • This drug is not approved for use in children younger than 16 years of age. Talk with the doctor.
  • If your child has kidney disease, talk with the doctor.
  • If your child has liver disease, talk with the doctor.
  • If your child has mental illness, talk with the doctor.
  • Check all drugs your child is taking with your child’s doctor. This drug may not mix well with some other drugs.

If your child is or may be sexually active:

  • Have your child use birth control to prevent pregnancy while taking this drug.

If your child is pregnant or breast-feeding a baby:

  • This drug may cause harm to the unborn baby if your child takes it during pregnancy.
  • Talk with the doctor if your child is pregnant, becomes pregnant, or is breast-feeding a baby. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of using this drug.

What are some side effects that I need to call my child’s 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 child’s doctor or get medical help right away if your child has 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.
  • If any of this news causes you to be worried, any of the unwanted side effects happen, or if your child is not better after taking this drug.
  • If your child shows signs of very bad dizziness or passes out.
  • If your child has a change in thinking clearly and with logic.
  • If your child is not sweating during activities or in warm temperatures.
  • If your child has a change in balance.
  • If your child’s seizures are worse or not the same after starting this drug.
  • If your child has back pain, belly pain, or blood in the urine. May be signs of a kidney stone.
  • If your child has trouble speaking.
  • If your child has a change in eyesight.
  • If your child has very bad muscle pain or weakness.
  • If your child has swelling.
  • If your child has shakiness, trouble moving around, or stiffness.
  • Signs of too much acid in the blood (metabolic acidosis) like fast breathing, fast heartbeat, a heartbeat the does not feel normal, very bad upset stomach or throwing up, feeling very sleepy, shortness of breath, or feeling very tired or weak.
  • 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.
  • High fever, fever that goes away and comes back, or long-lasting fever.
  • Not able to focus.
  • A burning, numbness, or tingling feeling that is not normal.
  • Not able to control eye movements.
  • Memory problems or loss.
  • Bone pain.
  • Feeling very sleepy.
  • Very bad and rarely deadly effects have happened with sulfa (sulfonamide) drugs like this one. Call your doctor right away if you have a rash; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin; red or irritated eyes; sores in your mouth, throat, nose, or eyes; fever, chills, or sore throat; cough that is new or worse; feeling very tired or weak; any bruising or bleeding; or 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.
  • 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 your child has signs like red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin (with or without fever); red or irritated eyes; or sores in the mouth, throat, nose, or eyes.
  • 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.

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 child’s doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother your child or do not go away:
  • Feeling sleepy.
  • Feeling tired or weak.
  • Dizziness.
  • Headache.
  • Upset stomach.
  • Not hungry.
  • Loose stools (diarrhea).
  • Not able to sleep.
These are not all of the side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, call your child’s doctor. Call your child’s doctor for medical advice about side effects.
You may report side effects to your national health agency.

How is this drug best given?

Give this drug as ordered by your child’s doctor. Read and follow the dosing on the label closely.
  • Give as you have been told, even if your child feels well.
  • To gain the most benefit, do not miss giving your child doses.
  • Give this drug with or without food.
  • Have your child swallow whole. Do not let your child chew, break, or crush.
  • Have your child drink lots of noncaffeine liquids every day unless told to drink less liquid by your child’s doctor.
  • Do not stop giving this drug to your child all of a sudden without calling the doctor. Your child may have a greater risk of seizures. If your child needs to stop this drug, you will want to slowly stop it as told by the doctor.

What do I do if my child misses a dose?

  • Give a missed dose as soon as you think about it.
  • If it is close to the time for your child’s next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your child’s normal time.
  • Do not give 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 child’s symptoms or health problems do not get better or if they become worse, call your child’s doctor.
  • Do not share your child’s drug with others and do not give anyone else’s drug to your child.
  • Keep a list of all your child’s drugs (prescription, natural products, vitamins, OTC) with you. Give this list to your child’s doctor.
  • Talk with your child’s doctor before giving your child 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 child’s 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.

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