Vigabatrin

Adult Medication

Brand Names: US

Sabril

Brand Names: Canada

Sabril

Warning

  • This drug may cause eyesight problems like loss of eyesight. People taking this drug do not lose all of their eyesight but loss of eyesight can be very bad. Eyesight problems include not being able to see to the side when looking straight ahead and only being able to see straight ahead. Blurred eyesight may also happen. If these eyesight problems happen, they will not get better. Eyesight problems may happen within weeks of starting this drug or sooner, or at any time while taking it, even after months or years. Talk with the doctor.
  • Call your doctor right away if you do not see things as well as before taking this drug. Call your doctor right away if you start to trip, bump into things, or are more clumsy than normal. Call your doctor right away if people surprise you or if things that come in front of you seem to come out of nowhere.
  • You will need to have your eyesight checked before starting this drug, while taking it, and for some time after you stop taking it. Talk with your doctor.
  • If you have eyesight problems like loss of eyesight, are at risk for loss of eyesight, or are taking drugs that may cause eye problems, talk with your doctor.
  • You may only get this drug through a special program. 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 infantile spasms.

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

  • If you have an allergy to vigabatrin 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.
  • If you are breast-feeding or plan to breast-feed.
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?

For all patients taking this drug:

  • Tell all of your health care providers that you take this drug. This includes your doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and dentists.
  • Avoid driving and doing other tasks or actions that call for you to be alert or have clear eyesight until you see how this drug affects you.
  • Do not stop taking this drug all of a sudden without calling your doctor. You may have a greater risk of seizures. If you need to stop this drug, you will want to slowly stop it as ordered by your doctor.
  • This drug may affect certain lab tests. Tell all of your health care providers and lab workers that you take this drug.
  • Nerve problems like burning, numbness, or tingling feelings that are not normal have happened with this drug. It is not known if these nerve problems will go away if this drug is stopped. Talk with the doctor.
  • Talk with your doctor before you drink alcohol or use other drugs and natural products that slow your actions.
  • If you are 65 or older, use this drug with care. You could have more side effects.
  • 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.

Children:

  • If your child’s weight changes, talk with the doctor. The dose of this drug may need to be changed.
  • This drug may cause MRI changes that are not normal in infants. This has not been seen in older children or adults. It is not known if these changes are harmful. Talk with the doctor.

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.
  • A burning, numbness, or tingling feeling that is not normal.
  • Chest pain.
  • Change in balance.
  • Very bad dizziness or passing out.
  • Feeling confused.
  • Fever.
  • Feeling very tired or weak.
  • If seizures are worse or not the same after starting this drug.
  • Not able to control eye movements.
  • Very bad muscle pain or weakness.
  • Swelling.
  • Pain when passing urine.
  • Passing urine more often.
  • A big weight gain.
  • Memory problems or loss.
  • Trouble walking.
  • 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. 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 doctor or get medical help if any of these side effects or any other side effects bother you or do not go away:
  • Feeling sleepy.
  • Dizziness.
  • Hard stools (constipation).
  • Belly pain.
  • Cough.
  • Nose and throat irritation.
  • Stuffy nose.
  • Headache.
  • Feeling tired or weak.
  • Not able to sleep.
  • Muscle or joint pain.
  • Loose stools (diarrhea).
  • Upset stomach or throwing up.
  • Feeling more or less hungry.
  • Weight gain.
  • Tooth pain.
  • Back pain.
  • Twitching.
  • Shakiness.
  • Flu-like signs.
  • Not able to focus.
  • Feeling nervous and excitable.
  • Bad dreams.
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 all information given to you. Follow all instructions closely.

All products:

  • Take with or without food.
  • Ask your doctor what to do if you are not able to take the full dose. Ask your doctor what to do if you throw up after taking this drug.
  • To gain the most benefit, do not miss doses.
  • Keep taking this drug as you have been told by your doctor or other health care provider, even if you feel well.

Powder for solution:

  • Mix with water as told before you take this drug. Do not swallow the dry powder.
  • Follow how to use as you have been told by the doctor or read the package insert.
  • Be sure you know how many packets to use.
  • Melt each packet in 2 teaspoons (10 mL) of water.
  • After mixing, measure the liquid dose carefully. Use the measuring device that comes with this drug.
  • Swallow the mixture right away. Do not store for use at a later time.
  • Do not use if the solution is cloudy or has particles.
  • Do not use if solution changes color.
  • Throw away any part not used after use.

What do I do if I miss a dose?

  • Call your doctor to find out what to do.

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

  • Store in the original container at room temperature.
  • Store in a dry place. Do not store in a bathroom.
  • Keep all drugs in a safe place. 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, nurse, 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.

Last Reviewed Date

2016-06-24

Copyright

© 2016 Wolters Kluwer Clinical Drug Information, Inc. and its affiliates and/or licensors. All rights reserved.