Category: Anticonvulsant & Neurological Disorders
|Drug Class: What is Tegretol and why is it prescribed?
|Generic Tegretol (carbamazepine) can help with seizure (convulsion) control in certain types of epilepsy.
Generic Tegretol also treats nerve-related pain such as trigeminal neuralgia (severe pain in the jaws), and pain in the tongue and throat.
In addition, some doctors use Generic Tegretol to treat alcohol withdrawal, cocaine addiction, and emotional disorders such as depression and abnormally aggressive behavior. Generic Tegretol is also used to treat migraine headache and \"restless legs.\"
|Tegretol Mechanism: How does Tegretol work?
|Generic Tegretol contains the active ingredient carbamazepine, which is a medicine that is mainly used to treat epilepsy. Generic Tegretol works by stabilizing electrical activity in the brain.
The brain and nerves are made up of many nerve cells that communicate with each other through electrical signals. These signals must be carefully regulated for the brain and nerves to function properly. When abnormally rapid and repetitive electrical signals are released in the brain, the brain becomes over-stimulated and normal function is disturbed. This results in fits or seizures.
Generic Tegretol prevents epileptic fits by preventing the excessive electrical activity in the brain. It is thought to achieve this by preventing sodium from entering nerve cells when they begin to fire rapid and repetitive electrical signals. A build up of sodium in the nerve cells is necessary for the electrical signal to build up and be passed on to other nerve cells. As Generic Tegretol prevents this, it helps stabilize the electrical activity in the brain.
Preventing the build-up of the electrical signal also prevents the release of a neurotransmitter called glutamate from the nerve cells in the brain. Glutamate is a neurotransmitter that acts as a natural \'nerve-exciting\' agent. It is thought to play a key role in causing epileptic seizures. Reducing the release of glutamate from the nerve cells in the brain is another way in which Generic Tegretol is thought to help stabilize the electrical activity in the brain and prevent epileptic fits.
As Generic Tegretol stabilizes electrical nerve activity, Generic Tegretol is also used to treat a condition called trigeminal neuralgia, in which the facial nerves spontaneously send messages of pain to the brain. Generic Tegretol prevents the nerve signals being sent inappropriately and relieves the pain of this condition.
|Tegretol Dosage: How should you take Tegretol
|Generic Tegretol should only be taken with meals, never on an empty stomach.
Generic Tegretol CR tablets must be swallowed whole: do not crush or chew them and do not take tablets that have been damaged.
The usual dose of Generic Tegretol for adults and children over 12 years of age is 200 milligrams (1 tablet or 2 chewable or extended-release tablets) taken twice daily. Your doctor may increase the dose at weekly intervals by adding 200-milligram doses twice a day for Generic Tegretol-CR or 3 or 4 times per day for the other forms. Dosage should generally not exceed 1,000 milligrams daily in children 12 to 15 years old and 1,200 milligrams daily for adults and children over 15. The usual daily maintenance dosage range is 800 to 1,200 milligrams.
The usual dose of Generic Tegretol is 100 milligrams (1 chewable or extended-release tablet). Your doctor may increase this dose using increments of 100 milligrams every 12 hours or one-half teaspoonful 4 times daily only as needed to achieve freedom from pain. Doses should not exceed 1,200 milligrams daily and are usually in the range of 400 to 800 milligrams a day for maintenance.
The usual dose of Generic Tegretol for children 6 to 12 years old is 100 milligrams twice daily or one-half teaspoon 4 times a day. Your doctor may increase the dose at weekly intervals by adding 100 milligrams twice a day for Generic Tegretol-CR, 3 or 4 times a day for the other forms. Total daily dosage should generally not exceed 1,000 milligrams. The usual daily dosage range for maintenance is 400 to 800 milligrams.
The usual daily starting dose of Generic Tegretol for children under 6 years of age is 10 to 20 milligrams per 2.2 pounds of body weight. The total daily dose is divided into smaller doses taken 2 or 3 times a day for tablets or 4 times a day for suspension. Daily dosage should not exceed 35 milligrams per 2.2 pounds.
To help determine the ideal dosage, your doctor may decide to periodically check the level of Generic Tegretol in your blood.
If you miss a Generic Tegretol dose
If you miss a dose of Generic Tegretol, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses of Generic Tegretol.
Generic Tegretol Overdose
Generic Tegretol taken in excess can lead to serious consequences. Seek medical emergency immediately.
Symptoms of Generic Tegretol overdose include
- inability to urinate,
- involuntary rapid eye movements,
- irregular or reduced breathing,
- absence or low production of urine,
- lack of coordination,
- low or high blood pressure,
- muscular twitching,
- pupil dilation,
- rapid heartbeat,
- severe muscle spasm,
- writhing movements
Generic Tegretol Storage instructions
Keep Generic Tegretol out of reach of children in a container that small children cannot open.
Store Generic Tegretol at room temperature below 30 degrees C (86 degrees F). Keep container tightly closed. Protect from moisture. Throw away any unused Generic Tegretol after the expiration date.
Generic Tegretol Preparations:
Tablet – 100 mg, 200 mg, 100 mg CR, 200 mg CR,
Chewable Tablet –100 mg
Generic Tegretol suppositories are also available.
|Possible food and drug interactions when taking Tegretol
| Generic Tegretol can interact with many medicines and the dose of Generic Tegretol or the interacting medicine may need to be altered as a result. It is important to tell your doctor what medicines you are taking, including herbal medicines and those bought without a prescription, before you start Generic Tegretol. Likewise, once you are taking Generic Tegretol it is important to check with your doctor or pharmacist before you start taking any new medicines, or stop taking any existing medicines.
Generic Tegretol blood levels may be increased by:
- azole antifungals, eg fluconazole, ketoconazole
- macrolide antibiotics, eg erythromycin, clarithromycin
- protease inhibitors (HIV), eg ritonavir
Sodium valproate and lamotrigine may increase the rate that Generic Tegretol is converted to another active form in the body. This can result in an increase in Generic Tegretol side effects.
Generic Tegretol blood levels may be decreased by:
- chemotherapy medicines, eg cisplatin, doxorubicin
- sodium valproate
- St John’s wort.
Generic Tegretol may decrease the blood levels and effectiveness of the following:
- benzodiazepines, eg alprazolam, clonazepam, diazepam, midazolam
- calcium channel blockers, eg felodipine, nimodipine
- corticosteroids, eg dexamethasone, prednisolone
- protease inhibitors (HIV), eg indinavir, saquinavir
- tricyclic antidepressants such as imipramine
- thyroid hormones
- sodium valproate
Generic Tegretol may raise or lower blood levels of phenytoin.
Generic Tegretol should not be taken with monoamine oxidase inhibitor antidepressants (MAOIs). At least two weeks should pass after stopping an MAOI before starting Generic Tegretol.
There may be a decrease in blood sodium levels if Generic Tegretol is taken with diuretics such as frusemide and hydrochlorothiazide.
If Generic Tegretol is taken with lithium or haloperidol there may be an increase in brain and nervous system side effects, e.g. confusion, drowsiness, weakness, lethargy and tremor.
If Generic Tegretol is taken with isoniazid there may be an increased risk of liver disorders.
|Special information on Tegretol
Most Important Fact about Generic Tegretol
Generic Tegretol may rarely cause a decrease in the normal amounts of blood cells in the blood. For this reason you should consult your doctor immediately if you experience any of the following symptoms:
- unexplained bruising or bleeding,
- purple spots,
- sore throat,
- mouth ulcers,
- high temperature (fever),
- feeling tired or general illness
Generic Tegretol precautions if you are pregnant or breastfeeding
It is very important for women with epilepsy to talk to the doctor responsible for their epilepsy treatment before becoming pregnant. Generic Tegretol has been associated with an increased risk of developmental disorders and malformations in the baby. However, stopping Generic Tegretol treatment during pregnancy runs the risk of the mother having seizures, which can harm both the mother and the foetus. This risk may be higher than that from continuing Generic Tegretol. It is important that all the risks and benefits of treatment are weighed up. Seek medical advice from your doctor.
Generic Tegretol passes into breast milk in small amounts. The benefits of breastfeeding should be weighed against any possible risks to the infant. Breast-fed infants should be observed for possible adverse reactions, such as excessive drowsiness, skin rashes or poor weight gain. Seek medical advice.
Special warnings about Generic Tegretol
Do not stop taking Generic Tegretol suddenly without consulting your doctor or pharmacist. There exists the strong possibility of continuous epileptic attacks without return to consciousness, leading to possible severe brain damage and death.
Generic Tegretol may cause fatigue and dizziness. You should take care when performing potentially hazardous activities, such as driving or operating machinery, until you know how Generic Tegretol affects you and are sure you can perform such activities safely.
Generic Tegretol decreases the blood levels of hormonal contraceptives containing estrogen and/or progesterone, which may make the contraceptive ineffective or result in breakthrough bleeding. Women taking Generic Tegretol who require contraception should be prescribed a contraceptive containing at least 50 micrograms of estrogen, or use non-hormonal methods of contraception, such as condoms.
If you have a history of heart, liver, or kidney damage, an adverse blood reaction to any drug, glaucoma, or serious reactions to other drugs, you should discuss this history thoroughly with your doctor before taking Generic Tegretol.
Older adults, especially, can become confused or agitated when taking Generic Tegretol.
The coating of the Generic Tegretol-CR tablet is not absorbed and passes through your body intact. If you notice it in your stool, it is not a cause for alarm.
|Tegretol side effects
|Why Generic Tegretol should not be prescribed?
Generic Tegretol should not be used if you are allergic to any of its ingredients. Please inform your doctor or pharmacist if you have previously experienced such an allergy.
If you feel you have experienced an allergic reaction, stop using Generic Tegretol and inform your doctor or pharmacist immediately.
Generic Tegretol should not be prescribed for patients with history of decreased blood cell production by the bone marrow (bone marrow depression)
Possible Generic Tegretol Side effects
More common side effects of Generic Tegretol may include:
- mood changes, nervousness, or hostility
- unusual tiredness or weakness
- clumsiness or unsteadiness
- diarrhea or constipation
- mild dizziness or drowsiness
- increased sensitivity to the sun
- increased sweating
Less common side effects of Generic Tegretol may include:
- blurred or double vision, uncontrollable eye movements
- chest pain or tightness
- dark yellow or brown urine
- difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
- fainting spells
- fast or irregular heartbeat (palpitations)
- fever or chills, sore throat
- increased thirst
- mouth ulcers
- pain or difficulty passing urine
- redness, blistering, peeling or loosening of the skin, including inside the mouth
- ringing in the ears
- seizures (convulsions)
- shortness of breath, wheezing
- skin rash, hives, itching
- sore throat
- stomach pain
- swollen joints or muscle/joint aches and pains
- unusual bleeding or bruising
- unusual swelling
- yellowing of the eyes or skin
[ Back ]