Depakene (Valproic acid) for Epilepsy | MyEpilepsyTeam

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The Depakene brand name has been discontinued in the U.S. Generic alternatives may be available.

Overview Depakene is a prescription drug that was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat seizures in adults and children over 2 years old. Depakene is also referred to by its drug name, valproate or valproic acid. Another drug, Depakote, metabolizes into valproate within the body. Therefore, the two drugs are very similar in their effects. Depakene can help control absence seizures, tonic-clonic seizures, and related types of seizures. Depakene is an acidic chemical compound used as an anticonvulsant and mood stabilizer. Depakene is believed to work by changing the balance of neurotransmitters in the brain.

How do I take it?

Depakene is taken orally as a tablet, capsule, or liquid one or more times a day. Your doctor may take regular blood tests while you are on Depakene in order to monitor blood levels of the medication. Your doctor will likely begin you on a very low dose of Depakene and increase the dosage gradually in order to avoid side effects. Do not stop taking Depakene suddenly. If you decide to stop taking Depakene, consult your physician for a plan to taper off gradually. Always follow your doctor’s instructions exactly when taking Depakene.

Side effects

Common side effects of Depakene are abdominal pain, hair loss, blurred vision, amnesia, loss of appetite, weakness, abnormal muscle contractions, upper respiratory tract infections, constipation, depression, diarrhea, dizziness, indigestion, trouble breathing, emotional and cognitive changes, fever, flu syndrome, headache, increased appetite, infection, insomnia, nausea, nervousness, peripheral edema, drowsiness, decreased blood cell counts, ringing in the ears, tremor, vomiting, and weight changes. Rare but serious side effects of Depakene can include liver damage, hypothermia, drowsiness, fetal birth defects, suicidal thoughts, bleeding disorders, and pancreatitis. Notify your doctor if side effects worsen, or if partial tablets appear in stools while taking Depakene. Call your doctor if you experience abdominal pain, vomiting, and lack of appetite, which can be signs of pancreatitis. Also, contact your physician if you notice chest pain, easy bruising or bleeding, swelling of your hands or feet, yellowing of the eyes or skin, sudden confusion, or suicidal thoughts while taking Depakene.

For more information about this treatment, visit:

Depakene — RxList

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