Read the Medication Guide provided by your pharmacist before you start using oxcarbazepine and each time you get a refill. If you have any questions, consult your doctor or pharmacist.
Take this medication by mouth without food as directed by your doctor, usually once daily. It is very important to take this medication on an empty stomach, at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after food.
Swallow whole. Do not crush or chew extended-release tablets. Doing so can release all of the drug at once, increasing the risk of side effects.
The dosage is based on your medical condition (including pregnancy) and response to treatment.
It is important to take all doses on time to keep the level of medication in your blood constant. Take doses at evenly spaced intervals. Do not skip doses.
Do not suddenly stop taking this drug without your doctor's approval since seizures may reoccur.
Tell your doctor if seizure control worsens.
A small number of people who take anticonvulsants for any condition (such as seizure, bipolar disorder, pain) may experience depression, suicidal thoughts/attempts, or other mental/mood problems. Tell your doctor immediately if you or your family/caregiver notice any unusual/sudden changes in your mood, thoughts, or behavior including signs of depression, suicidal thoughts/attempts, thoughts about harming yourself.
Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: double vision, change in vision, involuntary eye movements, confusion, trouble walking (abnormal gait), uncontrolled muscle movements (tremor).
Get medical help right away if you have any very serious side effects, including: easy bleeding/bruising, persistent sore throat, stomach/abdominal pain, bloody stool, dark urine, change in amount of urine, yellowing of eyes/skin.
Oxcarbazepine may rarely cause very serious (possibly fatal) skin reactions. Some people in certain ethnic groups (including people of Asian/South Asian descent) are at greater risk. Your doctor may order a blood test to measure your risk before prescribing this medication. If the blood test shows you are at greater risk, discuss the risks and benefits of oxcarbazepine and other treatment choices with your doctor. Such skin reactions have developed mostly within the first few months of treatment. Get medical help right away if you develop any of the following symptoms: skin rash/blisters/peeling, itching, or swelling. Ask your doctor or pharmacist for more details.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: fever, rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat/lymph nodes), joint/muscle pain, severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
In the US -
Before taking oxcarbazepine, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to carbamazepine; or to eslicarbazepine; or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: kidney disease.
This drug may make you dizzy or drowsy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do any activity that requires alertness until you are sure you can perform such activities safely. Limit alcoholic beverages.
During pregnancy, this medication should be used only when clearly needed. It may harm an unborn baby. However, since untreated seizures are a serious condition that can harm both a pregnant woman and her unborn baby, do not stop taking this medication unless directed by your doctor. If you are planning pregnancy, become pregnant, or think you may be pregnant, immediately discuss with your doctor the benefits and risks of using this medication during pregnancy. Since birth control pills, patches, implants, and injections may not work if taken with this medication (see also Drug Interactions section), discuss reliable forms of birth control with your doctor.
Some products that may interact with this drug include: calcium channel blockers (such as verapamil, felodipine), cyclosporine, other seizure control medication (such as carbamazepine, phenytoin, phenobarbital, valproic acid), a certain combination HIV medication (elvitegravir/cobicistat/emtricitabine/tenofovir), rilpivirine (another HIV medication).
This medication may decrease the effectiveness of hormonal birth control such as pills, patch, or ring. This could cause pregnancy. Discuss with your doctor or pharmacist if you should use additional reliable birth control methods while using this medication. Also tell your doctor if you have any new spotting or breakthrough bleeding, because these may be signs that your birth control is not working well.
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking other products that cause drowsiness including alcohol, antihistamines (such as cetirizine, diphenhydramine), drugs for sleep or anxiety (such as alprazolam, diazepam, zolpidem), muscle relaxants, and narcotic pain relievers (such as codeine).
Check the labels on all your medicines (such as allergy or cough-and-cold products) because they may contain ingredients that cause drowsiness. Ask your pharmacist about using those products safely.
Oxcarbazepine is very similar to eslicarbazepine. Do not use medications containing eslicarbazepine while using oxcarbazepine.
If overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center.
See also Side Effects section.
It is recommended you wear or carry identification indicating you are using this drug.
Do not share this medication with others.
Laboratory and/or medical tests (such as sodium levels, pregnancy tests) should be performed periodically to monitor your progress or check for side effects. Consult your doctor for more details.
If you miss a dose, use it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.
Store at room temperature away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medications away from children and pets.
MEDICAL ALERT: Your condition can cause complications in a medical emergency. For information about enrolling in MedicAlert, call 1-888-633-4298 (US) or 1-800-668-1507 (Canada).
Information last revised June 2014. Copyright(c) 2014 First Databank, Inc.
With WebMD's Medicine Cabinet, you can check interactions with drugs.Go to medicine cabinet