It is easy to understand people's reasons for wanting to stop
medicine. Some reasons are side effects and drug toxicity, the cost and inconvenience of
medicine, and, for women who want to have children, the higher risk of birth
defects associated with some
If you have not had a seizure in several years, you may want to
discuss with your doctor the possibility of stopping treatment with medicine.
You and your doctor will need to weigh the benefits of stopping treatment
against the risk that your seizures may return.
To diagnose epilepsy, your doctor will take a detailed medical history (including a family history of seizures), gather information about your behavior before, during, and after the episode, and do a physical exam. Make sure someone who witnessed the seizure goes to the doctor with you.
An electroencephalogram (EEG) -- a brain wave study -- can reveal abnormal brain waves characteristic of epilepsy. Keeping someone awake for 24 hours (sleep deprivation) increases the chances of finding abnormalities...
In most cases, medicine is reduced slowly over 2 to 6 months. Talk with
your doctor about whether you should drive—and if not, for how
long—after you begin withdrawing the medicine. You are at highest risk for a
seizure during this time. Most relapses tend to happen in the first year after
you stop taking medicine, if they are going to happen at all.
Do not reduce your medicine dosage or stop taking your medicine without first consulting your doctor. Even if you have not
had a seizure in several years while on medicine, stopping treatment may not be
a good option for you.
In this article
This information is produced and provided by the National
Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National
Institute via the Internet web site at http://
.gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.
WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise
March 12, 2014
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor.
Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this