stopping keppra cold turkey

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Response and effectiveness

  • Keppra is rapidly and almost completely absorbed after oral administration. In 2020, it reduces the frequency of seizures by approximately half for those who take it.
  • The oral solution and Keppra tablets are equally absorbed.

When taken with Keppra, certain medications may have less of an effect, increase side effects, shorten their duration of action, or have no effect at all. You don’t always have to stop taking one of your medications because of an interaction, but occasionally you do. Speak to your doctor about how drug interactions should be managed.

Common medications that may interact with Keppra include:

  • SSRIs (e.g., escitalopram, fluoxetine) and monoamine oxidase inhibitors (e.g., isocarboxazid, selegiline, or tranylcypromine) are examples of antidepressants.
  • antiepileptics, such as carbamazepine and phenytoin
  • benzodiazepines, such as diazepam, oxazepam, and temazepam
  • brivaracetam
  • buprenorphine
  • clozapine
  • mefloquine
  • methotrexate
  • methotrimeprazine
  • minocycline
  • metoclopramide
  • opioids, such as methadone, oxycodone, morphine, or codeine
  • sedatives, or any drug that makes you drowsy, like muscle relaxants, sleeping pills, or sedating antihistamines
  • tramadol.

Alcohol may enhance the sedative effects of Keppra.

Note that this list is not all-inclusive and includes only common medications that may interact with Keppra. You should refer to the prescribing information for Keppra for a complete list of interactions.

How it works

  • Levetiracetam is marketed under the trade name Keppra and is used to treat specific kinds of seizures.
  • Although the precise mechanism of action of levetiracetam is unknown, experts believe it inhibits excessive nerve firing and slows the spread of seizures by potentially affecting the pathways involving GABA, glycine, and calcium.
  • Keppra is a member of the anticonvulsant (also called antiepileptic) drug class.
  • In conjunction with additional anticonvulsants, it is used to treat partial-onset seizures in adults and children older than one month, generalized tonic-clonic seizures in adults and older children, and myoclonic seizures in adults and older adolescents.
  • Does not require monitoring of blood concentrations.
  • offered as an oral solution, extended-release tablets (Keppra-XR), and oral tablets. Oral medication ought to be recommended for kids weighing up to or less than 20 kg. Children over 20 kg may be given the tablets or oral solution. To measure the oral solution, only calibrated instruments should be utilized—not regular spoons.
  • Usually taken once or twice daily.
  • accessible as a 100 mg/mL oral solution and tablets in dosages of 250, 500, 750, and 1000 mg.
  • Adults 16 years of age and above typically start off with 500 mg twice daily. If necessary, the dosage may be raised every two weeks to a maximum of 1500 mg twice day.
  • Keppra is available as a generic under the name levetiracetam.

The following side effects are more likely to occur if you are between the ages of 18 and 60, do not take any other medications, and do not have any other medical conditions:

  • drowsiness that could impair your ability to operate machinery or drive Avoid alcohol.
  • Relatively common side effects include depression, anxiety, exhaustion, sore throat, headache, nasal congestion, infection, decreased appetite, and pain. There have also been reports of hematologic anomalies, dyskinesia, and severe dermatological reactions, such as toxic epidermal necrolysis [TEN] and Stevens-Johnson syndrome [SJS].
  • When taking Keppra, young children are more likely than adults to experience side effects like decreased appetite, elevated blood pressure, or nasal congestion in addition to behavioral abnormalities (such as hyperactivity or agitation) or psychotic symptoms.
  • Similar to other antiepileptic medications, Keppra may raise the possibility of suicidal thoughts or actions. Monitor for worsening depression or mood changes. Additionally, aggressive, anxious, irritable, and nervous behavior can result from Keppra; advise those using Keppra to keep an eye on their mood.
  • People with kidney disease should take Keppra at a lower dosage.
  • Some people may not be a good fit, such as those who have kidney disease, a history of mental health issues, are pregnant, or are nursing a baby.
  • may interact with some drugs, including sedating antihistamines, propoxyphene, and buprenorphine; however, generally less likely to interact with other drugs than certain other anticonvulsants
  • Blood pressure elevation has been linked to Keppra in children between the ages of one month and four years.
  • Alcohol may make Keppra’s side effects, like sleepiness and dizziness, worse.
  • Withdrawal of Keppra may cause an increase in seizure frequency. Keppra should be tapered off slowly on discontinuation.

Note: People who take other medications, are elderly or younger, have certain medical conditions (such as diabetes, heart disease, liver or kidney problems), or are taking other medications are generally more likely to experience a wider range of side effects. View complete list of side effects.

  • To treat specific types of seizures, Keppra is an anticonvulsant that is used in combination with other medications. Although it might make you sleepy, it is less likely than some other anticonvulsants to interfere with other drugs.
  • Keppra may be given with or without food.
  • Take exactly as directed. Never change the dosage without first consulting your doctor.
  • Whether administering Keppra solution to a child or taking it yourself, make sure to use the supplied dosing syringe or a correctly calibrated liquid measure (available at a pharmacy). Do not use a kitchen teaspoon.
  • Extended-release tablets should be swallowed whole. Do not crush, chew, or break.
  • When the time comes to stop taking Keppra, your doctor will give you advice on how to taper off the medication gradually. Unless your physician has advised you that a quick withdrawal is warranted, don’t just stop it abruptly.
  • If you think that your mood has changed negatively or if you’re considering suicide or self-harm, consult your doctor. Keppra may also cause aggression, anxiety, depression, and irritability.
  • Keppra may impair your ability to drive or operate machinery by causing drowsiness or coordination issues. Avoid alcohol.
  • If you experience a rash or any other concerning side effects while taking Keppra, contact your doctor right away.

When Can I Stop Epilepsy Medication? Part 1


How long does it take to wean off levetiracetam?

If you’re taking levetiracetam for epilepsy, stopping it suddenly can cause seizures. Coming off levetiracetam should be done very slowly and might take a few months.

How long does it take for Keppra to be completely out of your system?

It takes approximately 5.5 x elimination half-life for a medicine to be out of your system. Keppra has a plasma half-life in adults of 7 ± 1 hour and is unaffected by either dose or repeated administration. Therefore it can take about 44 hours (5.5 x 8 hours) for Keppra to be eliminated.

What happens if you stop taking seizure medication?

The risk of seizure recurrence after antiepileptic drugs are discontinued depends on the epilepsy syndrome and a number of other risk factors. Approximately 30–50% of patients will relapse. If seizures recur, the majority of patients regain seizure control when treatment is resumed.

What happens if you take Keppra and don’t need it?

FDA drug safety communication It could be a sign of a side effect that can harm your internal organs and, in severe situations, could lead to death.

When should Keppra be tapered off?

Keppra should be tapered off slowly on discontinuation. Note: In general, seniors or children, people with certain medical conditions (such as liver or kidney problems, heart disease, diabetes, seizures) or people who take other medications are more at risk of developing a wider range of side effects. View complete list of side effects 4.

What happens if you stop a drug Cold Turkey?

Quitting some substances cold turkey can be dangerous to do on your own because of the way the nervous system adapts to certain high-dependency drugs. Abruptly stopping these drugs can cause serious and potentially life-threatening medical issues, including seizures, heart problems, and psychosis.

What are the side effects of Keppra?

In children aged 1 month to 4 years, Keppra has been associated with an increase in blood pressure. Alcohol may worsen the side effects of Keppra such as drowsiness and dizziness. Withdrawal of Keppra may cause an increase in seizure frequency. Keppra should be tapered off slowly on discontinuation.

What happens if you stop taking Lexapro cold turkey?

Lexapro (escitalopram) is an antidepressant typically used to treat major depressive disorder and generalized anxiety disorder. Quitting Lexapro cold turkey can result in withdrawal symptoms. Common Lexapro withdrawal symptoms when suddenly stopping its use include:

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