Generic Name: Carbamazepine (kar-ba-MAZ-e-peen)

Drug Class: Anticonvulsant


Drug Uses

This medicine is used in patients to treat and prevent seizures. Your doctor may prescribe this medicine for other conditions as well, such as pain relief or use in bipolar disease.

General Information

This information is for educational purposes only. Not every known side effect, adverse effect, or drug interaction is in this database. If you have questions about your medicines, talk to your health care provider.

How it Works

The way this drug works is not fully understood. It helps prevent seizures by slowing down the repeated firing of nerves. It helps in pain relief by blocking nerve impulses that cause pain.

How to Take It

Follow the directions for using this medicine provided by your doctor. Take this medicine with food or milk. Avoid drinking grapefruit juice or eating grapefruits while taking this medicine. Take this medicine regularly, do not skip doses.

Possible Side Effects

    • Side effects that this medicine may cause include:
      • drowsiness
      • dizziness
      • blurred vision
      • unsteadiness
      • nausea
      • or vomiting. If these side effects are bothersome
      • check with your health care provider.

    • Check with your doctor as soon as possible if you experience any of the following:
      • stomach pain
      • skin rash
      • unusual bleeding or bruising
      • swelling of ankles or fingers
      • fever
      • chills
      • sore throat
      • or mouth sores.

    • If you experience other bothersome side effects, contact your health care provider.


    • Do NOT stop taking this medicine without first checking with your doctor.

    • Before you have any medical or dental appointments or surgery, tell your doctor or dentist that you are taking this medicine.

    • This medicine can cause dizziness or drowsiness.

    • The side effects may affect your ability to operate a motor vehicle safely.

    • This medicine may cause increased sensitivity to the sun. Avoid exposure to the sun, sunlamps, or tanning booths until you know how you react to this medicine. Use sunscreen or protective clothing if you must be outside for a prolonged period.


    • Seek medical attention immediately. For non emergencies, contact your local or regional poison control center at 1-800-222-1222.

Drug Interactions

    • For diabetics; this medicine may cause false test results with some urine glucose tests. Check with your doctor before adjusting the dose of your diabetes medicine or changing your diet.

    • Before taking any new prescription or over-the-counter medicine, talk to your doctor or pharmacist. Other medicine can affect the way carbamazepine works in the body.

Missed Dose

Take your next dose as soon as you remember. If it is time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular schedule. Do not double doses.


Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture (not in the bathroom). Throw away any medication that is outdated or no longer needed.


Carbamazepine has shown to cause harm to the human fetus. If you want to become pregnant, talk with your doctor about the benefits and risks of using this medicine during pregnancy. This medicine is excreted in breast milk. If you are or will be breast-feeding while you are taking this medicine, check with your doctor or pharmacist to discuss the risks to your baby.

More Information

For more information, talk to your doctor, pharmacist or health care provider.

Copyright © 2004 PharmClips, Inc. All rights reserved. Information expires March 1, 2005. Published March 1, 2004.

This information is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, drug interactions, or adverse effects. This is general information and should not in any event be construed as specific instructions for individual patients. The publisher does not accept any responsibility for the accuracy of the information or the consequences arising from the application, use, or misuse of any of the information contained herein, including any injury and/or damage to any person or property as a matter of product liability, negligence, or otherwise. No warranty, expressed or implied, is made in regard to the contents of this material. The reader is advised to check with their health care provider before making any changes in their drug regimen.

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