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Vigabatrin

Drug Class: Commonly Known As: Category:
Anticonvulsant Sabril® Adult, Children

Vigabatrin - What is it for

Vigabatrin is used alone to control West syndrome (infantile spasms) and other seizures (in combination).

Vigabatrin - Side Effects, Precautions, and Contraindications

What side effects can Vigabatrin cause?

Generally, the common side effects tend to occur at the beginning of treatment. Such side effects may include:

  • Mild drowsiness, dizziness, headache, confusion, lack of coordination, nervousness, insomnia and concentration difficulties are the most frequently reported side-effects. Be careful when giving any over-the-counter medicines to your child. Medicines for allergy or cold symptoms can add on to the drowsiness. Be sure to supervise your child when he/she is involved in activities such as cycling or swimming.
  • Behaviour changes (e.g. irritability, anxiety).
  • Changes in eyesight e.g. reduced field of vision, double vision, abnormal colour perception.
  • Abdominal pain, increased appetite and weight, constipation, diarrhea, nausea, vomiting
  • Skin rash, is sometimes reported
  • Back and/or joint pain, muscle weakness, numbness in the hands and feet (“pins and needles” sensation)

Inform your doctor if any of the above side-effects lasts more than a few days or become severe and bothersome.

Rare but serious side-effects may manifest as the following symptoms. Contact your doctor as soon as possible, if you notice any of the following:

  • Sudden worsening of vision
  • Worsening of behaviour changes

Inform your doctor if you notice any other unusual symptoms in your child. Always discuss with your doctor or pharmacist if your child has any problems or difficulties during or after taking vigabatrin.

Before taking Vigabatrin, what precautions must I follow?

Check with your doctor or pharmacist if you wish to give any other medications, supplements or herbal products to your child.

If your child is consulting with a different doctor, inform him/her that your child is currently taking vigabatrin before he/she prescribes any other medication.

What food or medicine must I avoid when I take Vigabatrin?

Vigabatrin - Dosage and How to Use

How should Vigabatrin be used?

Vigabatrin is usually taken 2 times a day. The doctor may start your child on a low dose and subsequently slowly increase the dose. Follow the instructions on the label carefully and feel free to clarify with your pharmacist or doctor if you are unsure.

Do not take this medication more often than directed and do not stop unless instructed specifically by your doctor. Stopping this medication too rapidly can increase the risk of seizures or fits.

Do not change brands or dosage forms without informing your doctor.​

Swallow the tablets with a glass of water. If your child is unable to swallow the tablet, you may crush it add it to small amount of food (i.e. yogurt, ice-cream, syrup) before giving it to your child. Vigabatrin can be taken with or without food.

What should I do if I miss a dose?

Give your child the dose as soon as you remember and then continue to take it as you normally give. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the dose you missed and give the next dose at the usual time.

Do not double or increase the dose.

If your child has missed more than two doses or you are not sure of what to do, consult your doctor or pharmacist.

If your child has less than two weeks supply of medication, please ensure that you have made an appointment with your child’s neurologist or made arrangements to collect more medication.

What should I do if I overdose?

Vigabatrin - Handling and Storage

How should I handle Vigabatrin safely?

How should I store Vigabatrin?

Keep away from children;#Keep in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight;#Store at room temperature;#

How should I dispose of Vigabatrin safely?

Vigabatrin - Additional Information

Vigabatrin may cause vision problems in adults. However, only 1 out of 16 children on vigabatrin had peripheral vision loss and usually with prolonged use at large doses. Do consult your doctor if you are concerned.

  • Updated on Monday, October 2, 2017
  • This article is contributed by Department of Pharmacy KK Women's and Children's Hospital

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