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Description

What is Gabitril?

Gabitril (Tiagabine) is an anti-epileptic (or anticonvulsant) medication and is used in combination with other medications to treat focal seizures in people over the age of 12. Gabitril is available in 5mg, 10mg and 15mg strength.

How does Gabitril work?

Tiagabine works to treat focal seizures by increasing the amount of natural chemicals which then reduce the spread of seizure activity within your brain. Gabitril does not cure epilepsy and will only work to control seizures for as long as you continue to take it.

Always read the patient information and instructions carefully before using this medication.

  • Gabitril should be taken orally with food.
  • Typically, Gabitril is prescribed to be taken once daily during the initial week of treatment and then may be increased by your doctor to 2-4 times daily.
  • Tiagabine is not usually used alone. You should not stop taking other anti-seizure medications unless your doctor tells you to.
  • Your Gabitril dosage is based on factors including your medical condition, response to treatment and other medications used. Do not change or increase your Gabitril dosage unless advised to by a doctor.
  • Tiagabine is most effective when used regularly. Try to use this medication at the same time each day.
  • Do not stop taking this medication without consulting with a doctor as seizures may become worse when this drug is stopped suddenly. If you stop taking this medication for multiple days, you may need to restart with a lower dose. Ask your doctor for advice.

Cautions

Make sure to tell your doctor and pharmacist:

  • If you have any drug allergies.
  • Which other prescription and non-prescription medications you currently take.
  • Your medical history especially of liver disease, mental or mood disorders or seizures that do not stop.
  • If you are breast feeding.
  • If you are using marijuana.

Also be aware that:

  • Gabitril may make you dizzy or drowsy. Do not drive, operate machinery or do any other activity requiring alertness until you can do it safely.
  • You should limit your alcoholic beverages while taking this medication.
  • Older adults may be more sensitive to the side effects of this drug.
  • This medication should only be used when clearly needed during pregnancy.

Side Effects

Common Gabitril side effects may include but are not limited to:

  • Tiredness, drowsiness or lack of energy.
  • Dizziness, tremors or nervousness.
  • Nausea, stomach pain.
  • Feeling irritable or trouble concentrating.

Contact your doctor if you experience any of the following Tiagabine side effects:

  • New or worsened seizures.
  • Confusion or extreme weakness.
  • Feeling lightheaded or as if you might pass out.
  • Problems with your vision.
  • Signs of a severe skin reaction such as: Fever; Sore throat; Burning in your eyes; Skin pain followed by a red or purple skin rash that spreads especially to the face or upper body and causes blistering or peeling.

FAQs

Q: What should I avoid while taking Gabitril?

A: You should limit your alcohol intake while taking Gabitril as drinking alcohol with this medication may cause side effects.

Q: What should I do if I miss a dose of Gabitril?

A: If you miss a dose of Gabitril, take it as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for the next scheduled dose, skip your missed dose. Do not take a double dose to make up for a missed dose.

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