Medicine & USMLE

Carbamazepine

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Neuro Drugs
  1. Levodopa, Carbidopa
  2. Levetiracetam
  3. Valproic Acid
  4. Anticholinergic Syndrome
  5. Cholinergic Crisis
  6. Benztropine / Trihexyphenidyl
  7. Lidocaine
  8. Pyridostigmine, Neostigmine, Edrophonium
  9. Naltrexone
  10. Pregabalin
  11. Scopolamine
  12. Phenytoin
  13. Ethosuximide
  14. Succinylcholine
  15. Opioids
  16. Memantine
  17. Halothane / Flurane
  18. Donepezil
  19. Propofol
  20. Ergotamine
  21. Triptans
  22. Selegiline / Rasagiline
  23. Entacapone / Tolcapone
  24. Gabapentin
  25. Lamotrigine
  26. Carbamazepine
  27. Ramelteon

Summary

Carbamazepine is a drug most commonly used to treat trigeminal neuralgia, but is also prescribed for treating seizures and bipolar disorder. Severe side effects of carbamazepine include agranulocytosis, which presents as a rapid fall in neutrophil counts that puts the patient at risk for developing life-threatening infections. Carbamazepine can also cause a severe rash known as Stevens-Johnson Syndrome, so any signs of a rash should be reported immediately.

Key Points

  • Carbamazepine (Tegretol)
    • Mechanism
      • Drug class: Anticonvulsants
        • Blocks sodium channels, stabilizing the rapid firing that occurs during seizure activity
    • Clinical Uses
      • Trigeminal Neuralgia
        • Severe facial pain involving the trigeminal nerve (cranial nerve V)
        • Also used for other neuropathic pain syndromes
      • Seizures
        • Tonic-clonic and partial seizures
      • Bipolar Disorder
    • Side Effects and Adverse Reactions
      • Agranulocytosis
        • Black box warning
        • Low white blood cell count
        • Increased risk of infection
        • Report signs of fever or sore throat
        • Patient will require monthly CBC monitoring
      • Steven-Johnson’s Syndrome
        • Black box warning
        • Report signs of rash
      • Food-drug interactions may cause carbamazepine toxicity
        • Avoid grapefruit juice
        • Avoid benzodiazepines