Medicine & USMLE

Levetiracetam

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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. Memantine
  16. Donepezil
  17. Halothane / Flurane
  18. Propofol
  19. Ergotamine
  20. Triptans
  21. Selegiline / Rasagiline
  22. Entacapone / Tolcapone
  23. Gabapentin
  24. Lamotrigine
  25. Carbamazepine
  26. Ramelteon

Summary

Levetiracetam is a medication that treats seizures by depressing the central nervous system. This may cause drowsiness, which is an expected side effect that resolves after taking the drug for 4 - 6 weeks. A more severe side effect is a rash that can evolve into the life-threatening Stevens-Johnson syndrome, so any sign of a rash should be reported to the physician. Finally, levetiracetam has been shown to increase suicidal ideation, so keep a close eye on the patient’s mood and anxiety levels.

Key Points

  • Levetiracetam (Keppra)
    • Mechanism
      • Drug class: Anticonvulsant/Antiseizure
        • Depresses the CNS
    • Clinical Uses
      • Seizures
        • Tonic-clonic, partial, and myoclonic seizures
        • Preferred antiepileptic medication as it has minimal side effects and drug interactions compared to other antiseizure drugs
    • Side Effects and Adverse Reactions
      • Sedation, drowsiness, fatigue
        • A common side effect as a result of depressing the CNS that usually resolves within 4-6 weeks
        • Do not take with other CNS depressant medications or alcohol
      • Stevens-Johnson Syndrome
        • Report rash immediately
      • Increased suicidal ideation
        • Report any changes in mood or anxiety
      • Renal toxicity