WHAT IS DIVALPROEX SODIUM?
Divalproex Sodium, also sold under several trade names such as Depakote ER and Dicorate ER (made by Sun Pharma is an anti convulsant medication that affects certain body chemicals that can cause seizures. It is prescribed for the treatment of various types of seizure disorders. Divalproex Sodium is often used in combination with other anti convulsant or anti seizure medications.
Divalproex Sodium may also be used for treatment not mentioned here.
IMPORTANT INFORMATION ABOUT DIVALPROEX SODIUM:
Do not take Divalproex Sodium anti convulsant or anti seizure medication (Depakote ER, Dicorate ER) if you are allergic to it or any of its ingredients, or if you have liver disease or a urea cycle disorder. Divalproex Sodium is known to cause life threatening liver failure in rare cases, especially in children who are younger than 2 years of age. Children of that age may be even at a higher risk for liver problems if they take more than one seizure medication, if they have a metabolic disorder, or if they have a brain disease causing mental impairment (Huntington disease, Creutzfeldt-Jacob disease, multiple sclerosis, or a brain injury or infection). Divalproex Sodium is also reported to have caused life threatening pancreatitis (inflammation of the pancreas) in rare cases. Pancreatitis can occur all of a sudden and you may see symptoms even after you have been taking this medication for several years.
You must get emergency medical attention if you experience nausea, vomiting, upper stomach pain, loss of appetite, dark urine, low fever, clay colored stools, or jaundice while taking Divalproex sodium. These may be initial symptoms of liver damage or pancreatitis.
You must notify your doctor in advance, for safe usage of Divalproex if you have any of the following conditions: liver disease, a history of head injury, brain disorder, or coma; a bleeding or blood clotting disorder; a family history of a urea cycle disorder or infant deaths with unknown cause; or HIV or CMV (cytomegalovirus) infection. Divalproex Sodium usage may lead to suicidal thoughts. This side effect may require you to undergo regular follow up checks by your doctor. You must notify your doctor about any new or deteriorating symptoms like mood or behavior changes, depression, anxiety, or suicidal or self hurting thoughts during the initial few months of the treatment, or whenever your dose is changed.
Divalproex Sodium is categorized as a pregnancy category D drug which means it can cause birth defects if taken while being pregnant. Do not take this medication without proper medical advice if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. Look for safer anti convulsant medications that may be safer to take during pregnancy. Ask your doctor about this. Also, while using Divalproex Sodium medication, a proper birth control measure is recommended. This medication can pass into breast milk and harm a nursing baby. Therefore if you are breast feeding, do not take Divalproex Sodium medication without first consulting a doctor.
Divalproex Sodium may impact cognitive development in children born to mothers who have used this medication during pregnancy. It has been observed through studies that such children score lower on cognitive tests (reasoning, intelligence, and problem solving) than children whose mothers took other seizure medications during their pregnancy.
BEFORE TAKING DIVALPROEX SODIUM:
Keep in mind all precautions and points listed above before taking Divalproex Sodium anti convulsant medication (Depakote ER, Dicorate ER) and discuss them with your doctor for more clarifications.
HOW SHOULD I TAKE DIVALPROEX SODIUM?
Take Divalproex Sodium anti convulsant medication (Depakote ER, Dicorate ER) strictly according to your doctor’s direction or according to the instructions on the medication label. Do not alter the dosage unless your doctor advises you to do so.
Avoid crushing, breaking, or chewing a Divalproex extended release (ER) tablet as doing so may lead to too much of the medicine to be release at once. Instead swallow it whole. You must ensure to drink plenty of fluids while taking this medication. Always store Divalproex Sodium anti convulsant medication in a cool and dry place.
WHAT IF I MISS A DOSE?
If you miss a dose of Divalproex Sodium, take it as soon as you remember. Don’t take the missed dose if the time to take the next dose is almost up. Taking multiple doses near to each other can lead to excess medication in your body which can be harmful.
WHAT IF I OVERDOSE?
In case of an overdose of Divalproex Sodium, get emergency medical attention or call the Doctor immetiately. Overdose may lead to symptoms like sleepiness, drowsiness, shortness of breath, weak pulse, or unconsciousness.
THINGS AND ACTIVITIES TO AVOID WHILE TAKING DIVALPROEX SODIUM:
Divalproex Sodium may impact your thinking capabilities and reflexes. So take extra care while indulging in activities that require a high degree of mental awareness and thinking such as driving. Alcohol is not recommended while taking Divalproex Sodium.
SIDE EFFECTS OF DICORATE ER 500MG:
• Red or purple spots on your skin, bruising, bleeding from your mouth, teeth or nose (low blood count)|
• Feeling tired and changes in mental status
• Low body temperature (hypothermia)
• Fever, skin rash, hives, sores in your mouth, blistering and peeling of your skin, swelling of your lymph nodes, swelling of your face, eyes, lips, tongue, or throat, trouble swallowing or breathing.
• Drowsiness or sleepiness (elderly)
• Nausea, vomiting
• Stomach pain
• Blurry vision and double vision
• Increased appetite, loss of appetite
• Weight gain
• Hair loss
• Problems with walking or coordination
DIVALPROEX SODIUM DOSING INFORMATION:
Divalproex Sodium dosage may depend on a range of factors like age, sex, drug allergies, or seriousness of the condition among several other factors. Your dosage will be fixed by your doctor after examining you properly. Remember to obey your doctor strictly for best results.
INTERACTION WITH OTHER MEDICATIONS:
Some sleep inducing medications like cold or cough medicines, narcotic pain killers, sleeping pills, anti depressants or muscle relaxers can add to the sleepiness caused due to Divalproex Sodium. Let your doctor know in advance if you use any of these medicines. Also inform your doctor if you use any of these potentially interacting (with Divalproex Sodium) medications: Topiramate, a blood thinner such as warfarin, tolbutamide, aspirin or acetaminophen, clozapine, diazepam, ethosuximide, meropenem, or rifampin.
The list of drugs mentioned here in this guide is not a complete list of interacting medications (with Divalproex Sodium). There may be others as well. Share the list of all present medications which you may be using with your doctor. Never start a new medication on your own.