Divalproex Sodium

Where is Divalproex Sodium used?

Divalproex Sodium is an anticonvulsant medication used to treat seizure disorders and mental/mood changes such as the manic phase of bipolar disorder. This prescription is used alone or in combination with other medications to treat seizures. This may also be used to prevent migraine headaches. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has already approved this drug.

How does Divalproex Sodium work?

Divalproex Sodium increases brain concentrations of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA), an inhibitory neurotransmitter in the CNS. It may inhibit enzymes that catabolize GABA or block the reuptake of GABA into glia and nerve endings. This drug may also work by destroying repetitive neuronal firing over the inhibition of voltage-sensitive sodium channels.

How is Divalproex Sodium taken?

The dosage is based on your medical condition, age, and response.

This medicine is to be taken by mouth once a day. You may take it with food if a stomach upset occurs. Do not chew or break the extended-release tablets. You should swallow the tablet as a whole. Remember to use it at the same time each day to keep the amount of medication in your blood constant. Do not stop the medication without consulting your doctor. Your condition may worsen if you will suddenly stop the medication.

If this medication is taken for seizures, do not stop taking it without consulting your doctor. Your condition might get worse if the medication is suddenly stopped. Your dosage may need to be slowly reduced. Also, this medicine does not relieve acute migraine headaches. Take other medications as directed by your doctor for acute attacks. Inform your doctor if your condition does not improve.

What are the possible side effects of Divalproex Sodium?

  • Dizziness
  • Vomiting
  • Double vision
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Stomach pain
  • Diarrhea
  • Weakness
  • Sleepiness
  • Blurry vision

Inform your healthcare provider if these side effects get worse or persist.

What are the precautions in taking Divalproex Sodium?

  • Get medical help right away if an allergic reaction occurs.
  • Tell your doctor if you have a medical history of pancreatitis, liver disease, or certain metabolic disorders.
  • This may not be prescribed for pregnant women.
  • You should not share this with others who have the same condition as yours.
  • Avoid doing any activity that requires alertness. This drug may make you feel drowsy or dizzy.
  • This medicine may cause liver failure that may be serious, especially in children under age 2 and in people with liver problems caused by certain genetic disorders.
  • Several people have thoughts about suicide while taking this medicine. Your doctor will need to check your progress at regular visits. Your family must also be attentive to changes in your symptoms or mood.
  • Do not use this medicine to prevent migraine headaches if you are pregnant or you could become pregnant.
  • It may not be safe to breastfeed while using this medication. Ask your doctor about any risks.
  • If you need surgery, tell the surgeon ahead of time that you are using this medicine.
  • You may need frequent blood tests while having this treatment.