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Epilepsy

Will I be able to drink with Lamictal

07/07/2009

Question:

Hi, and sorry for may English i will try to be clear enough, Thank you for your help!

I have seizures and epilepsy from 15 years old. After changing several drugs, my doctor was prescription me Topamax. I haven`t any seizures 9 years. I was drinking with Topamax a lot and I had normal life. I drinked when I was with friends almost 1(one) bottle Vodka or Whiskey. My dose was 50mg Topax daily. Now I`m 31 years old. In may 2009 year my doctor changed Topamax with Lamictal and after 1(one) month and 1 night hard drinking I had seizure. I am scared that i will receive another seizure if I drink. My life was normal and I be able to drink a lot. Now I am on 300mg Lamictal and I`m scared about drinking, I thought that if I drink more than 500g vodka or whiskey I will receive a seizure. I know that when I had seizure in June 2009 year accumulated quantity of Lamictal was LOW. I know that i passed from Topamax to Lamictal. But my Question is : After I accumulated Lamictal(after 1-2-3 months)will I be able to drink like before when I was with Topamax. Thank you very much for answer!

Answer:

There are two issues that need to be considered when the question of alcohol use and epilepsy comes up. One is the effect that alcohol could have on the medicines used to control seizures. Alcohol can potentially affect how some seizure medications are metabolized which may result in lower blood levels and breakthrough seizures. The other issue is whether the alcohol itself will cause seizures. Large amounts of alcohol are thought to raise the risk of seizures and may even cause them. Some individuals can have one alcoholic drink without causing problems. Large amounts of alcohol (binge drinking) or frequent use (more than a few times per week) may cause problems.

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Response by:

David M Ficker, MD David M Ficker, MD
Associate Professor
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati