What is Depakote?

Depakote is the trade mark name for a medication known as divalproex sodium. It is used to treat numerous types of seizure disorders. Depending on the patients siezure condition Depakote many be used in combination with other medications. It works by making changes in the body’s chemicals that are involved with seizure, offering the patient relief and a reduction in the number of seizure experienced if any at all.

Depakote may also used to treat manic episodes related to bipolar disorder also known as manic depression. This is done by altering the chemicals in a brain associated with depression. This medication has also shown to be useful in the prevent migraine headaches.

Depakote and Pregnancy

Depakote use in pregnancy can be a danger, however patients taking Depakote and become pregnant are not to stop its use abruptly. Seizures caused by abruptly stopping Depakote can cause harm to the mother and the unborn child. Patients taking Depakote for migraines or manic depressive disorders should not use this medication if they become pregnant.

Depakote Side Effects

Along with the desired effects of Depakote, there can also be unwanted side effects.

Contact your Doctor immediately if you experience any of the following side effects;

  • Black, tarry stools
  • bleeding gums
  • bloating or swelling of the face, arms, hands, lower legs, or feet
  • blood in the urine or stools
  • confusion
  • cough or hoarseness
  • crying
  • tightness in the chest
  • tingling of the hands or feet
  • trembling or shaking of the hands or feet
  • trouble with sleeping
  • unusual bleeding or bruising
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
  • unusual weight gain or loss
  • vomiting
  • wheezing
  • delusions
  • dementia
  • depersonalization
  • diarrhea
  • difficult or labored breathing
  • dysphoria
  • euphoria
  • fever or chills
  • general feeling of discomfort or illness
  • headache
  • joint pain
  • loss of appetite
  • lower back or side pain
  • mental depression
  • muscle aches and pains
  • nausea
  • nervousness
  • painful or difficult urination
  • paranoia

Depakote Use

Depakote is used in the treatment of numerous types of seizure disorders. It works by changing the chemicals in the body to prevent seizures. Patients take Depakote as a way to prevent and treat seizures. It may be used in combination with other medications for the treatment of seizures.

Depakote is also used in the treatment of migraine headaches. Patients who suffer from bipolar disorder may be prescribed Depakote to control and treatment manic depression.

Depakote Dosage and Directions

Depakote is most commonly proscribed as a delayed release tablet that are administered orally.

The recommended initial dose for Mania is 750 mg daily in divided doses. The Depakote dose should be increased as rapidly as possible to achieve the lowest therapeutic dose which produces the desired clinical effect.

Depakote is indicated as monotherapy and adjunctive therapy in complex partial seizures, epilepsy, in adults and pediatric patients down to the age of 10 years, and in simple and complex absence seizures. Initiate therapy at 10 to 15 mg/kg/day and then increased by 5 to 10 mg/kg/week to achieve optimal clinical response.

Depakote is used for prophylaxis of migraine headaches in adults. The recommended starting dose is 250 mg twice daily, some patients receiving doses up to 1,000 mg/day.