Phenytoin

How It Works:

Phenytoin belongs to a class of medication called anti-convulsants. It acts by slowing down the abnormal electrical activity of the brain that causes seizures.

Side Effects:

sores on skin or mouth ulcers/sores, confusion or memory problems, sensitivity to light, nausea, inflammation of tendons, Stevens-Johnson syndrome, sores around eyes, vomiting, slurred speech, lack of energy, depression, bruising or bleeding, severe stomach pain, lack of coordination or jerky movements, shedding of skin, constipation, swelling in the glands, rash, Common: Drowsiness, softening of bones and joint pain, fever or jaundice like symptoms, headache or sleep problems.Uncommon: Suicidal thoughts, anemia, nervousness, increased glucose level.

Used For:

Phenytoin is used to control seizures (fits) in epilepsy patients. It is also used to prevent and treat seizures (fits) in patients who are having surgery in the brain or nervous system.

Instructions:

  • Do not take phenytoin if you are allergic to phenytoin or any of its other ingredient.
  • Do not drive or operate machinery immediately after taking phenytoin as it may cause drowsiness.
  • Do not stop the medication even if you feel fine, until you are checked by the doctor and told to do so.
  • Do not take phenytoin if you have an addiction to alcohol or drug abuse.
  • Avoid using phenytoin if you are pregnant or breast-feeding or planning to become pregnant.
  • Do not take phenytoin if you have a history of liver disease; vitamin D deficiency or diabetes; mental depression or are having suicidal thoughts.

Frequently Ask Questions:

Q. How does phenytoin work? Phenytoin is used to control seizures in epilepsy patients. It is used majorly to treat patients who are having surgery in the brain or nervous system. It is used to treat as well as prevent seizures in such patients. Phenytoin belongs to a class of medication call anti-convulsants. It acts by slowing down the electrical activity of the brain.   Q. Is phenytoin safe in pregnancy? Is phenytoin teratogenic? There are studies in pregnant women which clearly show that use of this drug may cause congenital deformations and defects in fetus. Phenytoin is known to be teratogenic. Thus it is not recommended for use in pregnant women as well as in women who are planning to become pregnant. Inform your doctor immediately if you find that you are pregnant while taking the drug and follow the doctor’s instructions clearly as to further use.   Q. Is phenytoin dialyzable? Can it be removed by dialysis? Phenytoin is dialyzable and it can be removed by dialysis.   Q. Is phenytoin an acid or base? Phenytoin is a base.   Q. Can I take phenytoin with milk? Can I take ibuprofen/aspirin/Tylenol with phenytoin? Phenytoin can be taken with milk. Phenytoin is known to interact with ibuprofen/aspirin/Tylenol. It should be combined only on strict advice of the doctor.   Q. Does phenytoin cause weight gain/QT prolongation/Gingival hyperplasia/memory loss/ hyponatremia/photosensitivity/hair loss/ make you sleepy/high? Phenytoin is known to cause gingival hyperplasia/memory loss/ hyponatremia/photosensitivity make you sleepy as side effects. It is not known to cause weight gain/QT prolongation/make you high. Please inform the doctor immediately if you observe side effects.
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