NZ Formulary

Lamotrigine

la-moh-trih-jeen

What does it do?

Lamotrigine is used to treat and prevent seizures. It is also sometimes used for other conditions, such as mood problems.

How should you take it?

Take lamotrigine regularly as directed with a glass of water.
The tablets may be swallowed whole, chewed or dissolved in water.

What if you forget a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as possible and continue as directed.

Can you take other medicines?

Some medicines available without a prescription may react with lamotrigine including:

  • anti-nausea medicines (e.g. prochlorperazine, hyoscine (e.g. Scopoderm TTS®), meclozine (e.g. Sea-legs®)
  • orlistat (Xenical®)
  • some antihistamines (may be in anti-allergy, anti-nausea and cough/cold medicines)

Tell your pharmacist or doctor about all medicines or treatments that you may be taking, including vitamins, herbal products (e.g. ginkgo) or recreational drugs (e.g. ecstasy).

Important information continues on next page.

What side effects might you notice?

Side EffectsRecommended action

Skin rash, skin peeling or blisters

Stop taking and see your doctor immediately

Suicidal thoughts

Reduced number of blood cells that fight infections or help your blood to clot - symptoms include: fever, chills, sore throat or generally feeling unwell, or easy or unusual bruising or bleeding

Symptoms of allergy including: skin rash, itching, swelling, trouble breathing

Tell your doctor immediately

Anxiety, irritability, loss of co-ordination/walking or handwriting problems, low mood

Tell your doctor

Changes in vision

Drowsiness, headache, trouble sleeping, weakness

Runny or blocked nose, dry mouth

Nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, abdominal pain

Tell your doctor if troublesome

If you notice any other effects, discuss them with your doctor or pharmacist.

Other information:

  • Tell your doctor if you have liver or kidney problems.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or breastfeeding.
  • Lamotrigine can impair your ability to do tasks such as driving or using machines. Alcohol makes this worse. Discuss your risk with your health professional. (search NZTA - Are you safe to drive?)
  • Do not stop taking lamotrigine without talking to your doctor first, unless you have a skin rash (see Side Effects).