Epilepsy Home > Keppra XR Warnings and Precautions

Before starting epilepsy treatment with Keppra XR, warnings and precautions for the medication should be discussed with your healthcare provider. It is important to know that the drug may cause certain side effects, including drowsiness and behavior or emotional changes. Make sure to tell your healthcare provider about all other existing medical conditions you have and any drugs you are taking before using Keppra XR.

What Should I Tell My Healthcare Provider Before Taking Keppra XR?

You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking Keppra XR™ (levetiracetam XR) if you have:
  • Anemia or any other blood disorder
  • Kidney disease, including kidney failure (renal failure)
  • Any allergies, including allergies to food, dyes, or preservatives.
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you are:
  • Pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant
  • Breastfeeding.
Make sure to tell your healthcare provider about all other medicines you are taking, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.

Specific Precautions and Warnings

Warnings and precautions to be aware of prior to taking Keppra XR include the following:
  • Keppra XR can cause drowsiness. Make sure to see how the drug affects you before driving or operating any machinery.
  • Keppra XR can cause behavior or emotional changes. Let your healthcare provider know if you develop bothersome or disturbing changes, such as depression, personality changes, anxiety, irritability, aggression, or hallucinations.
  • As with all seizure medications, Keppra XR should not be stopped suddenly.
  • In studies, Keppra (the short-acting version of Keppra XR) caused minor changes in blood counts, especially changes in red blood cells and a certain type of white blood cells called neutrophils. This is not expected to cause problems in most people, unless you already have a problem with anemia or other blood disorders.
  • The kidneys help remove Keppra XR from your body. If you have kidney disease, your healthcare provider may suggest a lower Keppra XR dosage.
  • Keppra XR is considered a pregnancy Category C medication. This means that it may not be safe for pregnant women. Talk to your healthcare provider about the risks and benefits of taking the drug during pregnancy (see Keppra XR and Pregnancy).
  • Keppra XR passes through breast milk. Therefore, if you are breastfeeding or plan to start, discuss this with your healthcare provider prior to taking the drug (see Keppra XR and Breastfeeding).
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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