Epilepsy Home > Tegretol

Tegretol has been approved to treat various types of seizures, as well as pain associated with trigeminal neuralgia. The drug is believed to work by blocking sodium channels in the brain and blocking nerve signals that cause pain. Tegretol comes in tablet form and as a liquid, and is usually taken two to four times a day. Possible side effects include dizziness, drowsiness, and nausea.

What Is Tegretol?

Tegretol® (carbamazepine) is a prescription medication used to treat the following conditions:
 
  • Epilepsy -- The medication is approved to treat various types of seizures, although it is usually not effective for treating absence seizures (petit mal seizures).
     
  • Trigeminal neuralgia -- Tegretol is also approved to treat pain associated with trigeminal neuralgia (also known as tic douloureux), a nerve condition that causes episodes of facial pain (typically cheek or jaw pain).
     
(Click Tegretol Uses for more information, including possible off-label uses.)
 

Who Makes It?

Tegretol is made by Novartis Pharmaceuticals.
 

How Does Tegretol Work?

Epilepsy is a brain disorder that occurs when there are recurring, brief changes in how the brain's electrical system works. This change in brain activity can lead to a seizure (see Epilepsy Symptoms). It is not known exactly how Tegretol works to prevent partial seizures in people with epilepsy. It may work by blocking sodium channels in the brain, which may decrease the activity of nerve cells, preventing them from firing abnormally. The drug may also prevent abnormal signals from spreading to other parts of the brain.
 
It is thought that Tegretol works to treat trigeminal neuralgia by blocking the nerve signals that cause pain and other unpleasant sensations.
 
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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