Stavzor is a medication used for treating epilepsy and manic episodes associated with bipolar disorder. It is also approved to prevent migraine headaches. The drug is available by prescription only and comes in the form of a soft gel capsule that is taken one, two, or three times a day. While most people tolerate Stavzor well, potential side effects include nausea, drowsiness, and dizziness.
Stavzor™ (delayed release valproic acid) is a prescription medication used to treat the following conditions:
- Epilepsy -- approved to treat complex partial seizures and simple or complex absence seizures
- Mania -- approved to treat manic episodes associated with bipolar disorder (manic depression)
- Migraines -- approved to help prevent migraine headaches (but the drug does not help treat a headache once it starts).
Stavzor is made by Banner PharmaCaps, Inc. and is marketed and distributed by Noven Therapeutics, LLC.
Stavzor works for epilepsy by increasing the amount of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in the brain. GABA is a natural brain chemical that stops or slows down other brain signals. Increasing GABA helps prevent the abnormal brain signals that lead to a seizure. It is also thought that Stavzor may prevent seizures by affecting sodium channels in the brain. It is not clear exactly how Stavzor works for migraines or bipolar disorder.
Stavzor capsules are "delayed release," which means they are specially designed to prevent the medications from dissolving too early in the digestive tract (which can be irritating to the stomach and esophagus). Stavzor is similar to (but not equivalent to) Depakote® (divalproex sodium) tablets. Both medications provide valproate in a delayed-release form; however, Stavzor soft gel capsules are smaller and, therefore, easier to swallow, compared to Depakote tablets.