Trileptal for Nerve Pain

Trileptal is not approved for the treatment of nerve pain, but some studies have found that the drug may be effective for this use. However, more research needs to be conducted before the full benefits and risks of using Trileptal for nerve pain are known. When a healthcare provider prescribes Trileptal for the treatment of nerve pain, he or she is prescribing it in an "off-label" manner.

Treating Nerve Pain With Trileptal

Trileptal® (oxcarbazepine) is a prescription medication approved to treat seizures in people with epilepsy. However, like many other seizure medications, it may also be effective for nerve pain treatment, although it is not approved for this use. This means that when prescribed for nerve pain, Trileptal is being used in an "off-label" fashion.
 

How Trileptal Works for Nerve Pain

There are several different types of pain, and nerve pain can be one of the most bothersome and frustrating types. Nerve pain usually results from damage to a nerve, which causes it to send pain signals to the brain, even though there is often no physical cause for the pain. Nerve damage can be caused by infections (such as shingles), other medical conditions (such as diabetes or trigeminal neuralgia), tumors, or physical damage from injury or surgery.
 
Trileptal is closely related to carbamazepine (Epitol®, Equetro™, Tegretol®, Tegretol® XR), an older seizure medication. Since carbamazepine is often effective for nerve pain, it seems reasonable to expect that Trileptal would also work for nerve pain.
 

What Does the Research Say?

A few studies using Trileptal to treat nerve pain have been published. Some suggest that the drug is safe and effective for this use, while others have found it to be ineffective. Most of these studies were small or had problems in their design. Larger, better-designed studies are needed before the full benefits and risks of treating nerve pain with Trileptal are known.
 
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