What is Tegretol®-XR (carbamazepine) used for?
Tegretol®-XR is in a class of medications called anticonvulsants. It works by reducing abnormal electrical activity in the brain.
Tegretol®-XR is used alone or in combination with other medications to control certain types of seizures in patients with epilepsy. It is also used to treat trigeminal neuralgia (a condition that causes facial nerve pain).
How should I take Tegretol®-XR (carbamazepine)?
Swallow the tablets whole; do not split, chew, or crush them. The capsules may be opened and the beads inside sprinkled over food, such as a teaspoon of applesauce or similar food. Do not crush or chew the capsules or the beads inside them.
How do I store Tegretol®-XR (carbamazepine)?
Tegretol®-XR is best stored at room temperature away from direct light and moisture. To prevent drug damage, you should not store Tegretol®-XR in the bathroom or the freezer. There may be different brands of Tegretol®-XR that may have different storage needs. It is important to always check the product package for instructions on storage, or ask your pharmacist. For safety, you should keep all medicines away from children and pets.
You should not flush Tegretol®-XR down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. It is important to properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed. Consult your pharmacist for more details about how to safely discard your product.
Precautions & warnings
What should I know before using Tegretol®-XR (carbamazepine)?
Tegretol®-XR may cause life-threatening allergic reactions called Stevens-Johnson syndrome (SJS) or toxic epidermal necrolysis (TEN). These allergic reactions may cause severe damage to the skin and internal organs.
Tegretol®-XR may decrease the number of blood cells produced by your body. In rare cases, the number of blood cells may decrease enough to cause serious or life-threatening health problems. Tell your doctor if you have ever had a decreased number of blood cells, especially if it was caused by another medication. Call your doctor immediately, if you experience any of the following symptoms such as sore throat, fever, chills, or other signs of infection; unusual bleeding or bruising; tiny purple dots or spots on the skin; mouth sores; or rash.
Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your doctor will order certain lab tests before and during your treatment to check your body’s response to Tegretol®-XR.
You should know that Tegretol®-XR may make you drowsy. Do not drive a car or operate machinery until you know how this medication affects you.
Is it safe during pregnancy or breastfeeding?
There are no adequate studies in women for determining risk when using Tegretol®-XR during pregnancy or while breastfeeding. Please always consult with your doctor to weigh the potential benefits and risks before taking Tegretol®-XR. Tegretol®-XR is pregnancy risk category D, according to the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
FDA pregnancy risk category reference below:
- A=No risk
- B=No risk in some studies
- C=There may be some risk
- D=Positive evidence of risk
What side effects can occur from Tegretol®-XR (carbamazepine)?
Tegretol®-XR may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
- Memory problems
- Dry mouth
- Back pain
Some side effects can be serious. If you experience any of these symptoms or those listed in the important warning section, call your doctor immediately:
- Loss of contact with reality
- Chest pain
- Yellowing of the skin or eyes
- Vision problems
- Panic attacks
- Agitation or restlessness
- New or worsening irritability, anxiety, or depression
- Acting on dangerous impulses
- Difficulty falling or staying asleep
- Aggressive, angry, or violent behavior
- Mania (frenzied, abnormally excited mood)
- Talking or thinking about wanting to hurt yourself or end your life
- Withdrawing from friends and family
- Preoccupation with death and dying
- Giving away prized possessions
- Other unusual changes in behavior or mood
Not everyone experiences these side effects. There may be some side effects not listed above. If you have any concerns about a side-effect, please consult your doctor or pharmacist.
What drugs may interact with Tegretol®-XR (carbamazepine)?
Tegretol®-XR may interact with other drugs that you are currently taking, which can change how your drug works or increase your risk for serious side effects. To avoid any potential drug interactions, you should keep a list of all the drugs you are using (including prescription drugs, nonprescription drugs, and herbal products) and share it with your doctor and pharmacist. For your safety, do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any drugs without your doctor’s approval.
Products may interact with this drug including:
- Monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors, including isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), selegiline (Eldepryl), and tranylcypromine (Parnate)
- Liquid medications
- St. John’s Wort
- Hormonal contraceptives
Does food or alcohol interact with Tegretol®-XR (carbamazepine) ?
Alcohol can add to the drowsiness caused by this medication.
What health conditions may interact with Tegretol®-XR (carbamazepine)?
Medication may interact with your health condition. This interaction may worsen your health condition or alter the way the drug works. It is important to always let your doctor and pharmacist know all the health conditions you currently have.
Tell your doctor if you have:
- Heart, kidney, thyroid, or liver disease
- Surgery, including dental surgery
The information provided is not a substitute for any medical advice. You should ALWAYS consult with your doctor or pharmacist before using Tegretol®-XR (carbamazepine).
What is the dose of Tegretol®-XR (carbamazepine) for an adult?
Initial dose: 200 mg orally 2 times a day (immediate and extended release) or 100 mg orally 4 times a day (suspension).
Increase dose at weekly intervals by adding up to 200 mg/day using a 2 times a day regimen of extended release or a 3 times a day or 4 times a day regimen of the other formulations.
Maintenance dose: 800 to 1200 mg/day.
Dosage generally should not exceed 1200 mg/day.
However, doses up to 1600 mg/day have been used in rare instances.
Initial dose: 100 mg orally 2 times a day (immediate or extended release) or 50 mg orally 4 times a day (suspension).
May increase by up to 200 mg per day using increments of 100 mg every 12 hours (immediate or extended release), or 50 mg 4 times a day (suspension), only as needed to achieve freedom from pain. Do not exceed 1200 mg per day.
Maintenance dose: 400 to 800 mg per day.
What is the dose of Tegretol®-XR (carbamazepine) for a child?
Less than 6 years of age:
- Initial dose: 10 to 20 mg/kg/day orally in 2 to 3 divided doses (tablets) or 4 divided doses (suspension).
- Increase dose at weekly intervals to achieve optimal clinical response administered 3 or 4 times a day.
- Maximum dose: 35 mg/kg/day.
6 to 12 years of age:
- Initial dose: 100 mg orally 2 times a day (immediate or extended release tablets) or 50 mg orally 4 times a day (suspension).
- Increase dose at weekly intervals in 100 mg per day increments using a 2 times a day regimen of extended release or a 3 times a day or 4 times a day regimen of the other formulations.
- Maintenance dose: 400 to 800 mg per day.
- Maximum dose: 1000 mg per day.
Greater than 12 years of age:
- Initial dose: 200 mg orally 2 times a day (immediate and extended release) or 100 mg orally 4 times a day (suspension).
- Increase dose at weekly intervals in 200 mg per day increments using a 2 times a day regimen of extended release or a 3 times daily to 4 times daily regimen of the other formulations.
- Maintenance dose: 800 to 1200 mg per day.
- Dosage generally should not exceed 1000 mg in children 12 to 15 years and 1200 mg/day in patients older than 15 years.
- Doses up to 1600 mg/day have been used in rare instances.
How is Tegretol®-XR (carbamazepine) available?
Tegretol®-XR is available in the following dosage forms and strengths:
- Tablet 200mg, an extended-release (long-acting) tablet 200mg, an extended-release capsule 200mg.
What should I do in case of an emergency or overdose?
In case of an emergency or an overdose, call your local emergency services or go to your nearest emergency room.
What should I do if I miss a dose?
If you miss a dose of Tegretol®-XR, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and take your regular dose as scheduled. Do not take a double dose.
Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.
Tegretol®-XR. https://medlineplus.gov/druginfo/meds/a682237.html. Accessed November 5, 2016
Review Date: December 29, 2016 | Last Modified: September 13, 2019