levetiracetam (Keppra) Side Effects

  • Medical and Pharmacy Editor: Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD
    Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

    Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

    Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.

What is levetiracetam?

Brand name(s): Keppra, Keppra XR

Levetiracetam (Keppra, Keppra XR) is an antiseizure medication used in combination with other antiseizure medications to treat myoclonic, partial onset, or tonic seizures in children and adults. (The safety and effectiveness in patients younger than 4 years of age has not been established.)

Common side effects are:

Keppra has few drug interactions, and it should be used during pregnancy and breastfeeding only if the potential benefits of the drug justifies the potential risk to the fetus and infant. The abuse and potential dependence on this drug hasn't been studied in humans.

While there are no known incidences of overdose with Keppra, signs and symptoms of overdose are sleepiness, agitation, aggression, a depressed level of consciousness, respiratory depression, and coma. Discuss any concerns about this drug with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health-care professional.

Read the entire levetiracetam (Keppra) drug consumer monograph >>

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 or Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.

What are the side effects of levetiracetam?

Common side effects associated with levetiracetam include:

In some patients Keppra causes behavioral abnormalities such as:

Other side effects include:

  • Steven-Johnson syndrome and toxic epidermal necrolysis (severe skin reactions) in children and adults
  • High blood pressure

Like other antiseizure medications, levetiracetam should not be discontinued suddenly because of the risk of increased seizure activity.

Antiepileptic medications have been associated with increased risk of suicidal thinking and behavior. Anyone considering the use of antiepileptic drugs must balance this risk of suicide with the clinical need. Patients who are started on therapy should be closely observed for clinical worsening, suicidal thoughts, or unusual changes in behavior.

If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist. In the US -Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.

Read the entire levetiracetam (Keppra) drug consumer monograph >>

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 5/22/2017

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