VALPROIC ACID- valproic acid capsule 
Upsher-Smith Laboratories, Inc

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MEDICATION GUIDE

VALPROIC ACID (val•pro•ic acid) CAPSULES, USP

Read this Medication Guide before you start taking valproic acid capsules and each time you get a refill. There may be new information. This information does not take the place of talking to your healthcare provider about your medical condition or treatment.

What is the most important information I should know about valproic acid capsules?

Do not stop taking valproic acid capsules without first talking to your healthcare provider.

Stopping valproic acid capsules suddenly can cause serious problems.

Valproic acid capsules can cause serious side effects, including:

1.
Serious liver damage that can cause death, especially in children younger than 2 years old.

The risk of getting this serious liver damage is more likely to happen within the first 6 months of treatment.

Call your healthcare provider right away if you get any of the following symptoms:
  • nausea or vomiting that does not go away
  • loss of appetite
  • pain on the right side of your stomach (abdomen)
  • dark urine
  • swelling of your face
  • yellowing of your skin or the whites of your eyes
     
In some cases, liver damage may continue despite stopping the drug.
 
2.
Valproic acid capsules may harm your unborn baby.
 
  • If you take valproic acid capsules during pregnancy for any medical condition, your baby is at risk for serious birth defects. The most common birth defects with valproic acid capsules affect the brain and spinal cord and are called spina bifida or neural tube defects. These defects occur in 1 to 2 out of every 100 babies born to mothers who use this medicine during pregnancy. These defects can begin in the first month, even before you know you are pregnant. Other birth defects can happen.
  • Birth defects may occur even in children born to women who are not taking any medicines and do not have other risk factors.
  • Taking folic acid supplements before getting pregnant and during early pregnancy can lower the chance of having a baby with a neural tube defect.

    If you take valproic acid capsules during pregnancy for any medical condition, your child is at risk for having a lower IQ.
  • There may be other medicines to treat your condition that have a lower chance of causing birth defects and decreased IQ in your child.
  • Women who are pregnant must not take valproic acid capsules to prevent migraine headaches.
  • All women of child-bearing age should talk to their healthcare provider about using other possible treatments instead of valproic acid capsules. If the decision is made to use valproic acid capsules, you should use effective birth control (contraception).
  • Tell your healthcare provider right away if you become pregnant while taking valproic acid capsules. You and your healthcare provider should decide if you will continue to take valproic acid capsules while you are pregnant.
  • Pregnancy Registry: If you become pregnant while taking valproic acid capsules, talk to your healthcare provider about registering with the North American Antiepileptic Drug Pregnancy Registry. You can enroll in this registry by calling 1-888-233-2334. The purpose of this registry is to collect information about the safety of antiepileptic drugs during pregnancy.
     
3.
Inflammation of your pancreas that can cause death.

Call your healthcare provider right away if you have any of these symptoms:
  • severe stomach pain that you may also feel in your back
  • nausea or vomiting that does not go away
     
4.
Like other antiepileptic drugs, valproic acid capsules may cause suicidal thoughts or actions in a very small number of people, about 1 in 500.

Call a healthcare provider right away if you have any of these symptoms, especially if they are new, worse, or worry you:
  • thoughts about suicide or dying
  • attempts to commit suicide
  • new or worse depression
  • new or worse anxiety
  • feeling agitated or restless
  • panic attacks
  • trouble sleeping (insomnia)
  • new or worse irritability
  • acting aggressive, being angry, or violent
  • acting on dangerous impulses
  • an extreme increase in activity and talking (mania)
  • other unusual changes in behavior or mood

How can I watch for early symptoms of suicidal thoughts and actions?

 
  • Pay attention to any changes, especially sudden changes in mood, behaviors, thoughts, or feelings.
  • Keep all follow-up visits with your healthcare provider as scheduled.

Call your healthcare provider between visits as needed, especially if you are worried about symptoms.

Do not stop valproic acid capsules without first talking to a healthcare provider. Stopping valproic acid capsules suddenly can cause serious problems. Stopping a seizure medicine suddenly in a patient who has epilepsy can cause seizures that do not stop (status epilepticus).

Suicidal thoughts or actions can be caused by things other than medicines. If you have suicidal thoughts or actions, your healthcare provider may check for other causes.

What are valproic acid capsules?

Valproic acid capsules are prescription medicines used alone or with other medicines, to treat:

Who should not take valproic acid capsules?

Do not take valproic acid capsules if you:

What should I tell my healthcare provider before taking valproic acid capsules?

Before you take valproic acid capsules, tell your healthcare provider if you:

Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, herbal supplements and medicines that you take for a short period of time.

Taking valproic acid capsules with certain other medicines can cause side effects or affect how well they work. Do not start or stop other medicines without talking to your healthcare provider.

Know the medicines you take. Keep a list of them and show it to your healthcare provider and pharmacist each time you get a new medicine.

How should I take valproic acid capsules?

What should I avoid while taking valproic acid capsules?

What are the possible side effects of valproic acid capsules?

Call your healthcare provider right away, if you have any of the symptoms listed above.

The common side effects of valproic acid capsules include:

These are not all of the possible side effects of valproic acid capsules. For more information, ask your healthcare provider or pharmacist.

Tell your healthcare provider if you have any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

How should I store valproic acid capsules?

Keep valproic acid capsules and all medicines out of the reach of children.

General information about the safe and effective use of valproic acid capsules

Medicines are sometimes prescribed for purposes other than those listed in a Medication Guide.

Do not use valproic acid capsules for a condition for which it was not prescribed. Do not give valproic acid capsules to other people, even if they have the same symptoms that you have. It may harm them.

This Medication Guide summarizes the most important information about valproic acid capsules. If you would like more information, talk with your healthcare provider. You can ask your pharmacist or healthcare provider for information about valproic acid capsules that is written for health professionals.

For more information, go to www.upsher-smith.com or call 1-888-350-3789.

What are the ingredients in valproic acid capsules?

Valproic Acid Capsules, USP:

Active ingredient: valproic acid
Inactive ingredients: peanut oil, gelatin, glycerin, and titanium dioxide

This Medication Guide has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

Revised: 03/2014
 
Upsher-Smith Laboratories, Inc