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MEDICATIONS




DIAMOX (Acetazolamide)



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Acetazolamide (Diamox) is an antiepileptic drug used in treating seizures. It is usually used as a second drug to control simple and complex partial seizures, generalized tonic/clonic seizures (grand mal), and seizures around the time of the menstrual period.

What side effects can be caused by Diamox?



Like other drugs, Diamox may cause some unwanted side effects. Not everyone will experience these effects. Report any of the following side effects to your doctor if they become bothersome. (There is a risk of serious side effects, including death, with all medications that are used to treat seizures. However, this risk is exceedingly small.)

  1. This medication may act like a mild diuretic (water pill) and increase urination, but this effect will usually disappear after several days of therapy.

  2. It is important to drink plenty of fluid while taking Diamox to reduce the likelihood of kidney stones.

  3. Potassium loss may occur. Some symptoms of this are muscle cramps and unusual tiredness or weakness. You may want to drink extra orange juice or eat a banana daily to increase your potassium intake.

  4. Numbness or tingling in the hands or feet may occur.

  5. Loss of appetite or metallic taste in mouth can occur in some patients.

  6. Nausea or diarrhea may occur.

  7. Like any medicine, Diamox occasionally causes an allergic reaction. People who are allergic to sulfa drugs may be allergic to Diamox. Report skin rashes, unusual bleeding or other problems to your doctor.
Women who plan to have children should consult with the doctor about the possible effects on the fetus.

How should I take my medicine?



It is important that you take the total daily dose of Diamox. This is usually divided into 3 or 4 doses. Since this drug may cause stomach upset, you may want to take it with food. A convenient way to take Diamox may be to take it with meals and at bedtime. Do not stop this medication without the advice of your doctor, doing so may result in an increase in seizures.

Can I take diamoz with other medications?



Diamox may be taken with most other medications. Over the counter medications containing high doses of aspirin or other salicylate products should not be taken with Diamox.

What should I do if I miss a dose?



If you miss a dose of Diamox, take it as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, do not take the missed dose and do not double the next one. Return to your regular dosing schedule the following day. If you awaken and find that you have forgotten your dose from the night before, take your usual prescribed doses for that day. It is important that you do not run out of medication. Always have at least one week's supply of medication on hand. You or your pharmacist may call your doctor's office in order to obtain refills.

© 2004 The Neurological Institute of New York • Columbia Comprehensive Epilepsy Center. 710 W 168th St, New York, NY 10032. Phone: 212-305-1742
Department of Neurology | Columbia University Medical Center | Last updated: December 12, 2012 | Comments
 

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