Last updated on RxList: 4/1/2019
Aptiom Side Effects Center

Last reviewed on RxList 4/1/2019

Aptiom (eslicarbazepine acetate) is an antiepileptic drug (AED) indicated as adjunctive treatment of partial-onset seizures. Common side effects of Aptiom include:

Antiepileptic drugs, including Aptiom, increase the risk of suicidal thoughts or behavior. Tell your doctor if this occurs.

Start treatment with Aptiom at 400 mg once daily. After one week, increase dosage of Aptiom to 800 mg once daily (recommended maintenance dosage). Aptiom may interact with carbamazepine, phenytoin, phenobarbital, primidone, clobazam, omeprazole, and hormonal contraceptives. Tell your doctor all medications and supplements you use.Aptiom is not recommended for use during pregnancy; it may harm a fetus. Pregnant patients taking Aptiom are encouraged to enroll in the North American Antiepileptic Drug Pregnancy Registry. Women should talk to their doctors about use of contraception while taking Aptiom as this drug may make hormonal contraceptives less effective. Aptiom passes into breast milk. Breastfeeding while using Aptiom is not recommended. Aptiom should be withdrawn gradually because of the risk of increased seizure frequency and status epilepticus.

Our Aptiom (eslicarbazepine acetate) tablets Side Effects Drug Center provides a comprehensive view of available drug information on the potential side effects when taking this medication.

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.


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Aptiom Consumer Information

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Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction (hives, difficult breathing, swelling in your face or throat) or a severe skin reaction (fever, sore throat, burning in your eyes, skin pain, red or purple skin rash that spreads and causes blistering and peeling).

Seek medical treatment if you have a serious drug reaction that can affect many parts of your body. Symptoms may include: skin rash, fever, swollen glands, flu-like symptoms, muscle aches, severe weakness, unusual bruising, or yellowing of your skin or eyes. This reaction may occur several weeks after you began using eslicarbazepine.

Eslicarbazepine can reduce the sodium in your body to dangerously low levels, which can cause a life-threatening electrolyte imbalance. Call your doctor right away if you have nausea, lack of energy, confusion, feeling tired or irritable, severe weakness, muscle pain, or increased seizures.

Report any new or worsening symptoms to your doctor, such as: mood or behavior changes, depression, anxiety, or if you feel agitated, hostile, restless, hyperactive (mentally or physically), or have thoughts about suicide or hurting yourself.

Also call your doctor at once if you have:

  • severe dizziness or drowsiness, vision changes, thinking problems, trouble with walking or coordination;
  • sudden weakness or ill feeling, fever, chills, sore throat, mouth sores; or
  • liver problems--nausea, loss of appetite, upper stomach pain, dark urine, jaundice (yellowing of the skin or eyes).

Common side effects may include:

  • dizziness, drowsiness, headache;
  • feeling tired;
  • nausea, vomiting;
  • coordination problems, feeling shaky; or
  • double vision.

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.

Read the entire detailed patient monograph for Aptiom (Eslicarbazepine Acetate Tablets)


What Is Epilepsy? Symptoms, Causes, and Treatments See Slideshow
Aptiom Professional Information


The following adverse reactions are described in more detail in the Warnings and Precautions section of the label:

  • Suicidal Behavior and Ideation [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS]
  • Serious Dermatologic Reactions [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS]
  • Drug Reaction with Eosinophilia and Systemic Symptoms (DRESS)/Multiorgan Hypersensitivity [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS]
  • Anaphylactic Reactions and Angioedema [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS]
  • Hyponatremia [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS]
  • Neurological Adverse Reactions [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS]
  • Drug Induced Liver Injury [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS]
  • Abnormal Thyroid Function Tests [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS]
  • Pancytopenia, Agranulocytosis, and Leukopenia [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS]

Clinical Trials Experience

Because clinical trials are conducted under widely varying conditions, adverse reaction rates observed in the clinical trials of a drug cannot be directly compared to rates in the clinical trials of another drug and may not reflect the rates observed in practice.

Adult Patients

In monotherapy trials in patients with partial-onset seizures [Study 1 and Study 2, see Clinical Studies], 365 patients received APTIOM, of whom 225 were treated for longer than 12 months and 134 for longer than 24 months. Of the patients in those trials, 95% were between 18 and 65 years old; 48% were male, and 84% were Caucasian. Across controlled and uncontrolled trials in patients receiving adjunctive therapy for partial-onset seizures, 1195 patients received APTIOM, of whom 586 were treated for longer than 6 months and 462 for longer than 12 months. In the placebo controlled adjunctive therapy trials in patients with partial-onset seizures (Study 3, Study 4 and Study 5), 1021 patients received APTIOM. Of the patients in those trials, approximately 95% were between 18 and 60 years old, approximately 50% were male, and approximately 80% were Caucasian.

Monotherapy Historical Control Trials

In the monotherapy epilepsy trials (Study 1 and Study 2), 13% of patients randomized to receive APTIOM at the recommended doses of 1200 mg and 1600 mg once daily discontinued from the trials as a result of an adverse event. The adverse reaction most commonly (≥1% on APTIOM) leading to discontinuation was hyponatremia.

Adverse reactions observed in these studies were generally similar to those observed and attributed to drug in adjunctive placebo-controlled studies. Because these studies did not include a placebo control group, causality could not be established.

Dizziness, nausea, somnolence, and fatigue were all reported at lower incidences during the AED Withdrawal Phase and Monotherapy Phase compared with the Titration Phase.

Adjunctive Therapy Controlled Trials

In the controlled adjunctive therapy epilepsy trials (Study 3, Study 4, and Study 5), the rate of discontinuation as a result of any adverse reaction was 14% for the 800 mg dose, 25% for the 1200 mg dose, and 7% in subjects randomized to placebo. The adverse reactions most commonly (≥1% in any APTIOM treatment group, and greater than placebo) leading to discontinuation, in descending order of frequency, were dizziness, nausea, vomiting, ataxia, diplopia, somnolence, headache, blurred vision, vertigo, asthenia, fatigue, rash, dysarthria, and tremor.

The most frequently reported adverse reactions in patients receiving APTIOM at doses of 800 mg or 1200 mg (≥4% and ≥2% greater than placebo) were dizziness, somnolence, nausea, headache, diplopia, vomiting, fatigue, vertigo, ataxia, blurred vision, and tremor.

Table 4 gives the incidence of adverse reactions that occurred in ≥2% of subjects with partial-onset seizures in any APTIOM treatment group and for which the incidence was greater than placebo during the controlled clinical trials. Adverse reactions during titration were less frequent for patients who began therapy at an initial dose of 400 mg for 1 week and then increased to 800 mg compared to patients who initiated therapy at 800 mg.

Table 4: Adverse Reactions Incidence in Pooled Controlled Clinical Trials of Adjunctive Therapy in Adults (Events ≥2% of Patients in the APTIOM 800 mg or 1200 mg Dose Group and More Frequent Than in the Placebo Group)

  Placebo APTIOM
800 mg 1200 mg
Ear and labyrinth disorders
  Vertigo <1 2 6
Eye disorders
  Diplopia 2 9 11
  Blurred vision 1 6 5
  Visual impairment 1 2 1
Gastrointestinal disorders
  Nausea 5 10 16
  Vomiting 3 6 10
  Diarrhea 3 4 2
  Constipation 1 2 2
  Abdominal pain 1 2 2
  Gastritis <1 2 <1
General disorders and administration site conditions
  Fatigue 4 4 7
  Asthenia 2 2 3
  Gait disturbance <1 2 2
  Peripheral edema 1 2 1
Infections and Infestations
  Urinary tract infections 1 2 2
Injury, poisoning and procedural complications
  Fall 1 3 1
Metabolism and nutrition disorders
  Hyponatremia <1 2 2
Nervous system disorders
  Dizziness 9 20 28
  Somnolence 8 11 18
  Headache 9 13 15
  Ataxia 2 4 6
  Balance disorder <1 3 3
  Tremor 1 2 4
  Dysarthria 0 1 2
  Memory impairment <1 1 2
  Nystagmus <1 1 2
Psychiatric disorders
  Depression 2 1 3
  Insomnia 1 2 3
Respiratory, thoracic and mediastinal disorders
  Cough 1 2 1
Skin and subcutaneous tissue disorders
  Rash 1 1 3
Vascular disorders
  Hypertension 1 1 20

Pediatric Patients (4 To 17 Years Of Age)

Clinical studies of pediatric patients 4 to 17 years of age were conducted which support the safety and tolerability of APTIOM for the treatment of partial-onset seizures. Across studies in pediatric patients with partial-onset seizures, 393 patients ages 4 to 17 years received APTIOM, of whom 265 received APTIOM for at least 1 year. Adverse reactions reported in clinical studies of pediatric patients 4 to 17 years of age were similar to those seen in adult patients.

Other Adverse Reactions With Aptiom Use

Compared to placebo, APTIOM use was associated with slightly higher frequencies of decreases in hemoglobin and hematocrit, increases in total cholesterol, triglycerides, and LDL, and increases in creatine phosphokinase.

Adverse Reactions Based On Gender And Race

No significant gender differences were noted in the incidence of adverse reactions. Although there were few non-Caucasian patients, no differences in the incidences of adverse reactions compared to Caucasian patients were observed.

Postmarketing Experience

The following adverse reactions have been identified during postapproval use of APTIOM. Because these reactions are reported voluntarily from a population of uncertain size, it is not always possible to reliably estimate their frequency or establish a causal relationship to drug exposure:

Hematologic and Lymphatic Systems: leukopenia, agranulocytosis, thrombocytopenia, megaloblastic anemia, and pancytopenia [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS]

Metabolism and Nutrition Disorders: syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormone secretion (SIADH) [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS]

Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Aptiom (Eslicarbazepine Acetate Tablets)


If you have had a seizure, it means you have epilepsy. See Answer

© Aptiom Patient Information is supplied by Cerner Multum, Inc. and Aptiom Consumer information is supplied by First Databank, Inc., used under license and subject to their respective copyrights.

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