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Roweepra

Last reviewed on RxList: 10/15/2019
Roweepra Side Effects Center

Last reviewed on RxList 10/15/2019

Roweepra (levetiracetam) is an antiseizure (antiepileptic) drug indicated for adjunctive therapy in the treatment of partial onset seizures in patients one month of age and older with epilepsy, myoclonic seizures in patients 12 years of age and older with juvenile myoclonic epilepsy, and primary generalized tonic-clonic seizures in patients 6 years of age and older with idiopathic generalized epilepsy. Roweepra is available in generic form. Common side effects of Roweepra in adults include:

  • drowsiness,
  • weakness,
  • infection, and
  • dizziness.

Common side effects of Roweepra in children include:

Antiepileptic drugs (AEDs), including Roweepra, increase the risk of suicidal thoughts or behavior in patients taking these drugs for any indication. Tell your doctor if this occurs.

The Roweepra dosing regimen depends on the indication, age group, dosage form (tablets or oral solution), and renal function. Roweepra may interact with other drugs. Tell your doctor all medications and supplements you use. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or become pregnant while using Roweepra; it is unknown if it would affect a fetus. Physicians are advised to recommend that pregnant patients taking Roweepra enroll in the North American Antiepileptic Drug (NAAED) pregnancy registry. Roweepra passes into breast milk. Breastfeeding while using Roweepra is not recommended. Antiepileptic drugs, including Roweepra, should be withdrawn gradually to minimize the potential of increased seizure frequency.

Our Roweepra (levetiracetam) 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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Roweepra Professional Information

SIDE EFFECTS

The following adverse reactions are discussed in more details in other sections of labeling:

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.

Partial Onset Seizures

Adults

In controlled clinical studies in adults with partial onset seizures, the most common adverse reactions in patients receiving levetiracetam in combination with other AEDs, for events with rates greater than placebo, were somnolence, asthenia, infection and dizziness. Of the most common adverse reactions in adults experiencing partial onset seizures, asthenia, somnolence, and dizziness occurred predominantly during the first 4 weeks of treatment with levetiracetam.

Table 3 lists adverse reactions that occurred in at least 1% of adult epilepsy patients receiving levetiracetam in placebo-controlled studies and were numerically more common than in patients treated with placebo. In these studies, either levetiracetam or placebo was added to concurrent AED therapy.

Table 3: Adverse Reactions in Pooled Placebo-Controlled, Add-On Studies in Adults Experiencing Partial Onset Seizures

  Levetiracetam
(N=769)
%
Placebo
(N=439)
%
Asthenia 15 9
Somnolence 15 8
Headache 14 13
Infection 13 8
Dizziness 9 4
Pain 7 6
Pharyngitis 6 4
Depression 4 2
Nervousness 4 2
Rhinitis 4 3
Anorexia 3 2
Ataxia 3 1
Vertigo 3 1
Amnesia 2 1
Anxiety 2 1
Cough Increased 2 1
Diplopia 2 1
Emotional Lability 2 0
Hostility 2 1
Paresthesia 2 1
Sinusitis 2 1

In controlled adult clinical studies, 15% of patients receiving levetiracetam and 12% receiving placebo either discontinued or had a dose reduction as a result of an adverse reaction. Table 4 lists the most common (>1%) adverse reactions that resulted in discontinuation or dose reduction and that occurred more frequently in levetiracetam-treated patients than in placebo-treated patients.

Table 4: Adverse Reactions that Resulted in Discontinuation or Dose Reduction in Placebo-Controlled Studies in Adult Patients Experiencing Partial Onset Seizures

Adverse Reaction Levetiracetam
(N=769)
%
Placebo
(N=439)
%
Somnolence 4 2
Dizziness 1 0

Pediatric Patients 4 Years to <16 Years

The adverse reaction data presented below was obtained from a pooled analysis of two controlled pediatric clinical studies in pediatric patients 4 to 16 years of age with partial onset seizures. The most common adverse reactions in pediatric patients receiving levetiracetam in combination with other AEDs, for events with rates greater than placebo, were fatigue, aggression, nasal congestion, decreased appetite, and irritability.

Table 5 lists adverse reactions from the pooled pediatric controlled studies (4 to 16 years of age) that occurred in at least 2% of pediatric levetiracetam-treated patients and were numerically more common than in pediatric patients treated with placebo. In these studies, either levetiracetam or placebo was added to concurrent AED therapy.

Table 5: Adverse Reactions in Pooled Placebo-Controlled, Add-On Studies in Pediatric Patients Ages 4 to 16 Years Experiencing Partial Onset Seizures

  Levetiracetam
(N=165)
%
Placebo
(N=131)
%
Headache 19 15
Nasopharyngitis 15 12
Vomiting 15 12
Somnolence 13 9
Fatigue 11 5
Aggression 10 5
Cough 9 5
Nasal Congestion 9 2
Upper Abdominal Pain 9 8
Decreased Appetite 8 2
Abnormal Behavior 7 4
Dizziness 7 5
Irritability 7 1
Pharyngolaryngeal Pain 7 4
Diarrhea 6 2
Lethargy 6 5
Insomnia 5 3
Agitation 4 1
Anorexia 4 3
Head Injury 4 0
Altered Mood 3 1
Constipation 3 1
Contusion 3 1
Depression 3 1
Fall 3 2
Influenza 3 1
Affect Lability 2 1
Anxiety 2 1
Arthralgia 2 0
Confusional State 2 0
Conjunctivitis 2 0
Ear Pain 2 1
Gastroenteritis 2 0
Joint Sprain 2 1
Mood Swings 2 1
Neck Pain 2 1
Rhinitis 2 0
Sedation 2 1

In the controlled pooled pediatric clinical studies in patients 4-16 years of age, 7% of patients receiving levetiracetam and 9% receiving placebo discontinued as a result of an adverse reaction.

Pediatric Patients 1 Month to < 4 Years

In the 7-day, controlled pediatric clinical study in children 1 month to less than 4 years of age with partial onset seizures, the most common adverse reactions in patients receiving levetiracetam in combination with other AEDs, for events with rates greater than placebo, were somnolence and irritability. Because of the shorter exposure period, incidences of adverse reactions are expected to be lower than in other pediatric studies in older patients. Therefore, other controlled pediatric data, presented above, should also be considered to apply to this age group.

Table 6 lists adverse reactions that occurred in at least 5% of pediatric epilepsy patients (ages 1 month to < 4 years) treated with levetiracetam in the placebo-controlled study and were numerically more common than in patients treated with placebo. In this study, either levetiracetam or placebo was added to concurrent AED therapy.

Table 6: Adverse Reactions in a Placebo-Controlled, Add-On Study in Pediatric Patients Ages 1 Month to < 4 Years Experiencing Partial Onset Seizures

  Levetiracetam
(N=60)
%
Placebo
(N=56)
%
Somnolence 13 2
Irritability 12 0

In the 7-day controlled pediatric clinical study in patients 1 month to < 4 years of age, 3% of patients receiving levetiracetam and 2% receiving placebo either discontinued or had a dose reduction as a result of an adverse reaction. There was no adverse reaction that resulted in discontinuation for more than one patient.

Myoclonic Seizures

Although the pattern of adverse reactions in this study seems somewhat different from that seen in patients with partial seizures, this is likely due to the much smaller number of patients in this study compared to partial seizure studies. The adverse reaction pattern for patients with JME is expected to be essentially the same as for patients with partial seizures.

In the controlled clinical study in patients 12 years of age and older with myoclonic seizures, the most common adverse reactions in patients receiving levetiracetam in combination with other AEDs, for events with rates greater than placebo, were somnolence, neck pain, and pharyngitis.

Table 7 lists adverse reactions that occurred in at least 5% of juvenile myoclonic epilepsy patients experiencing myoclonic seizures treated with levetiracetam and were numerically more common than in patients treated with placebo. In this study, either levetiracetam or placebo was added to concurrent AED therapy.

Table 7: Adverse Reactions in a Placebo-Controlled, Add-On Study in Patients 12 Years of Age and Older with Myoclonic Seizures

  Levetiracetam
(N=60)
%
Placebo
(N=60)
%
Somnolence 12 2
Neck pain 8 2
Pharyngitis 7 0
Depression 5 2
Influenza 5 2
Vertigo 5 3

In the placebo-controlled study, 8% of patients receiving levetiracetam and 2% receiving placebo either discontinued or had a dose reduction as a result of an adverse reaction. The adverse reactions that led to discontinuation or dose reduction and that occurred more frequently in levetiracetam-treated patients than in placebo-treated patients are presented in Table 8.

Table 8: Adverse Reactions that Resulted in Discontinuation or Dose Reduction in a Placebo-Controlled Study in Patients with Juvenile Myoclonic Epilepsy

Adverse Reaction Levetiracetam
(N=60)
%
Placebo
(N=60)
%
Anxiety 3 2
Depressed mood 2 0
Depression 2 0
Diplopia 2 0
Hypersomnia 2 0
Insomnia 2 0
Irritability 2 0
Nervousness 2 0
Somnolence 2 0

Primary Generalized Tonic-Clonic Seizures

Although the pattern of adverse reactions in this study seems somewhat different from that seen in patients with partial seizures, this is likely due to the much smaller number of patients in this study compared to partial seizure studies. The adverse reaction pattern for patients with primary generalized tonic-clonic (PGTC) seizures is expected to be essentially the same as for patients with partial seizures.

In the controlled clinical study that included patients 4 years of age and older with PGTC seizures, the most common adverse reaction in patients receiving levetiracetam in combination with other AEDs, for events with rates greater than placebo, was nasopharyngitis.

Table 9 lists adverse reactions that occurred in at least 5% of idiopathic generalized epilepsy patients experiencing PGTC seizures treated with levetiracetam and were numerically more common than in patients treated with placebo. In this study, either levetiracetam or placebo was added to concurrent AED therapy.

Table 9: Adverse Reactions in a Placebo-Controlled, Add-On Study in Patients 4 Years of Age and Older with PGTC Seizures

  Levetiracetam
(N=79)
%
Placebo
(N=84)
%
Nasopharyngitis 14 5
Fatigue 10 8
Diarrhea 8 7
Irritability 6 2
Mood swings 5 1

In the placebo-controlled study, 5% of patients receiving levetiracetam and 8% receiving placebo either discontinued or had a dose reduction during the treatment period as a result of an adverse reaction.

This study was too small to adequately characterize the adverse reactions that could be expected to result in discontinuation of treatment in this population. It is expected that the adverse reactions that would lead to discontinuation in this population would be similar to those resulting in discontinuation in other epilepsy trials (see tables 4 and 8).

In addition, the following adverse reactions were seen in other controlled adult studies of levetiracetam: balance disorder, disturbance in attention, eczema, memory impairment, myalgia, and blurred vision.

Comparison Of Gender, Age And Race

The overall adverse reaction profile of levetiracetam was similar between females and males. There are insufficient data to support a statement regarding the distribution of adverse reactions by age and race.

Postmarketing Experience

The following adverse reactions have been identified during postapproval use of levetiracetam. 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.

The following adverse reactions have been reported in patients receiving marketed levetiracetam worldwide. The listing is alphabetized: abnormal liver function test, choreoathetosis, drug reaction with eosinophilia and systemic symptoms (DRESS), dyskinesia, erythema multiforme, hepatic failure, hepatitis, hyponatremia, muscular weakness, pancreatitis, pancytopenia (with bone marrow suppression identified in some of these cases), panic attack, thrombocytopenia, and weight loss. Alopecia has been reported with levetiracetam use; recovery was observed in majority of cases where levetiracetam was discontinued.

Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Roweepra (levetiracetam)

QUESTION

If you have had a seizure, it means you have epilepsy. See Answer
Related Resources for Roweepra

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

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