Seizure medications

Your doctor is likely to prescribe antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) as treatment for your child’s or loved one's Lennox-Gastaut syndrome (LGS). LGS involves many types of seizures and will usually require multiple anti-seizure medications.1 As a result, your doctor is likely to prescribe more than one medication.

Some AEDs can be used as single agents (monotherapy), and others are used as adjunctive (add-on) medications. Monotherapy agents can be given alone, and adjunctive medications must be given in addition to other medications. Your healthcare provider will make a decision for your loved one, based on the patient’s own history and examination findings. No two patients are the same, so treatment approaches also vary.

Talk to your doctor about whether the medications currently available for seizure control might be appropriate for your loved one. When prescribing multiple medications, your doctor should be mindful of the effects that each medication will have. Because of this, it is important that your doctor knows all medications your child or loved one is taking—including, but not limited to, the ones for the seizures.

LGS involves multiple types of seizures and will usually require multiple anti-seizure medications.1

Find information on LGS treatment options

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Side effects

Most children who have LGS are given multiple medications to control the multiple types of seizures they might have. This is called polytherapy, or treating with more than one drug. The goal of this therapy is to balance optimum seizure control with minimal side effects.2

Different AEDs have different side effects. Taking multiple medications may increase or worsen certain potential side effects.3 Also, children who show improvement initially from one medication may become tolerant to the drug over time, and their level of response to treatment may change.1

Over time, LGS features and associated symptoms may change, and so may the individual patient’s response to treatments. This is why your doctor must continuously assess whether the potential advantages of any given therapy outweigh its potential disadvantages.3

Some families may choose to add nonmedicinal options to their child’s treatment plan.


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References:

  • 1. NINDS Lennox-Gastaut information page. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke Web site. http://www.ninds.nih.gov/disorders/lennoxgastautsyndrome/lennoxgastautsyndrome.htm. Updated June 15, 2010. Accessed August 20, 2012.
  • 2. Treatments for Lennox-Gastaut syndrome. LGS Foundation Web site. http://www.lgsfoundation.org/#!treatments/c1isl. Accessed April 21, 2014.
  • 3. Bourgeois BFD, Gilliam F. Adjunctive and combination therapy. In: Engel J Jr, Pedley TA, eds. Epilepsy: A Comprehensive Textbook. 2nd ed. Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins; 2008:1321-1325.

This Web site contains information relating to various medical conditions and treatment. Such information is provided for educational purposes only and is not meant to be a substitute for the advice of a physician or other healthcare professionals. You should not use this information for diagnosing a health problem or disease. In order for you to make intelligent healthcare decisions, you should always consult with a physician or other healthcare provider for your, or your loved one's, personal medical needs. All quotes included in this Web site represent the individual experience of some doctors, some patients, and their caregivers. Individual responses to treatment may vary.

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