Alcohol and Epilepsy medicine

       Ive been taking Epilepsy medicine for 4 years now. I just turned 21 and would like to drink alcohol.  Does alcohol really negate the medicine or are the doctors just saying that? Even if it wears the medicine down a little bit, do you think it would still be fine to drink as long as I still take my medicine on time?

Any thoughts would be great!


Re: Alcohol and Epilepsy medicine

u should be fine i do. i just watch how much. what meds r u on

Re: Alcohol and Epilepsy medicine

I'm taking a big amount of depakote extended release and an average amount of Lamictal

Re: Alcohol and Epilepsy medicine

There are a few reasons NOT to drink while taking AEDs first they are all CNS depressants as is alcohol.  Therefore the combination can decrease your respirations and stop your breathing, espcially if you are drinking quite a bit or are on large doses of AEDs.  Second meds are either processed in your liver, kidneys or both.  A daily dose of something that is hard on your liver is bad enough, adding alcohol to the mix just add to the issue because alcohol is processed in the liver. 

That being said, is a single drink going to be the end of the world as you know it? probably not, is the weekly frat party where you drink until you pass out every week? Much more of a problem than those that do not take AEDs. Drinking is strongly discouraged for those reasons.  Then again... most docs realize we are all human and make dietary indescrtions occaisionally.

Re: Alcohol and Epilepsy medicine

I have some red wine once in a while but I watch how much I have.  I do feel the difference when I have the wine and I know it is not something I want to make a habit of doing.  Remember that you have a lot of medication in your system and mixing alcohol is not safe.  If you are going to have a drink every once in a while, make sure you do not go overboard because it can be dangerous and possibly life threatening if you mix too much.  I was on Depekote for 18 years and that is a heavy drug and not one to mess with too much.  Good luck.

Re: Alcohol and Epilepsy medicine

Hey there,

The doctors have no reason to just warn you against drinking for the sake of just doing so. It really IS dangerous to your health because A. you're Epileptic and B. on AED's (anti epileptic drugs). Alot of Aed's are time release, meaning the drug does not breakdown all at one time it breakdowns slowly through out the day, alcohol can mess with the time release of anti-eps which there fore messes with the balance of the drug in your system, which in turn can cause siezures. This is not the only problem, you may feel fine while you are drinking and while you are drunk, it is however when your brain is recovering, during your hangover that your brain is going to go haywire and you are more likely to increase your odds of seizure activity. so if you're on meds and you have breaktrough seizures, or your meds do not have you controlled I cannot say with confidence that it is a good idea that you drink alcohol. I m 22 years old and trust me when I say I am no angel, there are days when i drink and every time I do, I end up regretting it, because with out fail I always end up having seizures. Keep in mind it only takes ONE TIME to end up in the hospital or worse...I am not trying to scare you but this is the simple truth and there are a lot of people on this site that will agree or tell you the same. However it is also your choice. I do not know the severity of your situation or your knowledge of the effects of alcohol on AED's but if I were you, I would do some research before drinking. Good Luck, and if you have any more questions I'm happy to answer.


Re: Alcohol and Epilepsy medicine

  I've had'nt had a drink in over 5yrs now. It's not killing me but I would like to have one once in a while. Some people have to say still not drinking I see to me or some remark like that to me. If they really anoy me I say still drinking to much to them. Every doctor has told me not to drink so I don't.

Re: Alcohol and Epilepsy medicine

You should not drink alcohol due to the fact that it is a depressant drug and, when mixed with other drugs that you are taking, could have a negative impact on your overall treatment. Depakote is a mood stabilizer, meaning that it will make it difficult for you to change moods. It is often prescribed to manic-depressives for this reason.
If combined with a depressant drug, such as alcohol, it could make you depressed. This would also have a negative impact on your therapy, for it has been proven that depression increases the frequency of seizures.
In short, it could have numerous negative side effects that may outweigh the benefits of drinking. If you are still not sure, check with your doctor first.

Re: Alcohol and Epilepsy medicine

Alcohol does negate the medication. It takes over the anti-convulsant processs itself. But once it is gone there is no anticonvulsant in the bloodstream. If one was to replace their anticonvulant medication with  alcohol, they would be exchanging being an epileptic person for being an alcoholic person. There is also research that shows while red wine may be good for the heart it still can shrink a person's brain, permanently, over time. I have drank some of those beverages with only 0.5% of alcohol and not had any problems with my seizures. But I don't drink them any more, prefering to use wine and sherry in cooking.

Re: Alcohol and Epilepsy medicine

I've said this in another post I believe... it's different for everyone.

I got seizures when I was around 13. I am 21 now. I have been taking Lamictol the whole time and it was fine. I have had seizures randomly, but I see a connection. For me it's the lack of sleep. It was pretty much controlled throughout my high school years. When I FIRST entered college, I would sleep at 3/4 AM for no good reason. I didn't drink though. Then later, as I continued to still sleep bad hours and became more stressed, I got a seizure. I've always known that mine is mainly because of the lack of sleep (and genetics). At some point I started drinking because I just didn't give a shit. I was pissed off and I didn't care. FORTUNATELY FOR ME, I did not get a seizure. I really don't drink the way a lot of college students do. At some point in summer, I got straight up drunk. I don't remember what I had because it was 2 years ago, but I did NOT get a seizure either. After that I just didn't care to get drunk, I get tipsy and that's about it. So basically, FOR ME, I don't think alcohol triggers anything. 

I would say that if you're worried, maybe you shouldn't. If you're still worried, but reeeeeeally want to, just try like, one beer or mixed drink. Then perhaps you might want to get tipsy.
Kinda like when you increase your medication. You don't just randomly double the dosage right away. You have to increase little by little so your body doesn't get messed up.

In general, I just hate having seizures. I know no one wants to have it, but some people have come to accept it. I did at some point and changed my sleeping habits, but I would still get scared and close signs that I was about to have one. This was not related to alcohol. It's just bullshit. It's all a guessing game and I say good luck to you.

 That was just my story.. in case anyone else is like me in terms of seizures and is worried about drinking, what I said might have been helpful.

I mean I hope it's helpful for anyone.

I don't think one drink will kill you unless your seizures are really really bad.