Are there any anti-seizure meds that are considered safer than others with less side effects?

I really need some advice. My neurologist wants to start me on 500 mg Depakote for partial seizures and I have put off taking it because of the all the possible side effects I have been reading about on this site and others.I only had 3 seizures over the past few months after my crainiotomy so I has hopeful they would stop. I had 3 more partial seizures in my left arm, just today with tingly and numbness on lips, tongue and left side of my face. Is it really a big deal to just not treat them, since they are only partial seizures, or can they become worse? I have always had terrible problems taking any kind or drug. Any suggestions of a better med than Depakote?

Hi Sue-
I am taking Lamictal and have been very happy with it. I started out with Dilantin and that was absolutely nasty stuff. I believe that lamictal has to be started after another drug has been started. I honestly don’t know. I had only one partial seizure last November that was the reason my AVM was discovered. They are very important to treat because they could turn into something else that can happen at any place at anytime and may or may not give you a warning. I would ask your neurologist thinks of Lamictal and if it would be right for you. Good luck with finding the med that works for you. It can be trial and error, but don’t get discouraged you will find your glass slipper. There are a few more sites out there that real people who take the drugs talk about how they feel about the various medications out there. Here are the links.

Thanks, Jamie and Jason ~ I appreciate your advice. I now realize I do need to get the seizures under control and if I don’t they could turn into something worse. I talked to my neurologist and primary doctor. They both feel that Depakote is the best choice for me and I really don’t have any other choice but to take it. I started on just 250 mg last week and went up to 500 mg last night, which is what I will stay on. So far so good. Well see what the 500 does. I am hopeful I won’t have any bad side effects. I have noticed the numbness and tingly in my arm has improved and my headaches seem a little better. Just have to wait and see and stay optimistic. I hope you are both doing well!
Jason Eppert said:

Hi Sue, I also “only” have partial seizures,they are in my left leg. I’ve had them for several years now and they are the main reason I went to the doctor and my avm was found. I have been on 4 different meds now and I don’t like any of them. I still have a seizure about every 4-6 weeks and I asked my doctor about stopping them and he said that the seizures could get worse of I did. Right now I’m taking Tegretol. It doesn’t seem to have as bad of side effects as the others I’ve taken, plus it’s on the walmart $4.00 plan. Good luck.

Hi Sue,My husband medication just got changed.He never had seizure before but they put him on Keppra.Lately he is getting dizzy.They change it to Lyrica.So far my husband feels great. Good Luck on your medication.

Hi Sue,

One DR gave us (and I don’t think we still have it) a listing of the top or many anti-S med, describing which type of seizures they were usually prescribed for along with potential side effects.

I believe that Drs usually start with the safest anti-S med typically used for your particular type of S, and work their way to more risky ones if the first doesn’t work.

Our son has epilepsy (not AVM related), so we’ve been down the RX path big time. I can’t recall without looking all the meds he tried for seizure control–and COMBINATIONS of them–often more than one RX is used as the meds interact to control seizures better.

Just did a quick search and found a great site–see my new post about it.

Best wishes,
Ron, KS