Why would a doctor prescribe Depakote®?
Depakote®, also known as divalproex sodium, is a prescription medication approved by the FDA to treat various types of seizure disorders, such as epilepsy, as well as migraine headaches, bipolar disorder and manic depression.
This drug is an anticonvulsant and a mood stabilizer, which helps block voltage sensitive sodium channels and restores the balance of certain natural substances (neurotransmitters) in the brain. Depakote® ultimately helps suppress the spread of abnormal electrical discharges, which can help treat symptoms of disorders like epilepsy, bipolar disorder, and migraine headaches.
- Epilepsy: Depakote® is used to treat epilepsy, a neurological disorder marked by unprovoked, recurring seizures. A result of abnormal activity in the brain, people who suffer from this disorder are susceptible to sudden recurrent episodes of convulsions, loss of consciousness, and sensory disturbances. Depakote® is an anticonvulsant that helps block voltage sensitive sodium channels in the brain to help block the brain signals that lead to seizures. More than two million Americans have some form of epilepsy, with about 125,000 new cases reported each year.
- Bipolar Disorder: Commonly known as manic-depressive illness, bipolar disorder is a brain disorder that causes unusual shifts in mood, energy, activity levels, and the ability to carry out day-to-day tasks. Depakote® has been proven effective in the treatment of manic episodes associated with bipolar disorder, also known as manic depression. It acts as a mood stabilizer during these manic episodes during which a person often experiences several symptoms at a time such as racing thoughts, a high or irritable mood, rapid talking, low attention span, and a decreased need for sleep. Depakote® restores the balance of certain natural substances (neurotransmitters) in the brain to help stabilize symptoms of this mental illness.
- Migraine Headaches: A migraine is a headache of varying intensity and is often accompanied by one or more symptoms such as visual disturbances, nausea, vomiting, dizziness, extreme sensitivity to sound, light, touch and smell, and tingling or numbness in the extremities or face. Depakote® is also prescribed to lessen the recurrence of migraine headaches because it acts as an effective preventive measure when taken before the onset of migraines. Although researchers have not pinpointed what causes migraines, it is the third most prevalent illness in the world and affects approximately one billion people worldwide.
Although Depakote®, or valporic acid, is available in different names, strengths and formulations, all provide the same active medicine. Serious side effects related to Depakote® include liver and pancreas damage, birth defects, and suicidal thoughts. To learn more about the complications associated with this medication, visit our Complications page.
If you or a loved one have suffered because of Depakote®, or have been injured, you may be entitled to financial compensation. Recovery may include compensations for your medical bills, pain and suffering, and loss of wages. To find out if you have a claim, please call Avram Blair & Associates, P.C. toll-free at (800) 648-2139 or fill out our online contact form for a free consultation.