Phenytoin Sodium 100 mg Tab.

Phenytoin Sodium 100 mg

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Phenytoin sodium is an antiepileptic drug indicated to control seizures or fits by decreasing the abnormal and excessive activity of the nerve cells in the brain. The drug can be intravenously injected or orally consumed in the form of tablets. It is useful in the prevention of tonic-clonic seizures (also known as grand mal seizures) and focal seizures, but not absence seizures. Phenytoin works by altering the sodium channels present in the brain that are responsible for inducing seizures of a different kind. The phenytoin sodium tablets are not for self-medication and should only be taken when prescribed by a doctor.

Before taking the tablets, carefully read all the instructions given in the manual. Inform your doctor if you are allergic to phenytoin or similar drugs. The dosage should be unique to each patient as there is wide inter-patient variability in the usage of phenytoin. The drug should be introduced in smaller dosages with gradual increments over time. Phenytoin is a potent drug that elicits moderate to severe side effects in its users. Some common side effects are headache, nausea, vomiting, constipation, dizziness, etc.

Contraindications of Phenytoin Sodium Tablets

You should not use phenytoin if you are allergic to it or has a history of certain health conditions. Be wary if you are or have ever been a patient of the health conditions given below:

  • Liver problems caused by phenytoin
  • An allergy to similar medicines such as ethotoin, fosphenytoin, or mephenytoin
  • If you currently take delavirdine (Rescriptor)
  • Heart problems
  • Liver disease
  • Diabetes
  • Depression
  • Suicidal thoughts or actions;
  • Vitamin D deficiency

Uses of Phenytoin Sodium Tablets

Phenytoin sodium tablets are used to treat a myriad of neuropsychiatric conditions. The common indications of phenytoin sodium tablets are given following:

  • Tonic-clonic seizures
  • Focal seizures
  • Seizures during surgery
  • Abnormal heart rhythms
  • Digoxin toxicity

Side effects of Phenytoin Sodium Tablets

The usage of phenytoin can induce a wide range of side effects in its users. Usually, the side effects may resolve over time and do not require medical attention. However, if the side effects persist or worsen with time, immediately seek medical attention. The list of side effects is given below:

  • Slow or uneven heartbeats, chest pain, fluttering in your chest, and dizziness (like you might pass out)
  • Any skin rash
  • Fever, chills, sore throat, swollen glands
  • Red or swollen gums, mouth sores
  • Easy bruising, unusual bleeding, purple or red spots under your skin
  • Liver problems
  • The increased glucose level in the blood
  • Megaloblastic anemia
  • Gingival hyperplasia
  • Excessive hair growth on the face
  • Hypotension (low blood pressure)
  • Abnormality of voluntary movements
  • Arrhythmia (irregular heartbeats)

Drug Interactions

Sometimes taking two drugs at the same time can elicit an unpleasant reaction. Hence, it is advised to consult a doctor and inform him of all the medications you are currently on and ascertain all the possible scenarios of a drug interaction.  

Interactions with Medicines:

  • antibiotics such as Metronidazole, Chloramphenicol, Clarithromycin, Azithromycin
  • Cortones (such as Betamethasone, dexamethasone, Hydrocortisone, and Prednisolone
  • L-DOPA (Phenytoin can cause the beneficial effect of levodopa to disappear).
  • Antidepressants drugs
  • Antifungal drugs such as Fluconazole, Ketoconazole

Precautions and Warnings

  1. Inform your doctor if you are allergic to phenytoin or similar type of medicines.
  2. Do not consume alcohol or other depressant drugs as phenytoin causes drowsiness or dizziness in its users.
  3. Vitamin D supplements should be taken along with tablets to avoid the weakening of bones.
  4. Women who are trying to conceive or are already pregnant should avoid taking phenytoin sodium tablets without a doctor’s consultation.
  5. Discuss reliable birth control with your doctor as phenytoin interacts with many forms of oral and intravenous contraception methods.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. For how long does Phenytoin stay in your system?

On average, Phenytoin may stay in your system for 5-6 days. This duration varies from person to person. In some cases, it may stay for about 9-10 days.

  1. What are the effects of Phenytoin on children?

The most common side effects related to Phenytoin in children are jerky movements of the eyes (nystagmus) and overgrowth of the gums.

  1. Does Phenytoin affect birth control?

Phenytoin does affect birth control. Phenytoin can decrease the effect of oral contraceptives (birth control pills) which can make the contraceptive (birth control) effect unreliable.

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