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(Redirected from Antiepileptic)

The anticonvulsants, sometimes also called antiepileptics, belong to a diverse group of pharmaceuticals used in prevention of the occurrence of epileptic seizures.

Many typical anticonvulsants work by blocking voltage-sensitive sodium channel s in the brain.



Main article: Barbiturates

Barbiturates are drugs that acts as central nervous system (CNS) depressants, and by virtue of this they produce a wide spectrum of effects, from mild sedation to anesthesia. Some also are used as anticonvulsants.

The following are barbiturates:

  • methylphenobarbital
  • phenobarbital
    • phenobarbitone
    • phenobarbitone sodium
  • primidone
  • barbexaclone
  • metharbital


Main article: Hydantoins

As hydentoins have a slow onset of action, they are not recommended for acute control of epilepsy.

The following are hydantoins:

  • ethotoin
  • phenytoin
  • mephenytoin
  • fosphenytoin


Main article: Oxazolidines

The following are oxazolidines:

  • paramethadione
  • trimethadione
  • ethadione


Main article: Succinimides

The following are succinimides:

  • ethosuximide
  • phensuximide
  • mesuximide


Main article: Benzodiazepines

The benzodiazepines are a class of drugs with hypnotic, anxiolytic, anticonvulsive, amnestic and muscle relaxant properties. They are believed to act on the GABA receptor GABAA, the activation of which dampens higher neuronal activity. They began to be widely prescribed for stress-related ailments in the 1960s and 1970s.

Benzodiazepines are often used for short-term relief of severe, disabling anxiety. Long-term use can be problematic due to the development of tolerance and dependency.

These drugs are preferred to the use of barbiturates because they have a lower abuse potential and relatively lower adverse reactions and interactions. However, drowsiness, ataxia, confusion, vertigo, impaired judgement, and a number of other effects are still common.

The following are benzodiazepines. These drugs are listed in order of the shortest acting to the longest acting (by the approximate half-life of the drug), however this time may greatly vary between persons.

These drugs are not benzodiazepines, but have similar effects:


Main article: Carboxamides

The following are carboxamides:

Fatty Acids

Main article: Fatty acids

The following are fatty-acids: