Neurosurgeon Questions Epilepsy

Is it safe to get pregnant on seizure medications?

I'm 27 years old and I'm an epileptic. I currently take Keppra and Lamictal, but I want to have children soon. Is it safe to fall pregnant on seizure medications?

6 Answers

Keppra and Lamictal are probably the safest medications to get pregnant on. Please discuss this with your doctor in more detail.
There really are no guaranteed-safe antiseizure medicines, nor indeed any guaranteed-safe pharmaceutical medications of any kind during pregnancy (other than prenatal vitamins, which aren't really medications per se), but it's accurate to say that both levetiracetam (Keppra) and lamotrigine (Lamictal) are fortunately not known to be associated with any particular risks to fetal health during pregnancy, which is of course not quite the same thing as saying that those RX are known to be completely safe.

(This is in contrast to certain other anti-seizure Rx which do have known and defined safety risks during pregnancy, though you're not taking those, and in any case the risk is most important for most Rx of any kind during the first three months of pregnancy, when the baby is going through his earliest development.)

You should understand that the risk to the baby from uncontrolled seizures is higher than any risk from your Rx, so you should definitely not stop taking your Keppra or Lamictal. You should take prenatal vitamins, especially folate, if you do become pregnant.

Your primary care physician or obstetrician-gynecologist can advise you about these things in greater detail, but you should not fear to become pregnant while on the medications you mentioned.
The risk of fetal anomalies are less with drugs like Keppra and Lamotrogine compared to older drugs like valproate. Many patients with epilepsy have gone on to have children, but the pregnancy should be monitored and you should have a talk with the neurologist about the relative risks.
There is risk of malformation of the center nervous system in about 1.5% of all born babies. However this risk a slightly higher than patient with Cedars specially with seizure medication. Some seizure medication have high-risk. The two medication that you’re taking including Keppra and Lamictal Carrie Dolores 1.5% of all born babies. However this risk is slightly higher than patient with seizures specially with seizure medication. Some seizure medication have high-risk. Due to medication that you are taking including Keppra and Lemek tall carry The lowest risk. The estimated risk would be around 3-4%.

In normal mothers there is 98.5% chance of having normal babies without any CNS malformation. In your case, it drops from 98.5 to about 96-97%..

That risk is higher if you stop the medication and have seizures during her pregnancy. It is not recommended.
Both medications are Pregnancy Category C, which means there are no studies in pregnant women. You would need to have a discussion with your neurologist and future OBGYN to discuss the risks vs. the benefits of taking the medications. Seizure control is critical and the risk of seizures outweighs the risk from medications. However, like I mentioned before, the risks need to be weighed against the benefits.