What Is Levetiracetam XR Used For?
Levetiracetam XR is used for the treatment of epilepsy in adults and adolescents ages 16 and older. Specifically, it is licensed to treat partial seizures, which are seizures that occur in just one part of the brain. Occasionally, healthcare providers may also recommend off-label uses of the medicine, such as for treating other types of seizures, preventing migraines, and treating nerve pain.
Levetiracetam XR (Keppra™) is a prescription epilepsy medication. Specifically, it is approved to be used in combination with other seizure medications to treat partial seizures in people 16 years of age and older.
Epilepsy is a condition that causes sudden, brief changes in the electrical system of the brain. These brain activity changes can lead to seizures (see Epilepsy Symptoms). Depending on which parts of the brain are affected, seizures may affect the person's consciousness, body movements, emotions, or senses.
There are over 30 different types of seizures a person with epilepsy may experience. Levetiracetam XR is approved to treat partial seizures. Partial seizures occur in just one part of the brain (as apposed to generalized seizures, which affect both sides of the brain). About 60 percent of people with epilepsy have partial seizures. Two types of partial seizures are:
- Simple partial seizures, in which a person will remain conscious but experience unusual feelings or sensations that can take many forms.
- Complex partial seizures, in which a person has a change or loss of consciousness. People having a complex partial seizure may display strange, repetitious behaviors such as blinks, twitches, mouth movements, or even walking in a circle.
Epilepsy treatments may include medications (see Epilepsy Medication), surgery (see Epilepsy Surgery), diet changes (see Epilepsy Diet), and biofeedback.