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What If I Overdose on Phenytoin?

People who take too much phenytoin may have overdose symptoms that could include:
 
  • Unusual eye movements
  • Coordination problems
  • Joint pain
  • Shakiness (tremors)
  • Overactive reflexes
  • Lethargy
  • Slurred speech
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Coma
  • Low blood pressure
  • Loss of life.
     
If you happen to overdose, seek medical attention immediately.
 
(Click Dilantin Overdose for more information.)
 

How Should It Be Stored?

The medication should be stored at room temperature, away from moisture and heat. It should be stored in an airtight container.
 
Keep phenytoin and all other medications out of the reach of children.
 

What Should I Do If I Miss a Dose?

If you do not take your phenytoin as scheduled, take your missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and continue with your regular schedule. Do not take a double dose. Be sure to tell your healthcare provider if you miss any of your phenytoin doses, as this information may be helpful for adjusting your dosage.
 

Alternatives to Phenytoin

There are several alternatives to phenytoin for controlling seizures. These alternatives can include other seizure medications (see Epilepsy Medication), surgery (see Epilepsy Surgery), or even -- in some cases -- a special diet (see Epilepsy Diet).
 
While phenytoin is often effective and many people tolerate it well, it does not work for everyone. It may also cause side effects. With so many different treatment options for epilepsy, people should not settle for treatment that is not effective enough for them or that causes bothersome side effects.
 
(Click Dilantin Alternatives for more information.)
 
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
List of references (click here):
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