Nervous System Home > Ethosuximide

Ethosuximide is a prescription medicine approved to treat a certain type of epileptic seizure called absence seizures. Side effects of the drug can include a loss of appetite, nausea, and diarrhea. The medication comes in the form of a capsule and as a syrup, and is usually taken once or twice a day. The dosage that your healthcare provider prescribes will be based on several factors, such as your age and weight, other medical conditions you have, and other medications you are taking.

What Is Ethosuximide?

Ethosuximide (Zarontin®) is a prescription medication used to treat absence seizures, a specific type of epileptic seizure. Absence seizures are also known as petit mal seizures.
(Click What Is Ethosuximide Used For? for more information on what the drug is used for, including possible off-label uses.)

Side Effects

As with any medicine, side effects are possible with ethosuximide. However, not everyone who takes the drug will experience side effects. In fact, most people tolerate it quite well. If side effects do occur, in most cases, they are minor and either require no treatment or can easily be treated by you or your healthcare provider. Serious side effects are less common.
Common side effects of ethosuximide include, but are not limited to:
  • Loss of appetite
  • Upset stomach
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Abdominal (or stomach) cramps or pain
  • Diarrhea.
(Click Side Effects of Ethosuximide to learn more, including potentially serious side effects that you should report immediately to your healthcare provider.) 
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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