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Depakote ER is an extended-release drug, also available as Divalproex Sodium ER generic, that can be prescribed to treat certain types of seizure disorders, including complex partial seizures as well as simple and complex absence seizures, or for the treatment of manic episodes for those with bipolar disorder. The generic alternative is not manufactured by the company that makes the brand product.
When taken as directed, Depakote ER will be converted into Valproic acid in your stomach where it is thought to work by increasing the concentration of gamma-aminobutyric acid, referred to as GABA in your brain. This neurotransmitter is needed for your nerves to communicate with each other so by increasing the amount of GABA, your excited nerve impulses become calm. This is beneficial for manic episodes as well as inhibiting the rapid firing of your neurons that can incite a seizure.
Epilepsy is not a mental illness nor can you “catch it” like a contagious disease. Having an epileptic seizure or fit is a result of abnormal signaling in your brain. Neurons create electro chemical impulses that act on other neurons, glands, and muscles in order to make human thoughts, feelings, and actions.
For those with epilepsy, the neuronal activity may be disturbed causing strange emotions and behavior, muscle spasms, and sometimes seizures and a loss of consciousness. Whether you are experiencing grand mal, complex partial, or absence seizures, Depakote ER can help you regain a sense of wellbeing.
In addition to treating some seizure disorders and bi-polar disorders, Depakote ER or generic Divalproex Sodium ER may also be prescribed by your doctor to prevent migraine headaches.
Depakote ER may interact with certain medicines so provide information about any OTC and Rx drug, herbal remedies, and dietary or vitamin supplements you currently take or use. Advise your doctor of other medical conditions or allergies you have and are being treated for. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, trying to become pregnant, or are breast feeding to know if Depakote ER is safe for you to take at this time.
Do not crush, chew, or break, or open a Depakote ER pill. Swallow it whole. Doing so can release all the medication at once; increasing the risk of side effects. You should not stop taking Depakote ER without first talking to your doctor as this can cause serious problems. Never share your medications with anyone else and keep all drugs out of children’s reach. Until you know how your body will react to Depakote ER, avoid any activities that require you to be alert.