Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

Pregnancy

Posted by on May. 4, 2014 at 11:58 AM
  • 5 Replies
I just found out yesterday that I'm pregnant. I also have JME (seizures). I take the medication called Keppra. Have you had a healthy normal baby with taking keppra?
by on May. 4, 2014 at 11:58 AM
Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Replies (1-5):
Pandapanda
by Amber on May. 4, 2014 at 12:12 PM

If a woman takes levetiracetam during pregnancy, will it hurt the baby ?

In the United States, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) assigns each medication to a Pregnancy Category according to whether it has been proven to be harmful in pregnancy. Levetiracetam is listed in Pregnancy Category C. This indicates that caution is advised, but the benefits of the medicine to the mother may outweigh the potential risks to the baby. Studies in animals have shown some harm to the baby, but there have been no good studies in women.

All women who are capable of becoming pregnant should take at least 0.4 mg (400 mcg) of the vitamin called folic acid every day because it helps to prevent specific birth defects called Neural Tube Defects. (The most well-known of these is spina bifida, in which the spinal cord is not completely enclosed.) Women with epilepsy should take between 1 and 4 mg of folic acid daily during their reproductive years. If the doctor thinks a woman is at especially high risk, the larger dose of folic acid—4 mg (4000 mcg) per day—may be recommended, beginning before the woman becomes pregnant.

Some babies born to mothers taking antiepileptic medications have had inadequate blood clotting within the first 24 hours after birth. It is often recommended that the mother be given 10 to 20 mg of vitamin K per day during the last month of pregnancy to prevent this problem.

About 20% to 35% of women have seizures more often during pregnancy because of changes in hormones or changes in how their seizure medicine is handled by the body. This appears to be particularly true for levetiracetam. Levetiracetam levels have been found to drop significantly and quickly in pregnant women. Your doctor will not only want to check levels of medicine in the blood regularly during pregnancy, but may want to increase your dose as soon as the pregnancy is discovered. Similarly, these changes revert back to normal just after delivery and your doctor will then again discuss with you how to begin lowering levetiracetam once the baby is born.

Levetiracetam in the mother’s blood passes nearly completely into breast milk, however how much of this actually enters the baby’s bloodstream is not known. Further, how levetiracetam affects the baby is unknown. That said, it is strongly felt by neurologists and epileptologists that the benefits of breastfeeding largely outweigh the risks of exposing the baby to antiepileptic medications, including levetiracetam. As a matter of fact, the American Academy of Neurology and the American Epilepsy Society both recommend breastfeeding in women with epilepsy.

- See more at: http://epilepsy.med.nyu.edu/treatment/medications/levetiracetam#sthash.P7jMFTvU.dpuf

booaura
by on May. 4, 2014 at 12:13 PM
1 mom liked this
Keppra is safe to take during pregnancy, we've sent more than one woman home with it, or loaded her up on it in the ER. Still, make sure to talk to your doctor about this.
Posted on CafeMom Mobile
DixonBabies
by Silver Member on May. 4, 2014 at 1:46 PM
1 mom liked this

Congrats on your pregnancy

kmqw229
by Ruby Member on May. 5, 2014 at 5:56 PM
Good info!!

Quoting Pandapanda:

If a woman takes levetiracetam during pregnancy, will it hurt the baby ?

In the United States, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) assigns each medication to a Pregnancy Category according to whether it has been proven to be harmful in pregnancy. Levetiracetam is listed in Pregnancy Category C. This indicates that caution is advised, but the benefits of the medicine to the mother may outweigh the potential risks to the baby. Studies in animals have shown some harm to the baby, but there have been no good studies in women.

All women who are capable of becoming pregnant should take at least 0.4 mg (400 mcg) of the vitamin called folic acid every day because it helps to prevent specific birth defects called Neural Tube Defects. (The most well-known of these is spina bifida, in which the spinal cord is not completely enclosed.) Women with epilepsy should take between 1 and 4 mg of folic acid daily during their reproductive years. If the doctor thinks a woman is at especially high risk, the larger dose of folic acid—4 mg (4000 mcg) per day—may be recommended, beginning before the woman becomes pregnant.

Some babies born to mothers taking antiepileptic medications have had inadequate blood clotting within the first 24 hours after birth. It is often recommended that the mother be given 10 to 20 mg of vitamin K per day during the last month of pregnancy to prevent this problem.

About 20% to 35% of women have seizures more often during pregnancy because of changes in hormones or changes in how their seizure medicine is handled by the body. This appears to be particularly true for levetiracetam. Levetiracetam levels have been found to drop significantly and quickly in pregnant women. Your doctor will not only want to check levels of medicine in the blood regularly during pregnancy, but may want to increase your dose as soon as the pregnancy is discovered. Similarly, these changes revert back to normal just after delivery and your doctor will then again discuss with you how to begin lowering levetiracetam once the baby is born.

Levetiracetam in the mother’s blood passes nearly completely into breast milk, however how much of this actually enters the baby’s bloodstream is not known. Further, how levetiracetam affects the baby is unknown. That said, it is strongly felt by neurologists and epileptologists that the benefits of breastfeeding largely outweigh the risks of exposing the baby to antiepileptic medications, including levetiracetam. As a matter of fact, the American Academy of Neurology and the American Epilepsy Society both recommend breastfeeding in women with epilepsy.

- See more at: http://epilepsy.med.nyu.edu/treatment/medications/levetiracetam#sthash.P7jMFTvU.dpuf

Posted on CafeMom Mobile
ciaras_mom_05
by on May. 5, 2014 at 10:06 PM
1 mom liked this
No advice but congrats and here's a bump :)
Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)