Potiga Approved for Adult Epileptic Seizures

But drug may cause 'neuro-psychiatric' side effects, FDA says

MONDAY, June 13, 2011 (HealthDay News) -- Potiga (ezogabine) tablets have been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to treat partial epileptic seizures in adults, the agency said Monday.

Partial seizures are the most common seizure in people who have epilepsy, the FDA said in a news release. The agency said Potiga is the first among a class of drugs called neueronal potassium channel openers to be sanctioned for epilepsy in the United States.

Potiga may cause "neuro-psychiatric symptoms, including confusion, hallucinations and psychotic symptoms," which usually subside within seven days of stopping the drug, the FDA said. Potiga may also lead to urinary retention, or difficulty fully emptying the bladder.

And as is the case with other antiepileptic drugs, the agency said Potiga "may also cause suicidal thoughts or actions in a very small number of people." Those taking the drug should contact a physician if they have thoughts of suicide or dying, or worsening symptoms of anxiety or depression, the FDA warned.

Potiga was developed by North Carolina-based Valeant Pharmaceuticals North America, and will be distributed by GlaxoSmithKline, based in Research Triangle, N.C.

More information

To learn more about epilepsy, visit the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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