Should you have been prescribed Depakote / Depakene / Depacon / Stavzor?
According to the most recent (3/6/17 and 8/28/14) FDA drug labels for Depakote, Depakene, Depacon, and Stavzor, these drugs should be treated as drugs of last resort for female patients in some cases, due to the possible fetal side effects of “major congenital malformations, particularly neural tube defects (e.g., spina bifida)” and/or “decreased IQ scores.”
The FDA drug labels provide the following warning for women of childbearing age:
Valproate should not be administered to a woman of childbearing potential unless the drug is essential to the management of her medical condition. This is especially important when valproate use is considered for a condition not usually associated with permanent injury or death (e.g., migraine). Women should use effective contraception while using valproate.
In addition, they give the following warning for pregnant women with epilepsy or bipolar disorder:
Valproate should only be used to treat pregnant women with epilepsy or bipolar disorder if other medications have failed to control their symptoms or are otherwise unacceptable.
- Were you adequately warned about the possible side effects of Depakote, Depakene, Depacon, and Stavzor?