Tegretol Side Effects

by on July 26, 2012


Common side effects associated with the use of Tegretol include unsteadiness, drowsiness, nausea, dry mouth and vomiting. If you experience any of these side effects on a continual basis while using Tegretol, it is best to consult with your doctor.

Common Tegretol Side Effects

The most common side effects of Tegretol (Carbamazepine)  include the following:

  • Nausea
  • Dry mouth
  • Vomiting
  • Drowsiness
  • Dizziness

While these side effects may not be life threatening, it is important to monitor them closely and contact your doctor immediately if they continue or become worse. By doing this, your doctor may be able to advise you on ways to alleviate these symptoms. If any of the abovementioned symptoms worsen, you should contact your doctor immediately so that alternative options may be explored.

Serious Tegretol Side Effects

While not everyone experiences side effects as a result of using Tegretol, it is important to seek medical assistance immediately should the patient experience any of the following side effects:

  • Fevers
  • Sore throat
  • Hallucinations
  • Abnormal bleeding or bruising
  • Depression
  • Suicidal thoughts or ideas
  • Arrhythmia (irregular heartbeat)
  • Worsening of seizures
  • Severe mood swings
  • Difficulty in passing urine
  • Hives
  • An unexplained rash on the body
  • Severe itching
  • Swelling of any part of the body
  • Muscle spasms
  • Yellowing of the eyes or skin (Jaundice)
  • High blood pressure
  • Low blood pressure
  • Water retention or difficulty with breathing (this can be a sign of congestive heart failure)
  • Hyponatremia (low sodium levels in the blood)
  • Excessive tiredness
  • Appetite loss
  • Confusion
  • Irritability
  • Tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
  • White sores or patches in the mouth and on the lips

Young Children

Before prescribing Tegretol to children, it is very important that a correct diagnosis be made. This is because of the fact that children’s bodies process Tegretol a lot faster than adults do. As a result, young children are normally prescribed higher doses than teenagers and adults. By the time they reach their early teens though, the dosage needs to be adjusted to that of an adult.

Children may experience side effects such as double vision, drowsiness or dizziness when using Tegretol. If any of these symptoms persist, it is important for the child’s doctor to be consulted.

Preexisting Conditions

Patients should under no circumstances make use of Tegretol if they are allergic to any of its ingredients. Patients who are using any other form of herbal or pharmaceutical medication should consult with their doctor before using this medication. If the patient has ever experienced allergic reactions to other seizure medications, they should refrain from using Tegretol. Any form of cardiovascular condition can be further aggravated by the use of Tegretol, so patients who have a history of cardiovascular conditions should also avoid using it. Tegretol may also have an effect on patients who suffer from high blood pressure and/or high cholesterol levels.


If Tegretol is taken during pregnancy, there may be the risk of harming the unborn baby, but the FDA has stated that the benefits that expectant mothers receive from using this medication may outweigh the risk that it poses to the baby. Most defects occur during the first trimester of the pregnancy, so the risk is at its highest during that time. The majority of women who make use of Tegretol during pregnancy go on to have healthy babies. If a doctor suspects that a pregnant woman may be at higher risk of harming her unborn baby by using Tegretol, he may prescribe a higher dose of folic acid in order to counter the risk.

Other Medications

If a patient is given a prescription for Tegretol, it is very important for them to disclose any other medications which they may be using to their doctor. This is because certain medications can interact with Tegretol and cause the following serious side effects:

  • Antibiotics and antifungal treatments (Biaxin, Nizoral, Sporanox, Diflucan)
  • Calcium channel blockers (Norvasc, Plendil, Isoptin SR, Cardizem)
  • Eskalith (Lithium supplements)
  • Any hormone contraceptives such as patches or birth control pills
  • Grapefruit juice
  • Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors (MAOI’s) such as Nardil, Parnate, Zelapar and Marplan
  • Other seizure medications
  • Protease Inhibitors such as Norvir, Agenerase and Crixivan

When using Tegretol, it is also important for the patient to avoid alcohol and antipsychotic medications, as they may cause too little or too much Tegretol to be released into the body which may lead to other side effects being experienced. If the patient is on any of the above forms of medication or experiences any of the abovementioned side effects, it is important for them to advise their doctor immediately so that alternative options can be explored.