Depakote® (divalproex sodium) is a prescription antipsychotic medicine approved for several different uses. A few studies have evaluated the effects of Depakote.
In one study, Depakote was compared to lithium (Lithobid®, Eskalith®) or a "sugar pill" (placebo) to treat people who were hospitalized with an episode of mania. After three weeks, those taking Depakote had at least as much improvement in bipolar symptoms as those taking lithium (and more improvement compared to those taking a "sugar pill").
Another study looked at the effects that Depakote had on preventing migraines. Those not taking Depakote experienced an average of almost six migraines in four weeks, while people taking it had only three to four migraines (on average).
In one study, Depakote was added on to other seizure medications in people with complex partial seizures that were not adequately controlled. Those who added Depakote to their seizure medications decreased their seizure frequency, compared to those who did not take the drug. Other studies have shown that using Depakote alone is also effective for complex partial seizures.
(Click Depakote to learn more about specific Depakote effects, for information on how the medicine works, and to find out what you should discuss with your healthcare provider before starting treatment.)
Written by/reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Food and Drug Administration, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. Electronic orange book: approved drug products with therapeutic equivalence evaluations. FDA Web site. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/cder/ob/. Accessed August 8, 2008.
Briggs GG, Freeman RK, Yaffe SJ. Drugs in Pregnancy and Lactation. 7th ed. Philadelphia (PA): Lippincott Williams & Wilkins;2005.
National Library of Medicine (US). Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMED). NLM Web site. Available at: http://toxnet.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/sis/htmlgen?LACT. Accessed May 30, 2007.
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