Bipolar Disorder Home > What Is Lamotrigine Used For?

Lamotrigine is prescribed to treat epilepsy and bipolar disorder. While the drug is approved for controlling seizures in children with epilepsy, it is not approved to treat bipolar disorder in children. In addition, it is only used as a "maintenance" medication when used to treat bipolar disorder; it is not used to treat actual episodes of mania and depression. "Off-label" lamotrigine uses include the treatment of absence seizures.

What Is Lamotrigine Used For? -- An Overview

Lamotrigine (Lamictal®) is a prescription medication used to treat seizures in people with epilepsy. It is also used as a mood stabilizer to treat bipolar disorder.
 

Lamotrigine Uses for Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder, also known as manic depression, is a serious mental illness that causes extreme shifts in mood, energy, and functioning. Currently, it is thought that bipolar disorder may be at least partially genetic (see Bipolar Causes). Between episodes, most people with bipolar disorder are free of symptoms (see Bipolar Disorder Symptoms). Effective bipolar disorder treatment usually involves a combination of psychotherapy (see Bipolar Psychosocial Treatments) and bipolar medications.
 
Lamotrigine is approved as a "maintenance" treatment of bipolar disorder. This means that it is approved to help people with the condition keep their moods stable and to prevent episodes of mania and depression. It is not approved to treat these episodes themselves -- other medications may be more appropriate for treating acute episodes of mania or depression.
 
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Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
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