Thursday, May 13, 2021

Levetiracetam - pregnancy considerations


Levetiracetam, used primarily for seizures control, is also used off-label for SAH, status epilepticus, seizure prophylaxis in craniotomy and traumatic brain injury.

Dosing is increased in pregnancy and closely monitored regularly due to various physiologic effects, especially in third trimester. (levitate dose of levetiracetam) :-

- increased volume of distribution, Vd (increase in plasma volume, CO)

- increased renal excretion (increase in GFR; levitate the rate)

- rapid and almost complete absorption via GIT  (unlike other drugs with decreased absorption in pregnancy)

- low risk of adverse effects and fetal malformations when used in monotherapy. (low with mono, high with poly)

- Levetiracetam is NOT metabolized by liver; Cyt P450 independent. Bioavailability 100%. (unlike other antiepileptics - hepatic metabolism increases in pregnancy)

Levetiracetam crosses placenta and can be detected in the newborn. (leve leaves mother)

The newborns are at greater risk of SGA and low APGAR score.

Protein-binding of the drug is low (<10%). So, decrease in albumin concentration during pregnancy does not significantly affect the drug concentration. (low pro)

That's all

- Jaskunwar Singh

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