Are Gardinel, Epilex and Carnitor safe drugs for controlling fits and jerks?
Q: My two months old daughter has been diagnosed with hypoglycaemic-hypoxic injury in her brain. We got her MRI test done which shows injuries in the parietal lobes and occipital lobes of brain. She is getting fits and jerks. Initially the doctor started with Gardinal tablet one-fourth (30 mg) in morning and half (30 mg) in evening. But this didn't control her fits and jerks. The doctor then increased the dose to one-third tablet in morning and half the tablet in evening. This dose lessened the fits but didn't fully stop the fits. Now the doctor has started with Epilex 1 ml in morning and evening. She hadn't got fits and jerks after the start of this medicine. I want to ask why is the doctor giving her Gardinal with Epilex, when Gardinal didn't control her fits? Also, the doctor has prescribed Carnitor drug for her. Is this a safe drug?
A:It is quite likely the pattern of fits will change since the time they first started. If she is having body jerks, head drops , or frequent eye blinking, then she might be suffering form Myoclonic Epilepsy, and Epilex would be the drug of choice. Obtaining an EEG will also help in determining which drug would be best. Carnitor is to block the carnitine deficiency that may occur in patients receiving Epilex. Hence, it is a safe medication. You should be prepared that your neurologist will increase the dose of medications if the seizures increase or are not controlled. It may be possible, too, that he may want to use other medications or steroids if the jerks are uncontrolled and evolve into Infantile Spasms. At the same time, get a developmental and hearing assessment done.