It’s a prescription drug used to treat focal onset seizures in adults and some children. (These are also called partial onset seizures.)
For this condition, you may use Oxtellar XR alone or in combination with other epilepsy drugs.
To learn more, see the “What is Oxtellar XR used for?” section below.
Oxtellar XR basics
Oxtellar XR belongs to a group of drugs called antiepileptics. It comes as an extended-release (long-acting) tablet that you swallow.
The active ingredient in Oxtellar XR is oxcarbazepine. (An active ingredient is what makes a drug work.) It’s not available in a generic form.
Read on to learn more about Oxtellar XR’s side effects, dosage, and more.
Like most drugs, Oxtellar XR may cause mild or serious side effects. The lists below describe some of the more common side effects that Oxtellar XR may cause. These lists don’t include all possible side effects.
Keep in mind that side effects of a drug can depend on:
- your age
- other health conditions you have
- other medications you take
Your doctor or pharmacist can tell you more about the potential side effects of Oxtellar XR. They can also suggest ways to help reduce side effects.
Mild side effects
Here’s a list of some of the mild side effects Oxtellar XR can cause. To learn about other mild side effects, talk with your doctor or pharmacist, or read Oxtellar XR’s prescribing information.
Mild side effects of Oxtellar XR that have been reported include:
- fatigue (low energy)
- nausea, vomiting, or belly pain
- double vision
- problems with balance
- weight gain
- mild allergic reaction*
* To learn more about this side effect, see the “Allergic reaction” section below.
Mild side effects of many drugs may go away within a few days to a couple of weeks. But if they become bothersome, talk with your doctor or pharmacist.
Serious side effects
Serious side effects from Oxtellar XR can occur, but they aren’t common. If you have serious side effects from Oxtellar XR, call your doctor right away. But if you think you’re having a medical emergency, you should call 911 or your local emergency number.
Serious side effects of Oxtellar XR that have been reported include:
- blood disorders, such as a low level of white blood cells
- low level of sodium in the blood
- severe skin reactions, such as Stevens-Johnson syndrome and toxic epidermal necrolysis
- seizures other than the kind Oxtellar XR is approved to treat
- increased risk of suicidal thoughts or behaviors
- severe allergic reaction*
* To learn more about this side effect, see the “Allergic reaction” section below.
Help is out there
If you or someone you know is in crisis and considering suicide or self-harm, please seek support:
- Call the 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline at 988.
- Text HOME to the Crisis Textline at 741741.
- Not in the United States? Find a helpline in your country with Befrienders Worldwide.
- Call 911 or your local emergency services number if you feel safe to do so.
If you’re calling on behalf of someone else, stay with them until help arrives. You may remove weapons or substances that can cause harm if you can do so safely.
If you are not in the same household, stay on the phone with them until help arrives.
Some people may have an allergic reaction to Oxtellar XR.
Allergic reaction wasn’t reported in studies of Oxtellar XR. But this side effect has been reported with other forms of oxcarbazepine, which is the active ingredient in Oxtellar XR. (An active ingredient is what makes a drug work.)
Symptoms of a mild allergic reaction can include:
A more severe allergic reaction is rare but possible. Symptoms of a severe allergic reaction can include swelling under your skin, usually in your eyelids, lips, hands, or feet. They can also include swelling of your tongue, mouth, or throat, which can cause trouble breathing.
Call your doctor right away if you have an allergic reaction to Oxtellar XR. But if you think you’re having a medical emergency, call 911 or your local emergency number.
Find answers below to some commonly asked questions about Oxtellar XR.
Is Oxtellar XR available as a generic drug?
No, Oxtellar XR is not available as a generic drug.
Oxtellar XR contains extended-release (long-acting) oxcarbazepine as its active ingredient. (An active ingredient is what makes a drug work.) The extended-release form of oxcarbazepine does not come as a generic. But immediate-release (short-acting) forms of oxcarbazepine are available in generic form.
If you’re interested in using a generic form of oxcarbazepine, talk with your doctor. They’ll tell you whether the generic form can be used to treat your condition.
Can Oxtellar XR be used to treat trigeminal neuralgia?
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has not approved Oxtellar XR to treat trigeminal neuralgia (TN). At this time, the FDA has only approved Oxtellar XR to treat focal onset seizures. For more about this use, see the “What is Oxtellar XR used for?” section below.
With TN, you have pain in one or both of the trigeminal nerves, which are located on each side of your face. The pain is usually triggered by routine daily activities, such as eating, drinking, or brushing your teeth.
While TN is not an approved use for Oxtellar XR, doctors may prescribe the drug off-label for this purpose. With off-label use, a drug that’s been approved by the FDA for one use is prescribed for an unapproved use.
Although the FDA regulates the testing and approval of drugs, it does not regulate how doctors prescribe medications. So your doctor can prescribe a drug however they think is best for your care. This may include prescribing Oxtellar XR for the treatment of TN. Examples of other possible off-label uses for Oxtellar XR include treating bipolar disorder or other types of nerve pain.
To learn more about Oxtellar XR, TN, and off-label uses, talk with your doctor.
How does Oxtellar XR compare with Trileptal for treating my condition?
Both Oxtellar XR and Trileptal are approved to treat focal onset seizures in adults and some children.
Both drugs contain oxcarbazepine as their active ingredient. Oxtellar XR contains an extended-release form of the drug, while Trileptal contains an immediate-release form.
Oxtellar XR is usually taken once per day, while Trileptal is usually taken twice per day.
To learn more about how Oxtellar XR compares with Trileptal, talk with your doctor or pharmacist.
How long does Oxtellar XR stay in a person’s body?
Oxtellar XR stays in your body for about 1.5 to 2 days after you take it.
Oxtellar XR’s half-life can be used to determine how long the drug stays in your system. (A drug’s half-life is the amount of time it takes your body to get rid of half of a dose.)
The half-life of Oxtellar XR is about 7 to 11 hours. It takes about five half-lives for a drug to leave your system entirely. This means Oxtellar XR stays in your system for about 35 to 55 hours after you take it.
If you have other questions about how long Oxtellar XR stays in your body, talk with your doctor.
Your doctor will recommend the dosage of Oxtellar XR that’s right for you. Below are commonly used dosages, but always take the dosage your doctor prescribes.
Form and strengths
Oxtellar XR comes as an extended-release (long-acting) tablet that you swallow.
It’s available in three strengths: 150 milligrams (mg), 300 mg, and 600 mg.
Your doctor will usually start you on a low dose of Oxtellar XR. They’ll adjust it over time until you reach the dose that treats your condition without causing bothersome side effects.
Your Oxtellar XR dosage will be based on several factors, including:
- your age
- how well your condition is responding to the drug
- other medical conditions you have, such as kidney problems
- other medications you’re taking
- body weight (for children taking the drug)
Oxtellar XR is used to treat focal onset seizures in adults and children ages 6 years and older.
Keep reading to learn about the adult and child dosages for Oxtellar XR.
For adults, the usual starting dosage of Oxtellar XR is 600 mg once per day. After 1 week, your doctor may increase your dosage. The usual dosage range for Oxtellar XR is 1,200 mg to 2,400 mg once per day.
For a child, Oxtellar XR’s dosage is based on their weight in kilograms (kg). One kg is about 2.2 pounds (lb). They’ll usually take the drug once per day.
Your child’s doctor can recommend the dosage that’s right for your child based on their body weight.
Questions about Oxtellar XR’s dosing
Below are some common questions about Oxtellar XR’s dosing.
- What if I miss a dose of Oxtellar XR? If you miss a dose of Oxtellar XR, talk with your doctor. They can tell you whether to take the missed dose or skip it.
- Will I need to use Oxtellar XR long term? Yes, most likely. You may take Oxtellar XR long term if the drug is working for you and it isn’t causing bothersome side effects. Your doctor will tell you how long you should take Oxtellar XR.
- How long does Oxtellar XR take to work? Oxtellar XR starts working right away to treat your condition. But it may take a couple of weeks after you start taking Oxtellar XR for your seizures to decrease.
Oxtellar XR is used to treat focal onset seizures in adults and children ages 6 years and older. These seizures are also called partial onset seizures.
Seizures are thought to occur because of unusual electrical activity in the brain. With focal onset seizures, the seizure begins on one side of the brain.
Focal onset seizures may cause a variety of symptoms. These depend on the area of the brain where the seizure occurs.
Examples of possible symptoms include:
- nausea or belly pain
- hallucinations (hearing or seeing things that aren’t there)
- vision changes, such as seeing bright flashes of light
- unusual movements of the eyes or head
- moments of alternating muscle spasms followed by muscle relaxation
- repetitive movements, such as staring into space, smacking your lips, or picking at your skin
For this condition, you may use Oxtellar XR as monotherapy (by itself) or in combination with other epilepsy drugs.
The cost of prescription drugs can vary depending on many factors. These factors include what your insurance plan covers and which pharmacy you use.
If you have questions about how to pay for your prescription, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. You may be eligible for a program called Supernus Support, which could lower the cost of Oxtellar XR.
You can also check out this article to learn more about saving money on prescriptions.
Before you start taking Oxtellar XR, it’s important to discuss your treatment plan with your doctor. Talk with them about your overall health, medical conditions you have, and medications you take. This will help them determine whether the drug is a good option for your condition.
These considerations and others are described below.
Taking a medication with certain vaccines, foods, and other things can affect how the medication works. These effects are called interactions.
Before taking Oxtellar XR, be sure to tell your doctor about all medications you take, including prescription and over-the-counter kinds. Also describe any vitamins, herbs, or supplements you use. Your doctor or pharmacist can tell you about any interactions these items may cause with Oxtellar XR.
For information about drug-condition interactions, see the “Warnings” section below.
Interactions with drugs or supplements
Oxtellar XR can interact with several types of drugs. These include:
- certain other antiepileptic drugs, such as:
- phenytoin (Dilantin, Phenytek)
- carbamazepine (Carbatrol, Tegretol, others)
- birth control pills
- the tuberculosis drug rifampin (Rifadin, Rimactane)
This list does not contain all of the kinds of drugs that may interact with Oxtellar XR. Your doctor or pharmacist can tell you more about these interactions and any others that may occur while taking Oxtellar XR.
Oxtellar XR can sometimes cause harmful effects in people who have certain conditions. This is known as a drug-condition interaction. Other factors may also affect whether Oxtellar XR is a good treatment option for you.
Talk with your doctor about your health history before you take Oxtellar XR. Factors to consider include those described below.
Severe liver problems. It isn’t known whether Oxtellar XR is safe for people with severe liver problems. Before starting Oxtellar XR, tell your doctor if you have a severe liver problem, such as liver failure. Your doctor may prescribe a drug other than Oxtellar XR for you.
Kidney problems. Before starting Oxtellar XR, tell your doctor if you have a kidney problem, such as kidney failure. Your doctor may prescribe a lower dosage of Oxtellar XR than usual.
Allergic reaction to Oxtellar XR or similar drugs. Tell your doctor if you’ve had an allergic reaction to Oxtellar XR or any of its ingredients. Also tell them if you’ve had an allergic reaction to eslicarbazepine acetate (Aptiom) or carbamazepine (Carbatrol, Tegretol, others).
If you’ve had an allergic reaction to any of these medications or ingredients, your doctor will likely not prescribe Oxtellar XR. Ask your doctor whether other medications are better options for you.
Asian ancestry with certain genetic differences. Before starting treatment with Oxtellar XR, your doctor may have you get a blood test that checks for a gene mutation (change) called HLA-B*1502. This mutation may occur in people of Asian ancestry.
People with this mutation have a higher risk of serious skin reactions with Oxtellar XR. If you have the HLA-B*1502 mutation, your doctor will likely not prescribe Oxtellar XR. Your doctor can recommend a different treatment option for your seizures.
Oxtellar XR and alcohol
Oxtellar XR is not known to interact with alcohol. But drinking alcohol could worsen certain side effects of the drug. Examples include sleepiness, dizziness, and fatigue (low energy).
If you drink alcohol, talk with your doctor about an amount that’s safe for you to drink while taking Oxtellar XR.
Pregnancy and breastfeeding
Below is information about taking Oxtellar XR while pregnant or breastfeeding.
Oxtellar XR and pregnancy
It may not be safe to take Oxtellar XR during pregnancy. Oxtellar XR may cause side effects in infants born to someone who takes the drug while pregnant. This includes cleft palate and cleft lip or a hole in the heart.
If you’re pregnant or planning a pregnancy, talk with your doctor before taking Oxtellar XR. They may recommend a different drug for your condition.
If you do take Oxtellar XR during pregnancy, consider enrolling in the North American Antiepileptic Drug Pregnancy Registry. This registry collects information about the safety of antiepileptic drugs, including Oxtellar XR, when used during pregnancy.
To learn more, talk with your doctor, call 888-233-2334, or visit the registry’s website.
Oxtellar XR and breastfeeding
Oxtellar XR passes into breast milk. But it isn’t known whether the drug may cause side effects in a breastfed child.
If you have questions about taking Oxtellar XR while breastfeeding, talk with your doctor.
Your doctor will explain how you should take Oxtellar XR. They’ll also explain how much to take and how often. Be sure to follow your doctor’s instructions.
Taking Oxtellar XR
Oxtellar XR comes as a tablet that you swallow.
Accessible medication containers and labels
If it’s hard for you to read the label on your prescription, tell your doctor or pharmacist. Certain pharmacies may provide medication labels that:
- have large print
- use braille
- contain a code you can scan with a smartphone to change the text into audio
Your doctor or pharmacist may be able to recommend a pharmacy that offers these options if your current pharmacy doesn’t.
Also, if you’re having trouble opening your medication bottles, let your pharmacist know. They may be able to put Oxtellar XR in an easy-open container. Your pharmacist may also recommend tools to help make it simpler to open the drug’s container.
Taking Oxtellar XR with other drugs
Examples of other epilepsy drugs include levetiracetam (Elepsia XR, Keppra) and lamotrigine (Lamictal, Lamictal XR).
Your doctor will recommend the combination of drugs that’s best for you.
Questions about taking Oxtellar XR
Below are some common questions about taking Oxtellar XR.
- Can Oxtellar XR be chewed, crushed, or split? No, you’ll swallow Oxtellar XR tablets whole. You won’t chew, crush, or split them. If you have trouble swallowing these tablets, talk with your doctor or pharmacist.
- Should I take Oxtellar XR with food? No, you should take Oxtellar XR on an empty stomach. You’ll take the drug at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after eating.
- Is there a best time of day to take Oxtellar XR? No, there isn’t a best time of day to take Oxtellar XR. You can take your dose any time of day. But try to take it at about the same time each day. Doing so may keep a steady level of the drug in your body. This helps Oxtellar XR work effectively.
Questions for your doctor
You may have questions about Oxtellar XR and your treatment plan. It’s important to discuss all your concerns with your doctor.
Here are a few tips that might help guide your discussion:
- Before your appointment, write down questions such as:
- How will Oxtellar XR affect my body, mood, or lifestyle?
- Bring someone with you to your appointment if doing so will help you feel more comfortable.
- If you don’t understand something related to your condition or treatment, ask your doctor to explain it to you.
Remember, your doctor and other healthcare professionals are available to help you. And they want you to get the best care possible. So don’t be afraid to ask questions or offer feedback on your treatment.
Do not take more Oxtellar XR than your doctor prescribes. Using more than this can lead to serious side effects.
Symptoms of overdose
Symptoms caused by an overdose can include:
- nausea and vomiting
- tremors or convulsions
- low blood pressure
- blurry vision or double vision
- lack of coordination
- agitation or aggression
What to do in case you take too much Oxtellar XR
Call your doctor if you think you’ve taken too much Oxtellar XR. You can also call 800-222-1222 to reach the American Association of Poison Control Centers or use its online resource. But if you have severe symptoms, immediately call 911 or your local emergency number. Or go to the nearest emergency room.
If you have questions about taking Oxtellar XR, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. Questions you may want to ask include:
- What other epilepsy drugs should I take with Oxtellar XR?
- Should I follow a certain seizure diet while taking Oxtellar XR?
- Will my seizures come back if I stop using Oxtellar XR?
Below are resources you might find helpful for learning about other treatments for epilepsy:
- Epilepsy and Seizure Medications List
- What is Responsive Neurostimulation (RNS) for Epilepsy?
- Natural Treatments for Epilepsy: Do They Work?
To get information on different conditions and tips for improving your health, subscribe to any of Healthline’s newsletters. You may also want to check out the online communities at Bezzy. It’s a place where people with certain conditions can find support and connect with others.
Disclaimer: Healthline has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up to date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or another healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.