The safety of levetiracetam

Deepa Sirsi, Joseph E. Safdieh

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

54 Scopus citations


Levetiracetam is an antiepileptic drug approved for use as an adjunct agent in partial-onset seizures in adults and children aged ≥ 4 years. It was also approved as adjunctive therapy in the treatment of adults and adolescents aged ≥ 12 years with juvenile myoclonic epilepsy. A parenteral intravenous formulation has recently become available allowing for its use when oral administration is temporarily not feasible. Available literature has demonstrated and supported that levetiracetam has an acceptable safety profile and this review discusses the safety profile of levetiracetam, with attention to special populations. The most common adverse effects are somnolence, asthenia and dizziness, which usually appear early after initiation of levetiracetam therapy and generally resolve without medication withdrawal. The most serious adverse effects are behavioral in nature and are more common in children and in patients with a prior history of behavioral problems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)241-250
Number of pages10
JournalExpert Opinion on Drug Safety
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 1 2007


  • Adverse effects
  • Behavioral effects
  • Keppra
  • Levetiracetam
  • Safety
  • Side effects

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology (medical)


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