Depakote (Divalproex Sodium) Side Effects, Interactions

Depakote (divalproex sodium) is an anticonvulsant medication that can be used alone or in combination with other therapies for complete or partial seizures in adults and children 10 years of age or older.  Depakote (divalproex sodium) can be used for seizures that occur either in isolation or in association with other types of seizures, simple absence or complex. Simple absence seizures are defined as very brief clouding of the sensory system or loss of consciousness accompanied by generalized epileptic episodes without other detectable clinical signs. Complex absence is the term used when other signs are also present.


Depakote (divalproex sodium) can be use as sole or adjunct therapy to treat simple and complex absence seizures (petit mal). Depakote (divalproex sodium) is used as an adjunct therapy in multiple seizure patterns that include absence seizures. Depakote (divalproex sodium) can be used for the treatment of acute manic or mixed episodes with or without psychotic features associated with bipolar disorder.  Depakote (divalproex sodium) can also be used as a preventive measure for migraine headaches in adults. 


Dosage guidelines for Depakote (divalproex sodium) for the treatment of migraines are 250 mg twice a day for one week, and can be increased to 1,000 mg per day. For simple or complex seizures the initial dose is 15 mg per day until seizures are controlled or side effects occur. The recommended dose Depakote (divalproex sodium) is 60 mg per day, if the total daily dose exceeds 250 mg Depakote (divalproex sodium) should be given in divided doses.

Side Effects

Side effects are unlikely but have been reported while using Depakote (divalproex sodium) are diarrhea, dizziness, drowsiness, hair loss, blurred/double vision, change in menstrual periods, ringing in the ears, shakiness (tremor), unsteadiness, weight changes may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, notify your doctor or pharmacist immediately. Remember that your doctor has prescribed Depakote (divalproex sodium) because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects.

Questions for your Physician

Always consult your physician for any questions you may have about this Depakote (divalproex sodium) if there is information listed that you do not understand.

Drink plenty of water when taking Depakote (divalproex sodium) and, unless it states otherwise, never take your medicine on an empty stomach. It is helpful to establish a time each day to take this medicine to maintain consistency.

Please follow the directions closely when taking Depakote (divalproex sodium) as there are side effects.  Never allow anyone else to take Depakote without a prescription. If you have not taken all this medicine prescribed do not dispose of it down the toilet call your local poison Control office for direction for proper disposal.