What should I know about primidone before taking it?

Primidone is an anticonvulsant used to prevent seizures and control essential tremor. Primidone can interact with some medications. When taken with the following, side effects including drowsiness and lack of coordination are increased: sodium oxybate; stripentol; and valporic acid. Primidone can decrease the effectiveness of the following: anticoagulants, beta-blockers, clozapine, corticosteroids, doxycycline, estrogen, hydantoins, metronidazole, oral contraceptives, quinidine, and theophylline. Primidone can cause drowsiness and vision changes, which can be aggravated by alcohol and other medications. You should not drive or operate machinery until you know how primidone affects you. Primidone may also contain Yellow Dye No. 5, which can cause an allergic reaction in some people. If you use oral contraceptives, it is important to know that primidone may decrease their effectiveness, and you should use a back up form of birth control, such as condoms, to prevent pregnancy. You should tell your doctor or dentist you are taking primidone before receiving any care, including dental surgery. Primidone may be harmful to an unborn child, although the benefits of use may outweigh the risks. If you are pregnant or breast feeding, discuss with your doctor the risks and benefits of using primidone.

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