Q: I just picked up a pamphlet at a doctor’s office the other day regarding osteoporosis and it stated that any anti-convulsant medication causes bone density loss. Is that correct?

A: There are certain drugs that unfortunately do accelerate bone loss, and anti-convulsants are one of them. These drugs accelerate bone remodeling, but according to studies, there are no significant detrimental results for most patients.

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  1. Tania M

    I’ve tried supplements for afew years now Vit. d and calcium) and have progressed from osteopoenia to osteoporosis

    • T McElrea

      that is Ive been on tegretol almost 40 years, also, i’m 50 going on 51

  2. Wendy Hughes

    I was diagnosed with Epilepsy in 1997. I took Tegritol XR 1200mg per day for 16 years. About 4 years ago, when I went to my neurologist for a check up and she switched me to Keppra because she said Tegritol can lead to osteoporosis. The damage was already done. I had a bone scan 10 years ago and they said my bones were great. I’m also a fitness instructor and do a lot of weight training. I had another bone scan this year and I have low bone density and osteopenia in my right femur. I also have bi-lateral stenosis and had to have 3 level ACDF surgery in my neck and epidural injections for my lumbar spine. I am not happy that my doctor did not take me off the Tegritol earlier. When I started taking it it was relatively new and the safest medication for me to take while I was pregnant. I would have thought that when the new studies came out that she would have contacted me and switched me. I’m only 50 years old.

  3. Mary Lee

    I have been taking anticonvulsant for 50 years. I am now taking Keppra and am very well controlled, but have lost a lot with my bones… I am 69 and having difficulty walking

  4. W. macdonald

    My daughter at 18 months was diagnosed with hip dysplaysia for which she has had several operations. We then found she has a vitamin D deficiency, which has been treated twice, with no further follow ups. At three she developed status Epileptica and has had four 45 min seizures in three years. After second seizure she was placed on Tegrotol which does seem to work as no seizure for 11 months. But I have just read that this medication can cause brittle bones what should I do? We tried Keppra but didn’t agree with her and made her very aggressive. any advice appreciated. Very worried mum….

    • Lee

      I have been an epileptic for 45years and the tablet that has helped me all those years is Mysoline.
      The doctors have wanted to change it because it’s an old tablet.
      I won’t let them.
      I think of this saying, if it’s not broken you don’t try and fix it.
      I won’t rick the fact my life might not be the same again should I change it.
      Hope this helps.

    • Catherine

      Your daughter should take vitamin d3 tablets. Carbamazepine stimulates the liver to produce an enzyme which effectively strips vitamin d from the body. The only way to overcome this is to take vitamin d3 supplements. Your doctor should be prescribing these to your daughter, otherwise you can order them online. About 2000 iu a day should cover her. Also take calcium. Do not take these within four hours or so of taking her epilepsy medication.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Hi W.,

      It certainly sounds like you have a lot on your plate, and as a mother myself, I understand the worry! However, if you feel your daughter must take this medication, then that’s all the more reason to emphasize a healthful, pH-balanced diet for her so as to offset the bone-damaging effects of the drug as much as possible. Healthful diets are certainly applicable for children, too!

  5. JACOB

    I have been suffering from these epileptic seizures and have taken different medications under treatment from professionally qualified neurologist. Now I take Lamotrigine tabs along with Frisium. symptoms are under control to a certain extent but still not free from seizures. Now many a time when it happens I become unconscious, unable to remember what exactly happened during that few seconds or a minute until somebody beside me explains it to me.
    I do have now lower back pain since a few months back. This could be osteoporosis. I take calcium supplement with Vitamin D. Life is just going on without any unbearable pain symptoms.

  6. ann watts

    “What do you think about this drug?”
    :
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    But the benefits of lactoferrin go far beyond bone health.

    Natural health experts say that anyone struggling with wear and tear or chronic low-grade infections, such as recurring Candida or periodontal problems, should consider supplementing with lactoferrin.

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    • Mary Fennelly

      Hello! Dr. Pendergast,

      Why do all anti-epileptic accelerate bone loss, what is consistently put into the drug when pharmacuetical companies know the damage these cause long term. Epilepsy is not like a cold/flu which will just pass off and although they find new drugs using RATS and MICE, that makes it OK! Epileptics, they are only Guinea Pigs after all. But when it comes to other diseases the pharmacuetical company will try to bring out new treatment and drugs that do Not cause such side effects or long term damaging side effects. As far as I can see, pharmacuetical companies Do Not have the will to find better drugs which far less or No side effects. In someways I would tell a person with epilepsy never to touch AEDs.

      Thank you for listening to my views,
      Mary Fennelly.

  7. Marilyn Davies

    I have taken Tegretol for many many years now and just been diagnosed with osteoporosis – quite severe. I have two long standing spinal fractures and am 62 years old. Is there any way by changing complete diet (which wasn’t real bad to begin with) AND by taking extra Vitamin D and Calcium in supplements along with this that the total combination of diet (calcium) – Alkaline diet – and the supplements will counteract the affects of the Tegretol? I have option but to continue to take the drug.

    • Vivian Goldschmidt, MA

      Marilyn, you can’t go wrong by adopting as healthy a lifestyle as possible, especially one that is designed to build bones like the Osteoporosis Reversal Program. 🙂 There are too many individual variables to say just what the Program would do for you, but I firmly believe that you can counteract a medication’s effects with good nutrition and regular exercise. Best wishes moving forward!

  8. joseph brown

    I had a mountain bike injury that fractured my femur with a hairline fracture and there the doctors are saying itès unusual fracture at this age of 36. I drink 4 cups of coffee a day because of what i do for a living of being up all night. I would like to start a petition on bone loss through taking tegretal or any other anti culvulsive medication. If this medication does cause bone desity loss we should have been inforfmed by are gp.

  9. Eddie

    I’d Greatly Appreciate talking with Anybody who’s been taking Anticonvulsant’s for year’s,around 20 & has expereinced serious Bone Pain’s like I now am,I have God in My Life & it’s beyond Obvious that what control’s the Medical World within this Country does’nt just knowing the Problem’s I Resolved on My own.,The FDA’s Money Player’s & I Feel when the Controller’s of the FDA meet’s up with God on Judgement Day they’re not going to be too Happy with the Outcome they made all by themselve’s-“50 year’s of Money for Eternity in Hell,not to Pretty of a Tradeoff huh?”,But a well Deserved one seeing what They’re doing too Every form of Life in this Country too fill thier Heartless Wallet’s

  10. Andy

    I am a 38 year old man. I have had nocturnal seizures since I was baout 12 years old. I took Tegretol for almost 20 years, until a new Dr. finally told me about bone loss (which nobody ever did in all the past Doctors I’ve had.) I have had two bone tests since then, and I do have osteoporosis. I am not the type of person who sues people, but this is pretty close! I take calcium now of course, and have never broken a bone in my life. I ski, ride mountain bikes, climb, etc. But I am a bit worried that this bone loss will catch up with me in 20 years or so. Any thoughts anyone? Who else has nocturnal seizures only?

    • Aimee

      By i have had nocturnal siezures for38 years …im 42 and now living with bone density loss and a rare hip disease and arthritis in my shoulder that my doctors tell me looks like a 65 year olds…i vet so angry thinking of all the AEDs im on and the havic they’ve caused on my body….i wish i knew what vitamins and foods to eat to slow this down..i live with siezures every night i just want to be as healthy as possible. ..

  11. Barbie

    Vivian

    My doctor said that I have to take the tegretol. I have mild nocturnal seizures.

    I have been diagnosed with osteoporosis and I am only 42.

    Is there any way for me to reverse this osteporosis? Or is it toll late for me?

    I take calcium and mag.

    I also drink soydrinks.

  12. Sandra

    I have osteoporosis and 10 spinal fractures caused by taking Tegretol for epilepsy for 12 years. Phenytoin is even worse. The drugs work by pulling out calcium from bones and destroying the Vitamin D in the body. They are called enzyme inducing drugs. It is a prime cause of osteoporosis.

  13. Barbie

    I also take Tegretol. I have had several fractures. I have heard that these drugs can cause bone loss. I have always worried about this. I wonder if there are any other seizure drugs that I could take that would not destoy my bones in the process?

  14. Deborah

    I might have osteoporosis, too. I also took all the bad anticonvulsants for a combined total of 36 years. Over the years, I suffered lots of bone fractures, bad teeth, etc. I’m on a road to recovery now, since not using the drugs anymore. One physician scared me into agreeing to take Fosomax to prevent my osteopenia from getting worse. I only took a few doses of that poison and it nearly crippled me from severe all-over pain. It’s been about 5 years since that occurred, and I do not know if the bone condition has improved or not. Good luck to you!

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