Phenobarbital acid CAS Registry Number 50-06-6
USES: This medication is used alone or with other medications to control
certain types of seizure problems (e.g., grand mal and partial
seizures). Controlling seizures helps prevent injury from falling and
allows you to lead a more normal life. Phenobarbital belongs to a class
of drugs known as barbiturate anticonvulsants/hypnotics. It works by
controlling the abnormal electrical activity in the brain that occurs
during a seizure. This medication is also used for a short time (2-4
weeks) to help calm you during periods of anxiety. It works for anxiety
by affecting certain parts of the brain to cause calming. HOW TO USE:
Take this medication by mouth with or without food, usually 1-3 times
daily or as directed by your doctor. If you are taking the elixir,
carefully measure your dose using a medication-measuring device or
spoon. Do not use a household spoon. Dosage is based on your age,
medical condition, phenobarbital blood levels, and response to therapy.
SIDE EFFECTS: Dizziness, sleepiness, drowsiness, tiredness, loss of
appetite, nausea, vomiting, or staggering walk/clumsiness may occur when
you first start taking the medication, but tend to disappear over time
(usually in a few weeks). Less common side effects may include headache,
constipation, nightmares, and increased dreaming. If any of these
effects persist or worsen, notify your doctor or pharmacist promptly. A
very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek
immediate medical attention if you notice any symptoms of a serious
allergic reaction, including: rash, itching, swelling, severe dizziness,
trouble breathing. PRECAUTIONS: Before taking phenobarbital, tell your
doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to other barbiturates
(e.g., secobarbital); or if you have any other allergies. Before using
this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history,
especially of: illegal drug use, persistent pain problems, liver
problems, mental/mood changes (e.g., depression, thoughts of suicide),
certain kidney problems (e.g., nephritis, decreased kidney function).
Phenobarbital should not be used for anxiety in the elderly because they
are more sensitive to the effects of the drug, especially confusion and
MISSED DOSE: If you are taking this medication to prevent seizures and
miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember unless it is almost time
for the next dose. In that case, skip the missed dose and resume your
usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.
STORAGE: Store at room temperature between 68-77 degrees F (20-25
degrees C) away from light and moisture. Do not store in the bathroom.
Keep all medicines away from children and pets.