Taking Your Anti-Seizure Medication (ASMs)

Taking your ASMs (also known as anti-epilptic drugs AEDs) as prescribed by your doctor is important for maintaining good seizure control. ASMs work best when they are taken at the same time every day, as this helps to keep the medication at a steady level in your body.

Some common reasons why people may not take their ASMs as prescribed include:

  • Forgetting to take a dose
  • Accidentally taking two doses
  • Stopping medication due to side effects or feeling that the medication isn’t working
  • Reduced medication effectiveness due to illness (e.g. vomiting or diarrhoea)
  • Using a different brand (such as generic brand substitution)
  • Running out of medication
  • Stopping the medication without medical advice because the person hasn’t had a seizure for a long time.

If you do miss a dose the general advice is to take it as soon as you remember. If you take your ASM once a day, then take the forgotten dose as soon as you remember. If you take your ASM twice a day, then take the forgotten dose within six hours after it was due otherwise don’t take the forgotten dose and take your usual second dose at the time it should be taken.

Managing your specific ASM regime will depend on the type and amount of medication  you are taking – speak to your doctor about what to do in your case if you miss a dose. If you have any concerns contact your doctor. For general health advice and information call  0800 611 116 anytime


Want to know more about your medication but not sure what to ask? Download this poster from Health Quality and Safety Commission NZ, 2019

Back to top