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Trigeminal Neuralgia – Medications

January 27, 2022


Trigeminal neuralgia type 1 has a short list of medications that are in some cases just absolutely spectacular and life-changing for the treatment of this condition. One of those is Carbamazepine (its other name is Tegretol) and that medication is so reliably good that for somebody who has this condition and has never been treated with this medication before, it’s almost certain that their symptoms will get either markedly better or in most cases go away. The problem is: with time, a tolerance will build to these medicines, so the natural history (or in other words: what happens as the disease progresses) is that the medications become less and less effective, the doses have to be raised and ultimately in many patients, the symptoms again reappear and we either have to add medication or seek other treatment options including surgery or radiation. To be more specific, the common medications for this condition are Tegretol or Carbamazepine. Another medication that’s commonly used is Gabapentin or Neurontin. Baclifin is another medication, but if you look at the classes of these medications, they are anti-seizure medications. That’s what we are typically using to treat this condition because we feel that the underlying problem here is some sort of short circuiting and anticonvulsant or antiseizure medications help calm or stabilize the signal and therefore symptoms get better with the use of these drugs.

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