generic Keppra XR giving senior dog diarrhea

This is the place for general questions about drugs, long-term treatment concerns, possible influences of other drugs (such as antibiotics, heartworm preventatives, or anesthetics) for epileptic dogs, and other concerns. Please note that we cannot make specific recommendations for individual dogs - for this, please consult your veterinarian.

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Kestrel
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Oct 19, 2018 8:58 pm

generic Keppra XR giving senior dog diarrhea

Post by Kestrel » Mon Dec 03, 2018 1:54 pm

Hi All,
Does anyone have any advise, tips on how to prevent dog from getting diarrhea after taking levetiracetam ER? Or if changing to regular non extended release get rid of GI side effects? dosing 3 x will be difficult for us :/
My beagle has been taking levetiracetam ER since mid October, vet is having us split the 750 tablet in half and giving him that twice a day. So far the Keppra is controlling seizures but every two weeks or so it gives my 16 yr old beagle bad diarrhea. He has to take metronidazole to stop and get normal again, then a couple of days go by or the metro wears out and we are back. It tends to happen with the evening dose about 2 hours after giving him the half tablet.
My dog is still very alert and eating well, he's also on zonisamide which suppresses his appetite on its own.
There's a learning curve caring for epileptic pups and I'm still learning.
We give him the pills after he eats small breakfasts or dinners and space the pills about and hour or two apart. I started keeping a log to see if there's anything I'm doing that can change to help him, I even reversed the order of the pills.
16 yr old beagle
first seizure Sept 1 2017 when he was 15
Zonisamide 50 mg x 2 a day, since March 2018
Levetiracetam XR 750 split x 2 a day, since Oct 2018

Kestrel
Posts: 7
Joined: Fri Oct 19, 2018 8:58 pm

Re: generic Keppra XR giving senior dog diarrhea

Post by Kestrel » Wed Feb 27, 2019 10:26 pm

Update* I wish I had better one but my sweet beagle is gone to heaven, no more pills or seizures for him. The GI issues continued and became more frequent, he was loosing weight fast, he didn't want to go on walks, we did all we could. I mostly stayed home from work his last six weeks, and we had an at at home euthanasia. I highly recommend the home euthanasia, that was the easiest part out of his whole passing, it was such a peaceful day for him, he was the love of my life, it's almost like he knew what was happening that day, my heart is forever broken.
Anyways, my dog made it to 16.5 years old and had 6 seizures over a 15 month period, which was a great. At times I wish I would have switched to the regular release levetiracetam or reduced the dosage of the XR sooner and treated his GI issues more aggressively but things progressed kind of quickly for us. I was a bit overwhelmed and I was also trying to take cues from my dog, see what he wanted me to do and at the end it seemed like I got the timing perfectly. So anyone reading this, please be more compassionate with your self, caring for a dog with seizures is tough and a geriatric one is even more difficult. Good luck, best wishes.

GentleJacob's Mom
Posts: 39
Joined: Wed Feb 14, 2018 11:05 am

Re: generic Keppra XR giving senior dog diarrhea

Post by GentleJacob's Mom » Thu Feb 28, 2019 8:46 am

I'm so sorry for your loss. This disease is relentless. One of the first things you do is second guess what you did, but in your heart you know you did everything humanly possible. Seizures are unpredictable and come on without warning and you're stuck between trying to hopefully get and keep them under control and staving off any nasty side effects. Trying trying to find that middle ground for many of us is impossible.
You did everything you could and I hope you find peace knowing that.

Take Care,
Lynne

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