Last Updated on June 3, 2023
Valproic Acid 250, 500, 750 mg is offered by most online pharmacies. First study tips about buying drugs online, if you want to buy Valproic Acid online.
Valproic acid is a medication commonly used to treat seizures and bipolar disorder. Typically, it is only available by prescription from a doctor. However, some people may wonder if it is possible to purchase valproic acid over the counter.
In the UK, valproic acid is not available over the counter. It is a prescription-only medication, which means that you need a valid prescription from a doctor in order to purchase it. Attempting to obtain valproic acid without a prescription is illegal and can result in serious health risks.
It is important to remember that valproic acid should only be taken under the guidance of a doctor. They will carefully monitor your symptoms and adjust your dosage accordingly to ensure that you are receiving the appropriate amount of medication. If you believe that you may benefit from taking valproic acid, speak with your doctor to discuss your options.
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What is valproic acid?
Valproic acid is used to treat epilepsy and seizures and to stabilize mood in bipolar disorder. In addition, it is used because of its wide effective range for the treatment of other diseases such as hereditary diseases, HIV and cancer. Here you can read everything you need to know about action and use of Valproic acid, side effects and interactions.
How does valproic acid works?
In the human brain, nerve cells (neurons) communicate with each other by distributing chemical messengers (neurotransmitters) that are perceived by neighboring nerve cells at specific docking sites (receptors). Depending on the type of neurotransmitter and the type of receptor, these neurotransmitters can either excite or inhibit subsequent neurons. For example, GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) is an excitatory neurotransmitter and GABA is an inhibitory neurotransmitter in the brain.
In people with seizures, nerve cells throughout the brain or only in certain areas of the brain are overexcitable. They generate massive waves of excitatory signals – either spontaneously or as a result of certain triggers. This can cause the classic symptoms of epilepsy: seizures with tight or rapidly moving (twitching) muscles and/or loss of consciousness.
Drugs such as valproic acid inhibit the action of excitatory neurotransmitters while enhancing the action of the inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA. This dampening mode of action of valproic acid also explains why it can alleviate manic episodes in patients with bipolar disorder.
Pharmacokinetics and metabolism of valproic acid
After ingestion, valproic acid is absorbed in the intestines and travels through the bloodstream to the brain, where it easily crosses the blood-brain barrier. The concentration of valproic acid in the brain is about ten percent of the concentration in the blood.
The drug is metabolized in the liver to a number of metabolites, some of which are also potentially anticonvulsant. These are mainly excreted in the urine. Approximately twelve to 16 hours after ingestion, the drug concentration in the blood is halved.
When is valproic acid used?
Valproic acid is used to treat many forms of epilepsy. These include, for example:
- Generalized seizures in the form of absence seizures (petit mal seizures with brief lapses of consciousness).
- generalized seizures in the form of myoclonic seizures (with twitching of muscle groups)
- generalized tonic-clonic seizures (grand mal seizures with loss of consciousness, falling, spasms, and twitching of muscle groups)
- partial seizures (focal seizures) simple type with preservation of consciousness
- focal seizures complex type with disturbed consciousness
- partial seizures with secondary generalization (becoming a generalized seizure)
Valproic acid may also be used in combination with other drugs to treat other types of epilepsy.
Valproic acid is also approved for bipolar disorder when the drug lithium is not tolerated or for other reasons cannot be used to treat the manic episodes. The drug may also be taken to prevent manic episodes.
Valproic acid is usually used in the longer term, but can also be used for short-term treatment of manic episodes.
How valproic acid is used?
Valproic acid and its more water-soluble sodium or calcium salt (often simply called “valproate”) are available as tablets, extended-release tablets, gastro-resistant tablets, oral solutions, and injections.
Long-term treatment with valproic acid is usually with oral dosage forms, the solution is reserved for oral children under six years and patients with dysphagia. Treatment is started with a low dose that is then slowly increased over several weeks. Usual doses in adults are 1000-1800 mg of valproic acid (equivalent to about 1200 to 2100 milligrams of sodium valproate). The total daily dose should be divided into two to four divided doses depending on individual tolerability in consultation with the doctor. The medication should be taken on an empty stomach about one hour before meals.
What are the side effects of valproic acid?
The most common side effect is an increase in the concentration of ammonia in the blood. Taken alone, this increase is not critical, but high ammonia levels cause symptoms such as vomiting, ataxia, impaired consciousness, low blood pressure, and increased seizure tendency. If such symptoms occur, treatment with valproic acid should be discontinued or the dose reduced (in consultation with a physician). In one to ten percent of patients also show valproic acid side effects such as a decrease in platelets (due to a reduced formation in the bone marrow), an irregular menstrual cycle, hand tremors, paresthesia or loss.
What should I watch for while taking valproic acid?
Valproic acid may be used in children as young as three years of age (in exceptional cases, even younger), adolescents, adults, and the elderly.
The combination of valproic acid with other drugs may decrease or increase the level of valproic acid in the body. For example, agents such as mefloquine (for malaria) and carbapenems (antibiotics) decrease the level of valproic acid in the body. Other drugs increase it, including antiepileptic drugs (phenobarbital, phenytoin, primidone, carbamazepine, felbamate), antacids (cimetidine), certain antibiotics (erythromycin, rifampin), and the antidepressant fluoxetine.
Conversely, valproic acid changes the way other drugs work. For example, they increase the effect of other antiepileptics partly why the combined treatment should be done by an experienced doctor. Also Valproic acid may increase the effect of anticoagulants and thus the tendency to bleed.
Valproic acid may cause liver damage. Liver function should be monitored before and during treatment to allow for rapid response if needed. In case of hepatic impairment, the doctor will decide carefully on an application.
Because valproic acid is teratogenic, pregnant and breastfeeding mothers should not be treated with valproic acid. In addition, adequate precautions should always be taken during treatment with Valproic acid.
How to get valproic acid?
Valproic acid is available in any strength and dosage form only by prescription from a pharmacy.
How long has Valproic been on market?
Valproic acid was first synthesized by the chemist Beverly Burton in 1881, and because of its ability to dissolve water-insoluble substances, it was often used in chemistry. It was not until 1962 that French scientist Pierre Eymard, while studying plant constituents, noticed that the anticonvulsant effect of the plant extracts he studied was not due to the constituents but to the solvent, valproic acid. In 1967, valproic acid was approved in France for the treatment of epilepsy. Since the drug is no longer protected by patents, many pharmaceutical manufacturers now offer preparations containing the active ingredient valproic acid.