Seizure Types

FYCOMPA® is a prescription medicine that is used with other medications to treat primary generalized tonic-clonic seizures (also known as grand mal seizures) and partial-onset seizures (also known as focal seizures) in people who are 12 years of age or older. Keep reading to understand these different seizures.


What is a seizure?

Nerve cells in the brain send signals to each other. During a seizure, these signals are not normal. There may be too many or too few signals. Or the signals might be different than usual. When this happens, you can have changes in how you move, act, or feel. You also might not be aware of what’s going on around you.
[back to the top]


What are the different types of seizures?

There are many different types of seizures. The 2 types of seizures that FYCOMPA is used to treat are primary generalized tonic-clonic seizures (also called grand mal seizures) and partial-onset seizures (also known as focal seizures).
[back to the top]


Primary generalized tonic-clonic seizures

  • Each seizure affects both sides of the brain at the same time
  • Includes 2 parts—the “tonic” or stiffening part, and the “clonic” or jerking movement part
  • Grand Mal Seizure

Partial-onset seizures

  • Each seizure starts in 1 part of the brain
  • Where the seizure starts is different for every person
  • May cause a change in movement or awareness
  • May also become a tonic-clonic seizure, which involves both sides of the brain
  • Partial onset seizure


Each type of seizure causes different symptoms. That's why it's important for your doctor to find out what type of seizure you have.

FYCOMPA is used with other medication to treat primary generalized tonic-clonic seizures and partial-onset seizures.
[back to the top]


Why do seizures happen?

People have seizures for different reasons. Your doctor may be able to help you figure out what caused you to have seizures. But sometimes the cause is not known. Here are some of the possible causes:

  • Loss of oxygen at birth
  • Infections in the brain
  • Brain tumors (cancer)
  • Head or brain injury
  • Blocks in the brain
  • Nerve disorders from conditions like Alzheimer's disease
  • Genetic disorders

[back to the top]


What may cause a seizure to happen when it does?

Some people’s seizures may have triggers—certain things that cause their seizures to happen. Trying to learn your triggers is an important part of understanding your seizures.

Based on certain times
  • Specific times of day or night
  • Times of fever or illness
  • In women, around the menstrual cycle or other hormonal changes
Based on what you go through
  • Stress
  • Drinking alcohol
  • Flashing bright lights or patterns
  • Specific foods or products
  • Too much caffeine
Based on basic health needs
  • Not taking medication
  • Not eating well—low blood sugar
  • Not getting enough sleep
Based on
certain times
Based on what
you go through
Based on basic
health needs
  • Specific times of day or night
  • Times of fever or illness
  • In women, around the menstrual cycle or other hormonal changes
  • Stress
  • Drinking alcohol
  • Flashing bright lights or patterns
  • Specific foods or products
  • Too much caffeine
  • Not taking medication
  • Not eating well—low blood sugar
  • Not getting enough sleep

[back to the top]


What are uncontrolled seizures?

Everyone has different responses to each medication. Some people take medication but continue to have seizures. When this happens, the seizures are called “uncontrolled seizures.”

If you experience primary generalized tonic-clonic seizures or partial-onset seizures and need additional control, ask your doctor if FYCOMPA may be right for you.

Not sure if your seizures are uncontrolled? Take the Seizure Treatment Quiz.
[back to the top]

Indication and Important Safety Information

Indication

FYCOMPA (perampanel) is a prescription medicine used with other medicines to treat partial-onset seizures with or without secondarily generalized seizures and primary generalized tonic-clonic seizures in people with epilepsy who are 12 years of age and older.

Important Safety Information

FYCOMPA may cause: new or worse aggressive behavior, homicidal thoughts or threats, hostility, anger, anxiety, irritability, being suspicious or distrustful (believing things that are not true), and other unusual or extreme changes in behavior or mood. Before taking FYCOMPA, patients should tell their healthcare provider if they have or had mental problems, aggression or hostile behavior.

Patients, their caregivers, and families should monitor for these changes and call their healthcare provider right away if they have any new or worsening mental problems while taking FYCOMPA. The combination of alcohol and FYCOMPA significantly worsened mood and increased anger. Patients taking FYCOMPA should avoid the use of alcohol.

Antiepileptic drugs, including FYCOMPA, may cause suicidal thoughts or actions in a very small number of people, about 1 in 500. Patients should call their healthcare providers right away if they have any of the following symptoms, especially if they are new, worse, or worrisome: thoughts about suicide or dying, thoughts of self-harm, attempt to commit suicide, new or worse depression, new or worse anxiety, feeling agitated or restless, panic attacks, trouble sleeping (insomnia), new or worse irritability, acting aggressive, being angry or violent, acting on dangerous impulses, an extreme increase in activity and talking (mania), and other unusual changes in behavior or mood.

Patients may have problems walking normally if they are unsteady because they feel dizzy. These symptoms may increase when their dose of FYCOMPA is increased. A patient’s risk of feeling dizzy and having problems walking normally may be higher if they are elderly. FYCOMPA may make patients feel sleepy or tired. Patients should not drive, operate heavy machinery, or do other dangerous activities until they know how FYCOMPA affects them. A patient’s risk of feeling sleepy and tired may be higher if they are elderly.

Taking FYCOMPA may increase a patient's chance of falling. These falls can cause serious injuries. A patient's risk of falling may be higher if they are elderly.

Patients must not stop FYCOMPA without first talking to their healthcare provider. Stopping FYCOMPA suddenly can cause serious problems and can cause patients to have seizures more often.

The most common side effects seen in patients receiving FYCOMPA were dizziness, sleepiness, headache, tiredness, irritability, falls, nausea, problems with muscle coordination, problems walking normally, vertigo, and weight gain. Tell your healthcare provider about any side effect that bothers you or does not go away.

Tell your healthcare provider about all the medicines you take, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Taking FYCOMPA with certain other medicines can cause side effects or reduce either drug’s benefit. These other medicines include: birth control, carbamazepine, phenytoin, oxcarbazepine, rifampin, and St. John’s wort.

Before taking FYCOMPA, patients should tell their healthcare provider if they drink alcohol. Patients should not drink alcohol or take other medicines that make them sleepy or dizzy while taking FYCOMPA until they talk to their healthcare provider. FYCOMPA taken with alcohol or medicines that cause sleepiness or dizziness may make their sleepiness or dizziness worse.

Before taking FYCOMPA, patients should tell their healthcare provider if they are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while taking FYCOMPA. It is not known if FYCOMPA will harm your unborn baby. If a patient becomes pregnant while taking FYCOMPA, they should talk to their healthcare provider about registering with the North American Antiepileptic Drug Pregnancy Registry (1-888-233-2334).

Before taking FYCOMPA, patients should tell their healthcare provider if they are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. Patients should talk to their healthcare provider about the best way to feed their baby if they take FYCOMPA. Patients should not take FYCOMPA if they breastfeed.

Before taking FYCOMPA, patients should tell their healthcare provider if they have liver or kidney problems. They should not take FYCOMPA if they have severe kidney or liver problems.

FYCOMPA is a controlled substance (CIII) because it can be abused or lead to drug dependence. Before taking FYCOMPA, patients should tell their healthcare provider if they have abused prescription medicines, street drugs, or alcohol in the past. Patients should keep their FYCOMPA in a safe place to protect it from theft and should never give it to anyone else because it may harm them. Selling or giving away FYCOMPA is against the law.