Rufinamide

About

Rufinamide is one of the newer anticonvulsant medications used to control seizures/fits.

Rufinamide must be prescribed by a doctor. You should never give your child anyone else’s medications.

 

Disclaimer

The information provided in this handout is limited and does not replace the need for a medical consultation. It is very important you speak to your doctor about all aspects of your medication including side effects when medication is first prescribed. Report any concerns to your doctor promptly.

 

Side effects

All medications have side effects. Not everyone will experience side effects.

Below are some of the possible side effects your child may experience:

  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Nausea/Vomiting
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhoea
  • Sleepiness
  • Blurred vision
  • Weight loss
  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety
  • Nosebleeds

Hypersensitivity Reaction - This is a serious and potentially life threatening reaction to Rufinamide that has been reported in a small number of children. The symptoms described are:

  • Fever
  • Rash
  • Blood in the urine
  • Swelling of the glands around the neck, under the arms or in the groin

If your child develops any of these symptoms after starting Rufinamide, you should contact your doctor immediately or go to the nearest Emergency Department. The medication may need to be stopped immediately under medical supervision.

Interactions

Many anticonvulsant medications interact with Rufinamide and your Doctor will need to review your anticonvulsants when Rufinamide is used.  This is also important if you are giving your child herbal or complementary medicines. The doctor can check to make sure they are compatible.

Need-to-know

Monitoring and Levels

  • There is no need to do regular blood monitoring with Rufinamide.
  • Your Doctor may perform an ECG before commencing Rufinamide as it has been found to make certain heart conditions worse. 

Pregnancy and contraception

  • There is very limited data on the safety of Rufinamide during pregnancy at the present time.
  • It is important that pregnancies are planned and that all medications including Rufinamide are discussed with your Doctor before pregnancy. Any effects that Rufinamide may have on the foetus should be discussed with your Doctor.
  • Rufinamide may decrease the efficacy of hormonal contraceptives such as the oral contraceptive pill and should be discussed with your treating Doctor.
  • For further information, refer to the Contraception and Pregnancy section.