Do epilepsy drugs affect reproduction

Do epilepsy medications affect childbearing? This is one of many questions surrounding epilepsy medications and childbearing.

Do epilepsy drugs affect reproduction

In the event that one parent has epilepsy, it is crucial to plan the pregnancy well in order to maintain the health of the pregnancy and the foetus, but do epilepsy medications have an impact on reproduction?

Do epilepsy drugs affect reproduction?

If you have epilepsy, you might be curious about how reproduction is impacted by epilepsy medications. The answer is yes, some medications used to treat epileptic seizures may contribute to infertility in both women and men.

Do epilepsy drugs affect reproduction in women?

The following are the most notable effects of epilepsy medications on female reproduction:

  • Some anticonvulsants used by epileptics alter the hormone levels in women's ovaries, which may have an impact on ovarian function and the ability to become pregnant.
  • It is necessary to see your doctor to find out if the epilepsy medication is the cause of your irregular menstruation because some epilepsy medications affect the menstrual cycle. This can lead to irregular menstruation, which can make it difficult to determine the fertile periods and the best days for pregnancy.
  • Some frequently prescribed antiepileptic drugs, including phenytoin, valproic acid, and valproate, raise the possibility of having a child with birth defects, particularly neural tube defects like spina bifida.

Do epilepsy drugs affect reproduction in men?

But how do anti-epileptic medications impact male fertility? Actually, yes. For men with epilepsy, the following are the main effects:

  • Given the connection between carbamazepine, oxcarbazepine, and sodium valproate and the abnormalities in sperm in men, taking some epilepsy medications is linked to infertility and reproductive issues in men.
  • Testicular atrophy has been linked to patients with epilepsy who take sodium valproate and have abnormal sperm counts.
  • Some anti-epileptic medications have an impact on male fertility and conception by reducing sperm production and degrading sperm quality.

Does epilepsy affect reproduction?

After addressing the query, do epilepsy medications impact conceiving? It is necessary to mention the effect of epilepsy itself on the body with regard to reproduction:

1. Fertility problems in women 

Contrary to other women, women with epilepsy are more likely to experience fertility issues, which can delay pregnancy. Hormonal drugs may occasionally be used to treat this condition.

2. Polycystic Ovary Syndrome

Cysts on the ovaries are brought on by polycystic ovarian syndrome, which also affects hormone levels in the body. These factors may prevent ovulation, which lowers the likelihood of conception.

Although PCOS is a risk for all women, research indicates that epileptic women are more likely to develop it.

3. Reducing testosterone levels in men

Epilepsy lowers testosterone levels, the male sex hormone that has a significant impact on men's sexual life and causes impotence and decreased libido.

How is it possible to prepare for pregnancy and childbirth when suffering from epilepsy?

Although epilepsy and its medications have an impact on childbearing, they do not prevent it. Instead, the following steps must be taken:

  1. Women with epilepsy who are planning to become pregnant and have children should see a doctor to determine the treatment changes you need to make before becoming pregnant.
  2. If you suffer from frequent epileptic seizures before pregnancy, the doctor may advise you to wait, as it is recommended to get pregnant after the epilepsy is well controlled.
  3. Your doctor may reduce your epilepsy medications before you become pregnant and monitor your health if you haven't had seizures for two years or more, but be sure to check with your doctor before adjusting or stopping your medications.
  4. We advise you to follow a healthy lifestyle, through the following:
    • Avoid smoking , alcohol, drugs and caffeine.
    • Take the necessary vitamins.
    • Sleep enough hours.
    • Follow a healthy diet.

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