Lamotrigine advised for epilepsy in pregnancy

Use of valproate as an antiepileptic during pregnancy results in far higher rates of fetal malformation compared with lamotrigine and carbamazepine, UK researchers find.

The 15-year study included over 5,200 women with epilepsy who had taken one of the three drugs as monotherapy.

Risk of fetal malformation in women taking valproate was 6.2% compared with 2.6% for carbamazepine and 2.3% with lamotrigine, the authors led by Dr Ellen Campbell of the Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast found.