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Contraception and Antiepileptic Drugs


  • Taasha Guillemette WHNP-BC, CRNP, MSN, MA,

  • Susan M. Yount CNM, PhD, WHNP-BC

Taasha Guillemette, WHNP-BC, CRNP, MSN, MA, Ndlovu Women's Health, 100 South Second Street, Suite 4A Harrisburg, PA 17101. E-mail:


Epilepsy is a neurologic condition that affects women and women's choices in many areas of their lives. Some antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) used in the treatment of epilepsy can interact with hormonal contraceptives. The result can be decreased effectiveness in the contraceptive with the possibility of unintended pregnancy, or decreased effectiveness of the AED that can result in seizure activity. This article provides information about concurrent AED and contraceptive use to assist health care providers in guiding women with epilepsy to make the best contraceptive choices based on their reproductive life plans.