What is Valproate Sodium?

Category: Prescription Drugs

Most popular types: Epilim Depakine Epilim chrono Show all


Sodium valproate or valproate sodium is the sodium salt of valproic acid and is an anticonvulsant used in the treatment of epilepsy and bipolar disorder, as well as other psychiatric conditions requiring the administration of a mood stabilizer.

Reported purpose & perceived effectiveness
Purpose Patients Evaluations Perceived Effectiveness
Epilepsy 98 58
Bipolar disorder 60 77
Bipolar manic episodes 23 26
Bipolar II disorder 11 6
Bipolar I disorder 5 2

Show all 55 reasons taken

  • Major
  • Moderate
  • Slight
  • None
  • Can't tell

Side effects

Side effects as an overall problem

Side effects as an overall problem
Severity Evaluations Percentage
Severe 28
Moderate 53
Mild 36
None 64

Commonly reported side effects and conditions associated with Valproate Sodium

Side effect Patients Percentage
Weight gain 29
Drowsiness 9
Hair loss 8
Fatigue 7
Nausea 6
Sleepiness 6

Show all 79 reported side effects


Based on patients currently taking Valproate Sodium

Dosage Patients Percentage
500 mg three times daily 2
3 mcg daily 1
15 mg daily 1
150 mg daily 1
200 mg daily 1
150 mg three times daily 1
250 mg twice daily 1
500 mg daily 1
300 mg twice daily 1
400 mg twice daily 1

See all 16 dosages

Why patients stopped taking Valproate Sodium

Multiple reasons could be selected

Reason Patients Percentage
Side effects too severe 31
Did not seem to work 23
Doctor's advice 21
Other 13
Course of treatment ended 5
Personal research 3
Expense 2
Change in health plan coverage 1
See all 68 patients who've stopped taking Valproate Sodium


Currently taking Valproate Sodium

Duration Patients Percentage
6 months - 1 year 1
2 - 5 years 3
5 - 10 years 6
10 years or more 7

Stopped taking Valproate Sodium

Duration Patients Percentage
Less than 1 month 15
1 - 6 months 16
6 months - 1 year 7
1 - 2 years 9
2 - 5 years 12
5 - 10 years 7
10 years or more 3
Adherence Evaluations Percentage
Always 140
Usually 31
Sometimes 7
Never taken as prescribed 3
Burden Evaluations Percentage
Very hard to take 13
Somewhat hard to take 21
A little hard to take 41
Not at all hard to take 106
Cost per month
Cost per month Evaluations Percentage
$200+ 0
$100-199 3
$50-99 3
$25-49 6
< $25 50
Not specified 119

What people switch to and from

Patients started taking Valproate Sodium after stopping:

Treatment Patients Percentage
Lithium Carbonate (Lithium Carbonate ER) 5
Quetiapine (Seroquel) 4
Carbamazepine (Tegretol) 3
Lamotrigine (Lamictal) 3
Oxcarbazepine (Trileptal) 2

Show all 17 treatments patients report switching from

Patients stopped taking Valproate Sodium and switched to:

Treatment Patients Percentage
Carbamazepine (Tegretol) 3
Lamotrigine (Lamictal) 3
Amisulpride (Solian) 1
Divalproex sodium (Depakote) 1
Levetiracetam (Keppra) 1

Show all 12 treatments patients report switching to

Last updated:

7 patient evaluations for Valproate Sodium

Jun 28, 2012 (Started Apr 12, 1968)

  • Effectiveness
    Moderate (for epilepsy)
  • Side effects
    Moderate (nausea)
  • Adherence
  • Burden
    Somewhat hard to take
Dosage: 1600 mg Daily
Advice & Tips: Lot of tablets (8 per day)
Cost: < $25 monthly

  • 0 helpful marks

Jul 21, 2011 (Started Jan 06, 2008)

  • Effectiveness
    Major (for bipolar disorder)
  • Side effects
  • Adherence
  • Burden
    Not at all hard to take
Dosage: 500 mg Daily
Advice & Tips: It is a remedy, which stabilizes a chemical condition and prevents from too sudden mood swings, so that having some experience you can notice and evaluate moods and - especially - overexcited and hyperactive emotional boosts. The remedy is effective in preventing manic conditions, though there is quite a lot of way to go in psychotherapy, healthy lifestyle, sports, positive attitudes, meditation or other methods in case of depression. But, again, the remedy helps to keep balance when some euphoria arises with the improvement of condition - and this is quite natural, as these are very positive emotions, when your hopes to get out of depressive states start to fulfill. So when taken regularly (obviously, in case of depression, mania or normal states), it is a lot of help in stability, which a lot of people who fought bipolar disorder more or less successfully in the past just didn't have.
Cost: < $25 monthly

Jan 2, 2009 (Started Jan 06, 2008)

  • Effectiveness
    Moderate (for bipolar disorder)
  • Side effects
  • Adherence
  • Burden
    A little hard to take
Dosage: 500 mg Daily
Advice & Tips: "Depakine" was effective when I had mania period. Yet constant use of it is more of a prevention against mania or other mood swings. It hadn't had any effect for depression and anxiety for me.
Cost: < $25 monthly

  • 0 helpful marks

Jul 21, 2011 (Started Mar 17, 2011)

  • Effectiveness
    Moderate (for bipolar II disorder)
  • Side effects
  • Adherence
  • Burden
    Not at all hard to take
Dosage: 750 mg Daily
Advice & Tips: I have found that since taking this treatment i have been able on good days sleep better and i have found that my thoughts are more stable and less busy and all over the place.. I have found that i feel more on a general mood level rather than just being right up or right down so with this i find that if im having a low day that i can cope with it better.

  • 0 helpful marks
Last updated:
Showing 3 of 7 patient evaluations for Valproate Sodium