Photosensitivity & Trileptal
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Q:  Photosensitivity & Trileptal

Have you heard of this? We're talking 15 minutes of sun exposure leading to bad burn - and this is with 30SPF sunscreen! It's so bad that I get burnt through my clothing. The drug works great and I really do not want to have to discontinue it!

Hello Mr. H' -- 
Yes, this is "photosensitivity", a well-known reaction for some (not very common; lucky you, drat). Down in the less-than-1% symptom list on the Prescribing Information (official company document published to meet FDA requirements for specific information -- so pretty technical but a good place to look for this kind of thing) (you can get these "PI"'s by searching like this: Trileptal Prescribing Information)

In the Skin section, beginning with acne and alopecia and ending with vitiligo, in the middle you'll find "photosensitivity reaction". 

I've never heard of any particular strategies beyond the obvious ones you're having to figure out, like opaque long sleeves and perhaps a stylish bumbershoot. 

Dr. Phelps

Published November, 2007

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