Articles, DRUGS

Phenytoin (Dilantin) – Uses, Dosage, Side Effects & Interactions

Phenytoin also known as Dilantin is an anti seizure medication that is used to treat absence seizures, tonic-clonic seizures and even partial seizures. In today’s world many people look towards the scientific part of society for better and more efficient drugs that only can change the way we look at medication but also give people a means to rejoice over new ways of treating an issue. Medicines can range in different types making it very easy for you to choose whatever you need and since everything is evolving at such a fast pace everyday that is why it is very necessary for you to do some research on the matter first.

Firstly you must always have a direct concept as to what people must use on a daily basis in regards to the dosage of the medication because as you all know each illness requires a separate dosage of medication directly relating to the overall intensity of the illness. Dilantin is very popularly used for heart arrhythmia as well and even neuropathic pain making it an all round drug that has many uses. There is a constant rise in the need for medication daily in todays world and to help counter this requirement there are plenty of movements that have been made into the subject of better medication to help the world deal with issues that are arising on an every day basis.

Usually Dilantin can be categorised as a drug to help cure seizures of all magnitudes but it is always necessary that you take the help of your general physician before using this drug because as they say taking too much of even a good thing may be bad for you. As mentioned above there are a number of dosages for various situations so make sure you are well versed with all concepts before moving on to using the drug when required.


There are many benefits Phenytoin uses as you may know by now that it has plenty of applications to the human body when a person is suffering with seizures on several magnitudes. It deals with heart issues as well that may cause seizures and even allows adequate blood flow to the brain preventing clots that are also a reason for seizures to occur. Dilantin is available for professional use only after getting adequate permission from your personal physician so as to better understand the concept of the drug. There are many issues that Dilantin deals with as well that are not very well known, these issues of the human body are-

  • Anxiety: Dilantin has been very well known to be used for anxiety on various levels. Dilantin is like a finely tuned radio and clears the system of any anomalies when used in a regulated format. Anxiety is a very small issue that may lead to seizures over time and Dilantin does well to deal with this issue easily when used in a regulatory format.
  • Claustrophobia: there are many side effects to having seizures of which one may be claustrophobia. Dilantin does well to deal with this issue as it deals with all issues relating to seizures in the human body. The best part is this drug works for all ages but must be regulated as a child cannot take the same dosage as an adult.
  • Depression: the properties of Dilantin help you to deal with depression on a large scale as well by adding stimulants in your body which are primarily to help treat seizures. These stimulants help you to feel elevated dealing with depression on a large scale making it a boon for the depressed.
  • Migraines: another side effect that a person goes through when facing seizures no matter the magnitude is migraines which can be treated easily with the stimulants present in Dilantin. It is one of the best ways you can deal with elevated headaches on a daily basis.
  • Obsessive compulsive disorder: is another nerve related problem called OCD in short and effects a person mentally and physically requiring immediate attention at times and ranges on various scales of intensity amongst various people. Though OCD is a common issue it can be easily dealt with by using Dilantin which is a great addition to the body.
  • Restless leg syndrome: this issue is something that is the by product of seizures no matter the magnitude and can be easily dealt with, with the right dosage of Dilantin. Restless leg syndrome is quite a persistent issue but will subside over time.


    Normally it is absolutely up to your personal doctor to give you all the information that is necessary for you to use this medication adequately. You can easily ask your doctor for a consultation from which you will be able to get all the information that is necessary to take this medication ranging from dosage to regular or semi regular and so on. It is very necessary that you have to take your doctors consent before using this medication because in the wrong hands this medication can be quite negatively effective to the human body so use it wisely.

    Dilantin primarily is taken orally but may be included in the injection status as well. Do not crush or break the capsule of Dilantin when taking the medication and swallow the capsule whole. Do not increase or decrease the prescribed dosage during the time of intake in order to avoid side effects. When going the injection way shake the oral suspension well before you measure a dose. Use a syringe or a measuring spoon at the time to help give you definitive results. it is always better that you take frequent blood tests when taking Dilantin in order to stay safe at all times.

    It is very necessary that you do not stop taking Dilantin suddenly during your course and especially if you are taking it for seizures as the stopping of this medication suddenly might lead to even stronger seizures so it is always better to wean yourself of the medication slowly if you find positive results. it is always better to take advice from your personal physician on this regard before taking any decision.


    The loading Phenytoin dose, only subjected to inpatients is 1 g cut into three dosages of 400 mg,   Dilantin 300 mg and 300 mg respectively and even Phenytoin 100 mg given very periodically at 2 hour intervals. A normal maintenance dosage must be started after 24 hours of the loading dosage in order to keep the patient stable. The initial dosage after loading dose is 100 mg extended release orally in a period of three times a day on a daily basis. When positive results are found in regards to helping in maintenance of seizures on taking a 100 mg maintenance dosage at least 3 times a day then the dosage can be regulated to a once-a-day 300 mg release dosage but if necessary the dosage can be increased to Dilantin 200 mg on a three time a day interval but this is only if extremely necessary.

    Suspension patients who have received no prior treatment when it comes to medication can be placed on a 125 mg supply on a three time a day clock. That is 3 teaspoons full of the medicine, and when the patient gets comfortable with the dosage the amount supplied can be increased to five teaspoons full necessary.

    When supplementing the dosage on Iv always keep the dosage to 50mg/min for the maximum effect at all times. The loading dosage must always be 10-15 mg/kg IV slowly. Maintenance dose must always be 100 mg IV every 6-8 hours. One notable fact that you must always keep in mind though is to avoid the IM route for fear of total absorption. Dosage quantities can even be understood clearly from your personal physician and it is always better to get professional advice before going ahead with dosage intake.


    You should always be careful not to take Dilantin if you are allergic to Phenytoin or if you are also on a drug called delavirdine (rescriptor) or similar medicines such as ethotoin, mephenytoin and so on. It is always important to know the known facts about taking Dilantin or in fact any drug so that you know that the drug is safe for you, that is why it is always necessary to tell your doctor if you face any issues with depression, suicidal thoughts, liver disease, diabetes, a vitamin D deficiency and so on. It is also not wise to take Dilantin when you are pregnant but if your doctor gives confirmation that you can on by taking a controlled amount then everything is fine.


Medicines do react at times with similar mediation or with medication that handles a different part of your body stirring up issues that cannot be dealt with easily as it leaves side effects that are quite hard to handle over the issues that you already have. That is why it is always necessary to take the advice of your doctor by putting forward you entire medical history so that this issue does not happen. In the case of Dilantin it is always better to stay away from this drug if you are already on another drug known as delavirdine( rescriptor) as it causes an adverse reaction in the body. Phenytoin side effects only occur if you box together two similar medications at one time.


The common Phenytoin side effects may include:-

  • Nausea: Dilantin may cause nausea when clubbed together with a similar drug or if you are allergic to any phenytoin drug such as ethotoin, mephenytoin and so on. The best thing to do is visit your doctor immediately in order to either curb the extent of the medication or try other means of medication to help you deal with your issues.
  • Stomach pain: every drug is known to come with a list of issues that differ from person to person as no two people have the same constitution and that is why it is always necessary to take the advice of your physician. Stomach pain is quite a common issue actually when taking Dilantin and can be easily curbed by making some adjustments to the regulation of medicine. If you see that this problem persists and even tends to rise over time then it is very necessary for you to visit your doctor immediately.
  • Enlargement of the gums: another very normal side effects that may occur in people taking Dilantin, it normally occurs with unregulated dosage or a requirement for increase or decrease of the dosage, it may also occur if your body is allergic to Phenytoin mediation of all kinds and requires immediate attention if the problem persists.
  • Low blood pressure: it is quite often seen that Phenytoin ingestion cause low blood pressure in certain patients and this is only because of the strong direct impact the drug has on your body. It will subside over time once your body gets used to a regulated form o the drug intake.
  • Birth issues: it is also seen that the side effects of Phenytoin may cause birth defects in babies when taken during pregnancy but can be easily used during breastfeeding so it is better to take your doctors advice before taking this drug during pregnancy.
  • Alcohol: alcohol may interfere in the full properties of this drug so it is better to stay away from alcohol at all times when using this drug to treat any issue

Seizures is an issue that is quite persistent and may lead to subsidiary issues in the long run that cannot always be dealt with immediately and that is where the beauty of Dilantin or Phenytoin comes in as a means of dealing with issues relating to a number of seizures of different magnitudes and all its side effects effectively.