Sodium valproate is associated with an increased risk of harm to babies if taken during pregnancy. If you are a woman capable of becoming pregnant, sodium valproate should only be prescribed if no other epilepsy medicine suits you.
If you are pregnant or planning a pregnancy and you take sodium valproate, seek advice from your doctor and do not stop taking your medication.
If you take sodium valproate
Types of contraception that may work for you
All barrier methods may work for you. These include:
- The coil
The hormonal contraception that may work for you include:
- Combined oral contraceptive pill (the Pill)
- Contraceptive implant
- Contraceptive patch
- Depo-Provera contraceptive injection – but see box below
- Mirena coil
- Noristerat contraceptive injection
- Projestogen-only pill (the mini pill) - but see box below
- Vaginal ring
Unplanned (emergency) contraception
The unplanned (emergency) contraception that may work for you include:
- The morning-after pill
- Levonorgestrel (Levonelle)
- Ulipristal acetate (EllaOne)
- The coil
Depo-Provera contraception injection
If you are considering using Depo-Provera injections, it’s advisable to seek advice about osteoporosis from your doctor.
More information about epilepsy and osteoporosis.
Progestogen-only pill (the mini pill)
Types of contraception that are not recommended for you
Natural birth control
All types of natural birth control are not recommended.
This information has been produced under the terms of The Information Standard.
- Updated December 2015
- Currently under review
Epilepsy Action would like to thank Beth Irwin, Epilepsy Nurse/Midwife at the UK Epilepsy and Pregnancy Register, Belfast, for her contribution to this information.
Beth Irwin has no conflict of interest to declare.