The anticonvulsants, sometimes also called antiepileptics, belong to a diverse group of pharmaceuticals used in prevention of the occurrence of epileptic seizures.
The goal of an anticonvulsant is to suppress the rapid and excessive firing of neurons that start a seizure.
Failing this, a good anticonvulsant would prevent the spread of the seizure within the brain and offer protection against possible excitotoxic effects that may result in brain damage.
An excellent anticonvulsant would have few serious side effects.
However, no such drug exists.
Many anticonvulsants block Sodium (Na+) channels, Calcium (Ca2+) channels, AMPA receptors or NMDA receptors.
Some anticonvulsants inhibit the metabolism of GABA or increase its release.