Compare dexamethasone vs. Keppra

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

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Decadron (dexamethasone)

Prescription only

Keppra (levetiracetam)

Prescription only
Calms down your immune system.

Decadron (dexamethasone) is a long-acting oral corticosteroid that is very effective in treating allergic reactions and immune conditions, however, if you're taking Decadron (dexamethasone) for a long time, there can be serious side effects.

Prevents seizures.

Keppra (levetiracetam) is effective for preventing seizures in people with epilepsy and has fewer drug interactions than its alternatives.

4.5/ 5 average rating with 21 reviewsforKeppra
Upsides
  • Effective in treating many conditions.
  • Can improve energy and appetite.
  • Can control immune responses that are causing you discomfort and works quickly to relieve symptoms like swelling, rash, asthma attacks, and pain.
  • Has long-term benefit in calming down the immune system and keeping it from causing your body harm, such as in autoimmune conditions.
  • Available in generic form.
  • Keppra (levetiracetam) is effective at lowering the frequency of various types of seizures.
  • Keppra (levetiracetam) is available in liquid form or dissolving tablets if you have trouble swallowing pills.
  • Compared to other seizure medications, Keppra (levetiracetam) has fewer side effects and drug interactions, and usually does not require monitoring blood levels.
Downsides
  • Many side effects, particularly with long term use.
  • Side effects include mood changes, trouble sleeping and increase in blood pressure and blood sugar at higher doses.
  • Long-term use can cause problems with skin, bone, eye health and put you at a higher risk for infections.
  • If you've been using corticosteroids for more than 2 weeks, you will need to work with a doctor to get off the medicine slowly.
  • Limited studies conducted with use of steroids during pregnancy or breastfeeding - potential harm to unborn baby.
  • Must be taken on time so that there are consistent levels of the drug in your body.
  • Keppra (levetiracetam) may not be the best drug to take if you have a history of mood problems, such as depression or bipolar disorder.
  • If you have kidney problems, your dose will need to be adjusted and your doctor will check your kidney function regularly.
  • Due to its effects on your balance, Keppra (levetiracetam) may not be appropriate for the elderly.
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Used for
  • Allergies
  • Skin Conditions
  • Endocrine Conditions
  • Eye Conditions
  • Stomach Conditions
  • Respiratory disorder
  • Multiple sclerosis flare
  • Hematologic Conditions
  • Cancer
  • Autoimmune and Rheumatic Conditions
  • Immune thrombocytopenia
  • Acute mountain sickness
  • Multiple myeloma
  • Prevention of nausea and vomiting from chemotherapy
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Liquid
  • Pill
  • Extended release
  • Liquid
  • Oral disintegrating tablet
Price
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Reviews
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21 reviews so far
33%
saidit'sworth it
81%
saiditworked well
33%
saidit'sa big hassle

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Side effects
The Decadron (dexamethasone) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
13possible side effects
  • Drowsiness
    12%
  • Neck pain
    8%
  • Inflammation of the back of throat
    7%
  • Feeling off balance
    5%
  • Flu symptoms
    5%
  • Depression
    5%
  • Anxiety
    3%
  • Depressed mood
    2%
  • Double vision
    2%
  • Excessive sleepiness
    2%
  • Difficulty sleeping
    2%
  • Irritability
    2%
  • Nervousness
    2%
See more detailed side effects
Risks and risk factors
  • Lowered adrenal function
    • Lowering dose or stopping too quickly especially after long-term treatment
    • Stress such as trauma, surgery or infection
  • Increased risk for infections
    • Taking other immunosuppressants
    • Long-term treatment
    • Not vaccinated against viral diseases
    • Contact with people who have viral illness
    • History of bacterial or viral conditions
  • Changes in heart and kidney function
    • Recent heart attack
  • Stomach and intestinal problems
    • History of stomach bleeding
    • Active or history of stomach ulcers
    • Ulcerative colitis
    • Taking Decadron (dexamethasone) with other medicine that can cause stomach problems
  • Bone effects
    • Dose of Decadron (dexamethasone)
    • Duration of treatment
  • Eye problems
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Life-threatening skin reactions
  • Suicidal thoughts or behavior
  • Driving impairment
    • Taking with alcohol
    • Taking other medicines that make you less alert
  • Blood disorders
  • Withdrawal seizures
    • Stopping Keppra (levetiracetam) suddenly
  • Psychiatric side effects
    • History of psychiatric problems
    • Ages less than 18
See more detailed risks and warnings