@PandaGolden--I have not personally taken Tegretol, but I do have a friend who is taking it for the same condition. The side effects that can be felt are dizziness, drowsiness and nausea. She also needs to get periodic blood tests to make sure her liver and kidneys are not being damaged.
She has also told me of an occipital lobe epilepsy diet (also called a ketogenic diet) that has shown great promise in helping to control, or in some cases completely stop the seizures.
This diet is high in healthy fats and low in carbohydrates. Your friend would definitely want to work with a dietitian if she decides to try this diet as it is very restrictive.