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Topamax

USER REVIEWS

Comment from: chrisca562, 25-34 Female on Treatment for 1-2 years (Patient) Published: January 16

I was prescribed this med to help with racing thoughts and it has worked wonders. It has controlled the thoughts and I do not drink nor crave alcohol at all. It is a miracle drug and it is a great weight management pill to boot. Two thumbs up!

Comment from: mercury013, 25-34 on Treatment for 1-2 years (Patient) Published: March 04

This might seem really weird review, but I feel the urge to post it. I took Topamax for over a year, but not for the usual use. I didn't have migraines or anything, but had/have a severe drug and alcohol addiction. I used meth for over 10 years daily. I decided to get help and had trouble kicking the habit. My doctor put me on Topamax and it helped considerably with my cravings and crazy thinking (well somewhat :)). I eased off of it about a year sober and am soooo thankful this was around for me to take. It had some weird side effects, like my fingers and toes would start to tingle especially when cold. It made me pretty tired after I took it. Also, if I drank any soda I would belch ALOT, but considering the alternative it was nothing I couldn't live with. I've now been clean for almost 2 1/2 years and going strong, thanks to this medicine and other things I do to stay sober. It may not be the usual post, but I hope it can help someone out there.

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Comment from: jlyons506, 45-54 on Treatment for 6 months - 1 year (Patient) Published: November 29

I am an alcoholic and decided to stop drinking (again!) about 9 months ago. I am also bipolar and take daily medications for mood stabilization and depression. I was not thrilled about taking another pill, but was more open to the idea when told that it could help with my weight loss goals as well. I had gained an enormous amount of weight in the past 5 years (80 pounds) from depression stemming from a traumatic loss. TOPAMAX is a miracle drug in my book. Today, I am 9 months sober and 60 pounds lighter. I have my life back, and have never felt happier. I literally have no cravings, and days go by when I don't even think about drinking. I would never have believed it a year ago. I will never go back to where I was. Thanks TOPAMAX!

Related Reading: depression | topamax

Comment from: katydid, 45-54 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: June 26

I took topamax to quit drinking. Only took a couple weeks. I have been sober 1yr. now!

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Comment from: HAWKEYE, 45-54 Female on Treatment for 6 months - 1 year (Patient) Published: June 07

EXCELLENT MED ! JUST A GENERAL COMMENT QUESTION . AS MY DR. INCREASED MY DOSEAGE I BEGAN TO WAKE UP DAILY WITH VISION DISTURBANCES . DOUBLE VISION , ETC. LASTING FOR ABOUT 20 - 30 SECONDS THEN IT WOULD SUBSIDE . HAS ANYONE EXPERIENCED ANY VISION ISSUES WHILE TAKING THIS MED ? ALSO , I MUST SAY THE WEIGHT LOSS SIDE EFFECT FOR ME IS AN ICREDIBLE PLUS . I HAVE LOST 55 POUNDS SINCE JANUARY !

Related Reading: double vision

Comment from: 25-34 on Treatment for 1-2 years (Patient) Published: October 21

i get migranes every day. since i started on the topamax i dont have them as often. i was taken off of the drug to see how much it has helped & after 1 week i was back to the dr. with migranes all over again. i had to be put back on to control the headaches. i did experience significant weight loss as a result of being put on the topamax. so with the loss of appetite i just make sure i snack as much a possible.

Comment from: Joy4u2, 55-64 on Treatment for 1-2 years (Patient) Published: September 26

I was put on Topamax for depression and for weight problems last year at this time I weighed 220 I'm now at 165 I eat well and more healthy not wanting junk food any more. not as many headaches as before.

Comment from: MyPoorHead, 35-44 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: April 21

I have used Topomax on and off for many years. I have gone off of it in the past because of the side effects I experienced, loss of memory, developed kidney stones, and dizziness were the worst, but this past year my migraines have been so bad that I have returned to the topomax and I don't care about any side effects anymore. I have never experienced migraines like these before!!! It's been 4 weeks on the topomax and I must say, the only side effects I've experienced so far, are a little weight loss (bonus :)) some tingling in my hands and feet and just a little foggy thinking which I can deal with..and guess what..not a migraine yet! Plus, it seems to have shifted my mood too...I was at a real low (probably due to the pain I was dealing with due to the migraines) but my mood has been through the roof happy, I literally haven't felt this good in years!. I will not go off of this again! I am at 75mg twice a day right now, I'm going to stay at this for now, but if the migraines start to creep back in, I'll get it increased. Don't get scared off by some peoples experiences, like I said, I've even had some side-effects I didn't care for in the past, but this time around I don't have them. Seems to be doing nothing but good for me this time!!! Couldn't be happier!

Related Reading: kidney stones | dizziness

Comment from: Alpaige, 25-34 on Treatment for 5-10 years (Patient) Published: September 21

My daughter and I both take Topamax for mood stabilization. However, it has affected both of us in the area of memory. Me more severy than her, as I take a higher dose, and for much longer. But, she's only 12yrs old, and remembering things is key in her life, and she has a lot of difficulty remembering things from week to week. I'm afraid it's gonna start affecting her performance in school. At her last visit to her psychiatrist, he upped her dose from 125mg to 200mg, and now I'm thinking that was not such a great idea. IDK. I think this may not be the med for her at all.

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Comment from: jeenefur, 35-44 on Treatment for 10+ years (Patient) Published: December 16

This was the only preventative medication that worked for me. I took it for nearly 20 years and recently found out it trashed my kidneys and I am in stage III chronic kidney disease because of it. If you take this medication, get your kidney function tests routinely.

Comment from: jgw, 55-64 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: August 17

I felt like a failure after years of seeing my own doctor and then specialists for migraines. I had some control of my excrutiating, debilitating, 2 to 4 days of migraines each week by using Relpax, tramadol and fiorcet. But my doctor of more than 20 years wanted to see if there was something else that could help. First she sent me to a neuorolgist who did NOT want me to use any pain killers. She gave me a scipt for the Imitrex injections (I think it was a test--if I was willing to put up with the pain of injection, I really did have migraine pain--she told me many patients refused the injections, which she took as meaning they had no real migraines) I did the injections along with the pain meds (following the correct amounts) and life continued, but then she wanted me to go off the pain meds entirely, saying more likely I was having rebound headaches. I disagreed. I've had migraines since I was a teenager and knew how they differed from headaches. But I gave it a try. I am a healthy, exercising, tennis playing, running professional. I attempted to carry on my life with no pain meds, including OTCs. I ended up losing control of my life because of the pain days. She then put me on Topomax and I became the "stupidest" I have ever been. My co-workers and supervisors wondered what happened to efficient, smart me. Hung in there for several months, mainly because migraines were down to one or two every couple of weeks. But my work was suffering. I asked the doc to go off the Topomax. That's when she gave me the only smile I ever saw on her, and said, "Some people call it dope-a-max." That was my last visit with her. Next I went to a pain clinic, saw a wonderful doc who looked at my whole lifestyle and put me back in charge of my pain control and heading off migraines as I recognized early symptoms. My fear is docs like him who really understand that some people CAN follow a medication regimen along with a healthy lifestyle are not easy to find.

Related Reading: relpax | tramadol | imitrex

Comment from: topamaxfan, 55-64 Female on Treatment for 6 months - 1 year (Patient) Published: January 13

I was prescribed Topamax for peripheral neuropathy in feet due to type 2 diabetes. I had been avery heavy drinker for over 30 years and knew I had to slow way down or stop. After taking Topamax for 6 mos, I lost all craving for alcohol but can still drink like areasonable person,e.g., 2 glasses of wine instead of 2 bottles. It was a miracle for me and has lasted for over 6 years. Alas, it didn't do much for the neuropathy but, c'est la vie!

Comment from: papergirl, 35-44 on Treatment for 1-2 years (Patient) Published: January 06

If you can bear with the side effects for the first two months, it is so worth it. I have gone from daily headaches and dehibiltating migraines twice a month to 1-2 migraines this past year, and they are manageable with relpax...no more trips to the doc to get a shot and a dose of narcotics!! As far as side effects, had the tingling of the hands, then someone told me to take a multi-vitamin and that pretty much cured that. The taste altering lasted over a year and carbonated drinks still don't taste right. Also had some moderate weight loss over time, about 10 pounds, that is easy to maintain... and I don't get cold anymore... But, as anyone that suffers migraines so bad that the press so hard on the back of their neck that they induce bruises; I say the side effects are well worth it. I go in to have blood work done on my liver every 6 months for my Crestor anyway. (can't imagine Topomax doing anymore damage than the 3 Alleve a day I was having to eat to get by before just to manage my headaches so I could parent my two daughters and run my business) So overall, I feel this has been helpful to me and my family and enabled me to recapture my life.

Related Reading: relpax | bruises | liver

SLIDESHOW

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Comment from: Tayler_Nicole, 19-24 on Treatment for 2-5 years (Patient) Published: March 04

I was put on this drug for severe migraines a few years ago when I was about 16. I remember some side effects but didn't really worry about them in high school. I just remember a bit of weight loss. I later started college and was taken off of this medication due to my neurologist being in a different city. I was just put back on it a few weeks ago. I have had many side effects. I was eased back on by taking 25,50,100,200 dosage changing per day. I am losing weight like crazy (not of my own choosing! I just have no appetite). In the beginning, I couldn't really think straight. Like retracting information was almost impossible for me and finding the right word was not going to happen. That lasted for about a week. Also, I am always fatigued. I am winded walking up stairs, have no motivation to do anything because I'm just so tired. I am one who swims a mile per day so I'm pretty in shape for an 19 year old. This side effect will sometimes cause me to get angry because I really want to be productive and push through that tired feeling but its tough on some occasions. Finally, the last thing is tingling. There will sometimes be a tingle in my fingers, toes, and lips. Not all at the same time, but just at random times ill get it and lose feeling in that extremity for the time being. It's an odd one. All in all, Topiramate(Topamax) is a good medication even though it comes with all of these side effects. I began with migraines every single day which would cause me to lay in bed and get nothing accomplished sometimes. When I was introduced to this medication (and a few others), my life was changed for the better in so many ways.

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Comment from: FlipFlops, 25-34 on Treatment for 2-5 years (Patient) Published: December 08

I was placed on Topamax 4 years ago and worked my way from 25 to 200 mg. I had headaches daily and migraines weekly. Over the past 4 years I might have had 3-4 migraines and the headaches are tolerable with Maxalt. However the side effects are getting a little much for me. I started out with tingling hands and feet. Especially with temperature changes, even my face would go pins and needles.... I went from 200-145lbs in the first 5 months. My appetite was gone, I would forget to eat and was just never hungry. Its not so bad anymore. I have also become lactose intolerant. I don't know if its the med or not. I would have to say the hardest part is the memory loss, confusion and slowed thinking. It started out as difficulty recalling words. Then realizing I could not remember recent events. Now I am to the point where I can't remember periods of time or how to spell a word or even my best friends name when I'm talking to them. My concern is when I do eventually come off the med, will I get my memories back? Will these side effects wear off? I haven't heard reviews on that... I also have a very physical carreer and have broken my ribs, hand and shoulder over the past 2 years. I bruise easier than ever. I have never felt this fragile. Blood test all came back ok... Overall very effective.. Worth a try. But with any medication pay attention to your body.

Related Reading: maxalt

Comment from: Bluhaz57, 45-54 on Treatment for 2-5 years (Patient) Published: October 21

I use to get migraines every day. Sometimes the pain was so bad I could barely see. After using topamx I rarely get a migrine. I sometimes get a headache. I have been using topamax for 3 years now with no real side effects except for weight loss.

Related Reading: headache | topamax

Comment from: Joey W., 19-24 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: February 25

After taking Topamax for the first time, it made me feel extremely strange. I got a tingly feeling in my entire head, it gave me a headache, and my whole body felt extremely fatigued. I felt more spaced out than usual, too. It was terrible so I called my doctor that day. He said "You need to try to push through the side effects, they'll subside after a few days." Well, let me tell you, they did not. They kept getting worse, to the point where I didn't even want to move or leave my house. I switched my GP because he wouldn't switch it without me trying it for at least a month, and it was torture. When I got to my new GP, I switched to gabapentin, which worked much better and has less side effects. He also said I may have been having an ALLERGIC reaction.

Related Reading: gabapentin

Comment from: Flyqueen30, 25-34 on Treatment for 1-2 years (Patient) Published: November 30

This has been a "miracle" drug for me! I have suffered from migraines since I was a little girl and since I started taking Topamax have only once had a hint of a migraine...Plus, Topamax helped me lose over 80 pounds, a BONUS side effect! Love it! And, it has been a moderate anti-depressant, evening-out my PMS mood swings...Like I said, it's a "miracle" drug for me! I feel like a new person now!

Comment from: kuem soony, 55-64 on Treatment for 5-10 years (Patient) Published: April 10

I guess this drug does keep my migraines at bay, but on the other side of the coin, I would like to find another alternative.

Comment from: 25-34 Female on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: October 25

I take Topamax as a mood stabilizer to treat my bi polar disorder. It has curbed my mania and done tremendous things to help me live out life in a much healthier way. Not every Doctor recognizes this particular benefit of Topamax. I use Topamax with a SSRI (anti-depressant). I can't imagine switching to any other drug. The key with bi polar is to work with a therapist who understands the disease.

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Comment from: nylasher, 45-54 on Treatment for 1-2 years (Patient) Published: October 19

A migraine prevention wonder drug. It has changed my life! I only take 25 mg two times a day, below what is recommended because that's what works for me. Maybe that's why I have not had the side effects so many others have experienced. No one HAS to take 100 mg a day if less works for them. Don't be afraid to try a lesser dosage because it really can make a huge difference in your quality of life. I have taken it over a year and have had three bad headaches in that time compared to two a month without it. Hurray!

Related Reading: prevention

Comment from: Minx569, 35-44 on Treatment for 5-10 years (Patient) Published: September 25

Been using topiramate 50mg 2x a day since 2011 for my migraines. Last year I've been taking only half the dosage that my physician prescribed because I had noticed loss of hair and I've been getting so fidgety and anxious. The anxiety worsened when I decided to slowly ween myself, however, it only lasted a couple of days. Because my hair was thinning so much, I knew I needed to stop. I want to add that my taste buds were so bad. I had to keep eating spicy foods to taste anything. Drinking sofas was completely blah!! And I love the bite that coke gave when you drink it. Been completely off of the meds for the past 2 months now and my hair is growing back and my taste buds are awesome. I kept trying to figure out what triggered my migraines and I logged every time it happened. Turns out, for me , it is hormonal. I can take excedrine migraine if need be but if it is past a certain point and I've not taken the excedrine, I use toradolor or ketoralac. This is a strong ibuprofen to rid the migraine. It's also a shot they use for those who go into the ER or urgent care. Pretty strong stuff. And I only take it when the excedrine doesn't work. I've had the same prescription for 30 pills since 2 yrs ago. I still have about 26 tablets. topiramate is not good for long term. Good luck to all.

Related Reading: anxiety | ibuprofen

Comment from: kristy, 25-34 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: May 16

I have been sober for 4 months and 1 day since starting this medication. I was a daily drinker, had no hope left in my eyes, had been to two residential treatment centres, and had tried to commit suicide several times. I was referred to a psychologist who prescribed this medication and it has been a truly AMAZING wonder drug for me. I had tried Antabuse and Acamprosate in the past which did not work for me so I was skeptical that medication was the right treatment but it was undoubtedly the best decision I have ever made. I wish more doctors and addiction specialists knew about this treatment.

Related Reading: suicide | antabuse

Comment from: EMTB_lpn, 35-44 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: April 08

After reading the horror stories I was scared to take this medication. I was immediately put on 100mg from the start, which my pharmacist thought was an overkill. I suffer from 5-6 migraines a week and have not been able to find a thing to help. This drug has been a true wonder drug. Sure, the tingling is a pain and no, I am not hungry but so what. I have not had a headache now in almost 4 weeks. WOW. I can live again. What a difference. The first couple of days I felt alittle sluggish but got over that right away. Really do not have any memory issues. I am a nurse, EMT and stay really busy with our community. I still get up in the middle of the night and run with our ambulance company without a problem (I take the med before bed each night). Each person is different....please at least try it. I will not be afraid if this dosage stops working to go back to my doctor to up the dosage......it really does help....even with the side effects. They aren't that bad!!!!

Related Reading: headache

Comment from: 35-44 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: January 01

I was taking 200mg, still had constant headache, side effects were terrible! No appetite, mood swings, tingling hands n feet, congnitive slowing, depression...dr took me off...this med is very bad for your body, kidney especially , pay attention to your body if used

Related Reading: depression

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Medical Editor: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP

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