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Topamax (topiramate) side effects


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the wrong word pops out

Or I just can't think of the word I want

Or, if I can think of it, I can't spell it.

Generally disorganized and forgetful

seems like I'm losing hair.  Do all the anticonvulsants do that?

Nice effects:

KOed the migraines

no more RLS

lost 8 lbs

Less obsessive in general

Takes a lot to rile me up.. I'm placid...or is that complacent?

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  • 2 weeks later...

Well, I realize there is probably several posts regarding this and this one has dropped out of the running, but it must pop up often and it has been viewed quite often, so what the hell?

My Pros:

+ No more seizures

+ No more migraines

+ Major decline in cluster headaches

+ Seems to be helping some with pain related to my ON

+ I'm one happy little hippie all the time

+ Sleepiness, which for an insomniac is a blessing in disguise

My Cons:

- Sleepiness, which sometimes interferes at work

- Appetite suppression (I can not afford to lose more at this point, so hello to my new friend Ensure)

- My spelling sucks and I get words switched around when I type now (second new friend Spellcheck)

- Steak tastes like ass now, generally all meats really, which sucks for a corn-fed Midwestern raised girl like myself who loves a good steak.

- Sleepiness...oh, did I mention that??  Well, then I guess that leaves, my short-term memory which is sometimes a little funny.

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I take 150 mg/day for migraine prevention and it really does work for me. My hands get tingly sometimes. My appetite is still suppressed (been on it since sept 05), which doesn't bother me too much since I'm also on Effexor and traz, which may cause weight gain. I have lost a lot of weight, though, and if I lose anymore, I will start to wig out. Dark chocolate tastes salty to me and pop sucks. When I drank, wine did not taste very good.

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I don't recall what dosage I ended up with (I stopped taking it about a year or so ago) but here's what it did to me -

~Stupidness. My speech was delayed, ditto for the memory, and I really don't remember much from the time I was on it.

~Non-tastiness. I used to love Pepsi, until Topamax made it taste like carbonated yuckiness. (Citrus-based drinks still tasted okay, though.) Random other foods would also taste crappy, though I can't remember what they were.

~Tingliness. My hands (and sometimes feet) would get that pins-and-needles feeling every few days.

It killed my migraines here and there, but only a few weeks after they raised the dosage each time. The last raised dose made me unable to stop moving and extremely impatient/short-tempered. (Funny story - I was visiting a friend in the psych ward, and we decided I was acting crazier than her. Thanks, Topamax!)

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I took it for migraines.

Cons:

-words would literally disapper

-had to constantly use sticky notes to remind me of everything

-drinks tasted horrible

-tingling of my hands and feet

-calling things the wrong name

-did not work in reducing migraines

Pros:

-lost 15lbs of Paxil weight

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I think if you let it, Topamax can really improve your diet.  Losing your taste for hi-fat steaks, soda pop and desserts isn't all bad!

I hadn't chalked it up to the Stupimax, but I HAVE developed an aversion to animal products recently which has led to me eating a mainly vegetarian diet.  Also, after being a lifetime sugar junkie, I was able to quit the stuff without much angst.

I'm now 12 lbs lighter than when I started Topamx in June, with no attempt at restricting myself.  I lost 8 lbs right away from losing my appetite.  The other four have come off gradually from these dietary changes, which have been painless. 

I now feel almost completely happy with my diet, which consists of fruits and veggies (raw, as much as possible) nuts, beans and seeds, whole grains, and small amts of fish, cheese and eggs.  Two cups of green tea every morning, no coffee or alcohol.  An hour of cardio at the gym 4 times a week, walk in the sunshine on sunny days and plenty of orgasms with my willing boyfriend.

I may be nutty as a fruitcake, but I'll live to a ripe old age, probably. 

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  • 2 months later...

I've only been on Dope-A-Max for 2 weeks and am at 50mg, so that isn't really a long trial period. However, I have run into some side effects already. I'll list the stuff I've noticed, and come back and add when I encounter more-

Pros-

Already, added to Lamictal, I feel a stability I haven't felt in years--> it seems to be strong in my system

no more headaches of any kind. I used to pop pills for headaches and migraines and now they're gone

compulsions are diminished

Cons-

Strange tingling in my feet and hands- they feel like they're asleep almost

So far, no difference in the way I taste food or my eating patterns (I'm vegan anyway).

-- loon--

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Guest FrannyNZooey

I've only been on Dope-A-Max for 2 weeks and am at 50mg, so that isn't really a long trial period. However, I have run into some side effects already. I'll list the stuff I've noticed, and come back and add when I encounter more-

Pros-

Already, added to Lamictal, I feel a stability I haven't felt in years--> it seems to be strong in my system

no more headaches of any kind. I used to pop pills for headaches and migraines and now they're gone

compulsions are diminished

Cons-

Strange tingling in my feet and hands- they feel like they're asleep almost

So far, no difference in the way I taste food or my eating patterns (I'm vegan anyway).

-- loon--

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I just had to reply on loon's, hope you do not mind.

All except for being on Lamictal would be as though I posted.

Topomax is only mood stabilizer med that I am on, at present, anyway.

I am on same dose, which take at bedtime, for about same time, 2 weeks.

I feel much more stable, calm, same about headaches, and no need for pills for them, which is great.

I also will come back when on longer, right now, just same cons too.

I had tried way back in early fall, but was way stressed about everything, and felt all side effects on same dose and quit right away.

I was just way stressed about everything.

I am ready to try med for mood, and not afraid, or am I going into treatment in denial of need of the med.

I think that makes big difference.

Aly

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Let's see...... I had the whole words missing or being wrong thing going on.  I felt like I was constantly playing charades.  Me: "You know.... the square thing.... like a box, but not a box.... like this (hands making a box shape)...... you put the bread in it."  Hubby:  "Oh, the toaster?"

I also had the weird pins and needles feeling in my hands and feet, almost a thrumming sensation. 

Things that were supposed to be familiar would suddenly be not familiar to me.  I stood outside my car one time for 10 minutes thinking, "Is that my car?  It looks like my car.  It looks like my stuff in my car, but I don't know if it's my car."  I also got lost at a football game one time. I walked a little ways away from my husband to take a picture, and then when I turned around it seemed as if someone had dropped me off in the middle of somewhere I had never been, in the middle of people I had never seen.  Odd, that.

Simple things would really escape me. I tried sewing on a button one time and could NOT tie a knot in the thread.  Didn't know how anymore. 

I never had any appetite or taste effects.  Dammit.  I could lose some weight and be okay.

I had to go off Topamax for a while because of insurance issues, but I am starting it again tonight, so we will see how it goes.

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I'm only on 75mgs. so far and I have to say I really don't have many bothersome SE.

- occasionally words will escape me

- slight pins and needles

- spelling seems a bit worse, but I already suck here

- a couple irratable/rage outbursts

- soda taste different but not "like ass" to me yet.  I just have no desire to drink it.

On a more positive note:

- I seem to feel less panic/anxiety

- I am sleeping well

- No headaches

- No urge to shop/online spending sprees

- No urge to drink a bottle of wine when I make dinner

- I actually am making dinner for the family again

- I have energy again

- I have been leaving the house...going to the grocery store...things I was leaving hubby to do

I am only taking Topamax at the moment and am titrating up by 25mgs. per wk.  to my sweet spot.

I drink about 80+ oz. of H2O a day per Dr. He thinks it really helps to lessen with some of the side effects???  Plus the kidney stone thingy.  I haven't had many bad SE, so maybe I'm just lucky or the H2O is helping me.  Or maybe I have wacked out temporal lobes??? 

I will be honest and admit that I was hoping to get some of the lack of appetite side effect that some see, but I think that since I am seeing so little side effects that I will probably be one that doesn't see this side effect, as my appetite is perfecty normal.  It doesn't matter as long as the med works, and I have been feeling really calm for the most part on the Topa.  Which is very nice and overall most important.

aimee

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Guest FrannyNZooey

With new stress, I now take 50 mg in Am also, as said before only mood stabilizer, and have been believed to have bipolar 1 beside initial panic/anxiety, and PTSD.

It is keeping me together these last few days, No cying, mood swings, wanting to shop, or run off.

So, truly that is good.

And yes still staying sober, and NO URGE to drink!

Prior in past couple years that was my new found crutch, so this is so good!

I did notice on new dosage, but did just titrate up Monday, that soda that evening already did taste like ass, but that is good, making me drink more water, teas freshly brewed.

Appetite, same, not into greasy stuff, which is good for my belly, but so crave chocolate in middle of night, but then again I have my period, and all this stress this week.

And, I am eating like very small baby size brownie, not whole tray.

I do have pins and needles in hands now too.

But hey no headaches, no crying, no manic feelings.

This is all good.

Especially with all I am facing.

And L-A-Tik, I notice where you wrote getting acne, was that on 50 or 75 dose?

I would get zit with period, and scars from cuts not heal quick at all on 50 dose.

I notice on 100 I did not get any break out with period, and scar from accident, and cut I did, is really fading, hubby and doctor both noticed, asked what using if got scar, silicone cream.

So, maybe for each person it is the dose to work for the skin.

Just thought I would let you know that.

Maybe 75 will begin to show improvement for you, or if go to 100.

Will check back, and let know, if tdoc feels I need to increase to 100 at bedtime from 50, so total then 150. I am really trying to just do Topomax, it really seems to do the trick on my brain.

And I always hope the least the best with adding on more meds.

I am sleeping better, I just fight it at night, put it off, since  am at home alone during day, and so lonely, without car, and injuries still.

Just makes long day.

I kind of like being awake with hubby laying asleep next to me.

I guess thinking maybe soon I won't have that.

Aly

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Guest FrannyNZooey

In all seriousness, psychosis.  My daughter started hallucinating on this drug.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I am so sorry to hear that. I guess why doctors do very close check ups and titrate slowly.

I could not tolerate Dpakote, made me very ill, and Lithobid, at 600 mg was not at therapeutic levels so told, made me feel happier for while, but seriously did notice when that cycle came did nothing, and 900 mg made me toxic, very ill. I got very wacked out from ssri's such as Zoloft, effexor, paxil, all given when first noticed my "depression". It was horrid, as was Remeron, Oh God that was my blackest cloud of all for me, that was last before the Depakote, then lithobid.

So, Topomax has been the only thing that saved me from killer migraines, severe feelings of wanting to stay in and hide, or go out and never want to come home.

Not great way to live a life as a woman with a career, and mostly wife, mother of two children.

oddest thing is, it only manifest it self in worse form after I lost my second brother to tradgic death same as first, I was 36 years old.

Up till them, I seem to be able to move with the flow, work with the up times, rest with the down times. I could tell and schedule monitor myself.

After that, I no longer had control, it had control of me.

That was the scariest moment, feeling of my life.

To feel you are no longer in control of your very own mind, being, self.

Topomax has given me hope back, and in a very challenging time of my life.

I wish your daughter best.

Aly

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