Topamax (Topiramate)

What is Topamax?

Topamax (Topiramate) is a generic drug taken orally to prevent seizures associated with epilepsy. This is also a prescription drug that is basically recommended for patients who have not received any benefit from taking other conventional anti-epilepsy medications. Though the precise mechanism by which Topamax (Topiramate) functions is not known, scientific researched have hinted that the generic drug has the potential to amend neurotransmitters in the brain. Neurotransmitters are chemicals that nerves manufacture and use to communicate with other nearby nerves.


Topamax (Topiramate) Facts

By changing the production or action of the neurotransmitters, chemicals nerves produce to communicate with close by nerves, this generic drug may suppress the abnormal activity of the nerves in the brain that cause the seizures or may prevent the unusual activity from spreading to other nerves. This generic drug is also used to prevent migraine headaches. The prescription drug is available in tablet form in doses of 25 mg, 100 mg, 200 mg and sprinkle capsule doses of 15 mg and 25 mg.

Topamax (Topiramate) Indications

Topamax (Topiramate) is a prescription drug available with all authorized drug store pharmacy. This prescription drug is used individually or in combination with other anti-seizure drugs to cure adults and children in the age group of two to 12 years suffering from partial seizures or generalized tonic-clonic seizures characterized by prolonged contraction of muscles that causes rigidity as well as jerking movements. Topamax (Topiramate) sprinkle capsules are approved for treatment without other drugs in patients 10 years of age and older, while this generic drug is is used in patients aged two years and older with seizures associated with the Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome an acute form of epilepsy that accounts for up to 10 per cent of all cases of childhood epilepsy. This prescription drug can only prevent migraine headaches or reduce the number of attacks, but will not treat a headache that has already begun.

Topamax (Topiramate) Dosage

The normal daily dosage of Topamax (Topiramate) is initially low about 25 mg or 50 mg, and is increased gradually by 25 mg to 50 mg every week until an effective daily dosage of this generic drug is reached. Such slow approach in therapy with this prescription drug actually lessens the side effects of the medication. For children, the initial dosage of Topamax (Topiramate) is up to 25 mg (1mg to 3 mg/kg/day) taken every night during the first week. The dosage of this generic drug is enhanced at one or two week intervals by 1 mg to 3 mg/kg/day. The usual adult daily dose of this prescription drug is 200 mg taken twice daily, but some adult patients may start experiencing a clinical response at 200 mg per day. On the other hand, some patients require higher doses than 200 mg every day. This medication can be taken with or without food, but it should always be taken with a full glass of water. One should either swallow the Topamax (Topiramate) capsules as a whole, or open them and sprinkle the medicine into a spoonful of apple sauce or any other liquid and take the mixture completely. While taking this medication it is important for patients to maintain an adequate fluid intake in order to minimize the risk of kidney stones. To ensure this generic is not causing harmful effects, patients need their blood tested on a regular basis.

Topamax (Topiramate) Side Effects

The most common side effects of Topamac (Topiramate) in adults include tiredness, dizziness, coordination problems, speech problems, changes in vision or double vision, difficulty with memory, and sensory distortion. Among children, the most common side effects of this prescription drug are drowsiness, tiredness, appetite loss, and nervousness, difficulty with concentration/attention, weight decrease, aggressive reaction and difficulty with memory. Like any other antiepileptic generic drugs, this prescription drug may result in increased risk of suicidal thinking and behavior. Hence, anyone considering the use of antiepileptic prescription drugs must balance this risk of suicide with the clinical need. Contact your doctor immediately if you have any signs of allergic reaction to Topamax (Topiramate) like hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat. Get immediate medical help if you have any new or worsening symptoms like mood or behavior changes, depression, anxiety, or if you feel agitated, hostile, restless, hyperactive, or have thoughts about suicide or hurting yourself.

Topamax (Topiramate) Precautions

Tell your physician regarding your entire medical history, including allergies, liver and kidney ailments, lung or breathing problems, surgery, special diets and chronic diarrhea. Drink plenty of fluids to avoid kidney stones and reduce consumption of alcoholic beverages. Caution should be exercised while giving the generic drug to children as it may affect their growth rate, bone health and final height. As this prescription drug induces drowsiness, adults should be careful while driving or using machinery. Topamax (Topiramate) should only be used during pregnancy when it is absolutely necessary. Nursing mothers need to consult their doctors before taking this generic drug.

Topamax (Topiramate) Interactions

Topamax (Topiramate) interacts with certain medications and, hence, before starting to use this generic drug tell your doctor about all the prescription drugs, over-the-counter and herbal medications used by you, especially phenytoin, carbamazepine, other drugs like acetazolamide, anticholinergics such as amitriptyline or haloperidol that cause decreased sweating. Also inform your doctor regarding if you are taking any medication that can make you drowsy, such as sedatives, sleep medicines, psychiatric medications, narcotic pain relievers, certain antihistamines, anti-anxiety drugs, other anti-seizure drugs. This prescription drug may interfere with the effectiveness of birth control pills. In addition, when medications like acetazolamide (Diamox), dorzolamide (Trusopt), methazolamide (Neptazane), dichlorphenamide (Daranide) are taken with Topamax (Topiramate) it enhances the risks of having kidney stones. Besides,Tegretol (Carbamazepine) and Dilatin (Phenytoin) considerably decrease the amount of Topiramate in the body by increasing its elimination from the body. Consequently, this generic drug may lose effectiveness unless the doses are increased.