HEALTH CABINET

A comprehensive list of prescription and over the counter medications.

TOPAMAX

Topamax is a medication that doctors prescribe to treat migraines in patients suffering from chronic migraine headaches. Most migraine suffers take medication when they begin to feel the pain of the migraine headache. Migraine suffers take Topamax daily rather than just when a migraine headache is starting. Topamax treats migraines before they start in an effort to lessen the pain from the migraine headaches or to help reduce the number of migraine headaches a patient may experience.

Doctors believe the migraines develop due to the enlargement of the temporal artery in the brain. Topamax works to constrict the artery and reduce the blood flow. Doctors believe this is how and why Topamax works to treat migraine headaches.

Topamax Warnings and Precautions

People currently suffer from or with a history of eye problems, liver problems, kidney problems, lung and breathing problems, long-term diarrhea problems, metabolic issue or any special diets like high protein diets should inform their doctor and pharmacist of their medical history prior to starting Topamax.

Patients taking Topamax should not drive a motor vehicle or operate heavy machinery until they know how Topamax affects them, as drowsiness and blurry vision can occur.

Topamax can raise body temperature due to a decrease in sweating. Patients taking Topamax should avoid exercise and strenuous activity in hot weather. This risk is particularly high in children. Patients developing a high body temperature, experiencing mood changes, headaches or dizziness should contact their doctor immediately.

Patients taking Topamax need to monitor their weight and report any unexpected weight loss to their physician. The doctor may recommend a change in the patient's diet.

Children and the elderly are more susceptible to the side effects of Topamax.

Patients who are pregnant or nursing should consult their physician prior to taking Topamax.

Topamax Uses

Topamax is a medication that doctors prescribe to treat migraine headaches in people who have chronic migraine headaches. Topamax is also an anti-seizure medication that doctors prescribe to control seizures in patients with epilepsy. However, most people know Topamax as a migraine medication. Topamax is an anticonvulsant that can work to prevent both seizures and migraines.

Topamax Side Effects

Common side effects of Topamax include weakness, drowsiness, dizziness, confusion, tingling in the hands and feet, loss of appetite, diarrhea, impotence, weight loss and difficulty concentrating.

Patients should notify their doctor immediately if they develop mood changes, unsteady or slow movement and language problems or speech issues. Rarely patients develop anxiety, agitation, hostility and thoughts of suicide or rapid speech.

Rare and serious side effects include severe back or side pain, rapid breathing, breaking of bones or bone pain, loss of consciousness, irregular heartbeat, abdominal pain, pain when urinating, bloody urine, chest pain, sudden vision changes and eye pain. Rarely metabolic issues will arise while taking Topamax. Patients should tell their doctor if they experience vomiting, mental changes or unexplained tiredness.

Topamax Interactions

Patients should tell their doctor and pharmacist of any medications they are currently taking prior to starting their Topamax prescription, particularly if they are taking amitriptyline, metformin, phenytoin, piglitazone, risperidone, valproic acid, carbamazepine or diuretics or other drugs that decrease sweating.

Topamax may decrease the effectiveness of some birth control medications.

Patients should tell their doctor or pharmacist if they are taking medications that can cause drowsiness including over the counter medications such as cold and cough products.

Topamax Overdose

Patients taking too much Topamax can overdose on the medication. Symptoms of Topamax overdose include lethargy, poor coordination, low blood pressure, abdominal pain, agitation, dizziness, depression, difficulty concentrating, and difficulty with cognitive thinking, speech issues and blurry vision. Patients experiencing symptoms of a Topamax overdose should seek immediate medical attention for treatment of the Topamax overdose.


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