§1. Brand & Generic names, Drug Class
Expanded Brand, Generic, and Availability Page
§2. Approved and off-label uses of Topamax (topiramate)
§2.1 US FDA approved use(s)
Epilepsy - by itself or with other meds, for adults & children. Migraines.
§2.2 Popular off-label uses
Bipolar disorder (works best as an add-on). Eating disorders - especially sleep eating. Alcoholism. PTSD. Weight loss - especially for weight gain caused by other crazy meds.
Expanded Approved & Off-label Uses Page
§3. Topamax’s (topiramate’s) Pros and Cons
Currently the only modern AED approved by the FDA that you can take by itself to treat both generalized, flopping around tonic-clonic seizures as well as partial seizures. You’re more likely to lose weight than gain weight. Can (but doesn’t always) work for migraines at 25mg a day with barely any side effects after a few weeks. Can (but doesn’t always) work for seizures at 100mg a day.
The promise of losing weight is oversold and often leads to disappointment. Topamax can make you dumber than a box of rocks.
§3.3 Interesting stuff your doctor probably didn’t tell you
Topamax may encourage you to stop smoking, in that you may just not like to smoke after you start and withdrawal symptoms won’t be as bad. Topamax can mess with lithium levels in seemingly random ways, and taking it along with Depakote or any other valproate can cause hypothermia (excessively low body temperature) and/or hyperammonemia (elevated ammonia in your blood), so taking Topamax to lose medication-induced weight gain can get tricky.