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The epilepsy and migraine drug Topamax, which is also available as generic topiramate, has been associated with an increased risk of major birth defects. Research has found higher than expected rates of babies born with cleft lips, cleft palates, genital defects and other birth malformations when the drug is used during pregnancy.

TOPAMAX LAWSUIT STATUS: After a string of court losses, the makers of Topamax agreed to settlements for undisclosed amounts in about 76 Topamax birth defect lawsuits.

>>SUBMIT INFORMATION ABOUT A TOPAMAX BIRTH DEFECT FOR A LAWYER TO REVIEW A POTENTIAL LAWSUIT<<

MANUFACTURER: Topamax is manufactured by Ortho-McNeil Neurologics, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson. Generic Topamax versions have been available since 2006.

OVERVIEW: Topamax (generic topiramate) was first introduced as a medication to treat epilepsy, which is a neurological disorder characterized by recurrent, uncontrolled seizures. In 2004, the FDA approved Topamax for an additional use of treating migraines, and it has since become one of the most widely prescribed migraine medications in the United States. The drug is also often prescribed off-label to treat bipolar disorder.

TOPAMAX BIRTH DEFECT SIDE EFFECTS: In March 2011, the FDA issued a warning that Topamax side effects may increase the risk of oral cleft birth defects, such as cleft lip and cleft palate, among babies born to mothers who took the drug during the first trimester of pregnancy. As a result of inadequate warnings previously provided, many women were not aware they may be exposing their baby to a potential risk of Topamax birth defects.

The FDA has urged doctors to avoid giving Topamax to pregnant women or women who are of child-bearing age and at a high risk of pregnancy. Alternative epilepsy drugs may not carry the same risk for the unborn child.

In July 2008, a small study published in the medical journal Neurology identified a potential link between the use of Topamax during pregnancy to an increased risk of serious birth defects. Children born to women who used Topamax during pregnancy were found to develop a cleft lip or palate at a rate 11 times hirer than would be expected in the general population. The study also indicated that children exposed to Topamax developed genital defects at a rate 14 times higher than would be expected.

The FDA required new warnings in 2011 after data from the North American Antiepileptic Drug Pregnancy Registry found that children born to mothers who took Topamax during the first trimester of pregnancy experienced an oral cleft about 1.4% of the time, compared to a prevalence rate of between 0.33% and 0.55% associated with other epilepsy drugs.

TOPAMAX CLEFT LIP AND CLEFT PALATE LAWYERS: Potential lawsuits and class action claims are being reviewed by Topamax lawyers as a result of the drug makers’ failure to adequately research their medication or warn about the potential risk of cleft lip or cleft palate when Topamax is used during pregnancy.

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351 comments

  1. Jennifer Reply

    I was put on Topamax almost 2 weeks ago, my neurologist prescribed it for chronic migraines…and within the first week of a dosage regime of 4-50 mg tabs. 2 in the am and 2 in the pm…i was lost inside my head…i was in a fog…my hands were frozen in a sense, and i shook like i had stage 4 parkinsons…the right side of my face drooped, and i was drooling…i dont remember much at all from the last 2 weeks, i was sooooo tired, but didnt sleep at all…when i called the neurologist, and told her i had a reaction to topamax and asked for sumthing else that i knew worked, not only did she refuse a different prescription, she acted nonchalant about the reaction.
    yesterday i went to my ob dr for a regular scheduled appt, and when she saw me in a wheelchair was very concerned and started asking questions…she in turn sent me to the ER where the drs really paid me no mind when i kept telling them i had a reaction to topamax…my dr ordered xrays of my back and waiting on ct scan appts because she is testing me for a mild stroke because im carrying all the symptoms and signs. i still have my headaches, and i havent taken topamax for 4 days now, and i still cant see clearly, i cannot hold a train of thought, i have tremors in my hands, severe lower back pain that has seemingly crippled me, and i have to concentrate to write my own name…this is sad for i have 5 children, one of them being 3 months old…so sad…all i wanted was some relief from migraines and now look at me…

  2. Dawna Reply

    I was on this drug for approximately 2 years. Immediately I suffered cognitive deficits, memory loss, not being able to count money, overall “fogginess” in the brain. I have been off of the drug for almost 5 years and still have difficulty thinking of common words. I can be looking at a pencil and can not think of what it’s called. I have no short term memory. On a daily basis I will walk into a room and wonder what I went in for. I have to make lists of everything I need to do or purchase because I don’t remember a thing. I was very sharp and on the ball prior to taking this drug. Now my family teases me for being so ditsy all the time. This is a serious drug that needs to be taken off the market. The benefits do not outweigh the side effects.

  3. Hallie Reply

    I have taken topomax for several years my eyesight has deminished. I now have seizures frequently I was told by my Dr it was for migraines and was diagnosed BiPolar at times It made me feel suicidal. I have a studdering problem from time to time and my memory is very bad. I loose feeling in my hands and loose control of my head movements. I feel as if I have lost my mind.

  4. k johnson Reply

    THERE ARE NO CONCLUSIVE STUDIES ABOUT TOPAMAX.

    This lawsuit has no scientific basis other than scare tactics.

  5. Jennifer Reply

    I experienced the horrors of topamax b4 i found this page. i dont believe at all that the terrible things these people have suffered r at all scare tactics. If u havent experienced what we have as a result of this devil drug then u have no right to really comment. Scare tactics??? Really???? Whats scary is that im 30 yrs old and i cant hold my 4 month old daughter at times because of the way my hands shake, or having a stroke and not knowing what was happening 2 me, or not being able to remember how to spell my name at times… Thats scary.

  6. Rachel Reply

    I was initially given topamax to assist in weight reduction. Initially it seemed to help. I started to have some problems with my vision which I assumed were just in need of a new pair of glasses. After several months, I started to become more forgetful and frustrated. I would fall asleep without realizing it. I felt physically and mentally drained. Eventually I asked the Doctor to take me off of it. We agreed to do so, within a few weeks afterwards I had fallen of my steps at home. My primary care physician advised my I had post concussion syndrome. I never actually hit my head. I got put back on the topamax to help with the migraines I got as a result of the concussion. The forgetfulness, not being cognitive all the time, I had basically begun to develop the symptoms of an ADD patient. The memory loss was frightening. My husband would send me to the store for a few items, I would walk around the store trying to remember what in the world I was supposed to be getting. He would tell me something and five minutes later and I didn’t remember him saying a word. After three months of this behaviour I lost my job. I have worked in the same business for over twenty years and had a sterling reputation with all of my employers….and I got let go. Today I still suffer from dizziness, forgetfulness, and am very unstable on my feet. After seeing a new Neurogist, I was advised that my symptoms were due to the medication otherwised nicknamed “dopemax”. This medicaiton should be removed from the market. There many other symptons I have suffered due to this medication. It’s frightening to not know if this will improve or not

  7. alena Reply

    I understand the frustration and horror stories believe me I have my share but topamax wasn’t my problem. I am only 21 and I have over 7 chronic diseases and take over different 10 different medications daily some of the diseases can kill me. However, you have to remember that if you take more than one medication, even with a supplement you are almost making a “new drug”. Drugs interact and 2 drugs interacting can make an effect that separately they would not make. I was also told I needed to stop taking topamax, however, I knew this was not a good idea, I have a BA in chem (going to med school) I know how these things work. Instead I talked to my dr carefully and saw what was causing problems. I stopped one drug, which I was on before topamax and all the symptoms of the drug “topamax” went away and I was feeling great. I then stopped taking topamax to prove to myself it was fine to take and I was in horrible shape (granted I was under dr supervision). It was not my topamax causing issues. It was a combination of medications. Most people have more than one dr and they dont really know which drugs interact and which ones could be making you worse which added together.

    Sometimes it will be topamax but in my case it was not (and had I listened to my dr I would be on different medication now) and I think some people dont realize that even vitamins and OTC meds can interact with this medication.

    I am not saying people are wrong but just think about it and be careful. I had many seizures due to “pure medication combinations” that doctors told me were fine together.

    Also everyone is different and will respond differently to medications and combinations; it may take a while to find the right one for you.

  8. mArie Reply

    I wAS on TopAmax for over a year. The drug is also calledStupemax by some.
    It put my life in chaos. One day I was A dynamic girl with a great careeR, the next (6 moS lAter). I was on the decline and soon lost a great high paying job. I Had memory loss, slow thinking, word rEcAll issueS,
    Cognitive slowing and loSt over 30 lbs to weAr I had to start eating protein shAkeS to keep weight on.
    I hope issues are reSolved w this drug. I’m still trying to bounce back.

  9. Jim Reply

    My wife has been on Topamax for around 5 years for migraines. The neurologists increased her dosage from 200mg a day to 400mg a day. This was last summer. Since then starting in August she exhibited stroke like symptoms every couple of weeks. Whe have been to the emergency room 3 times since then. She has no control of her legs, slurred speech, basically cannot function. They treated it as a stroke and claimed it was a severe migraine on day 2 of our visit. All heart tests came back good. She has had every tests run that is available. Each time she is in perfect health. Recently after our third hospital visit she was taken off of Topamx after a week. She began hullucinating badly. (A living hell for me her spouse). I have more to add but will stop.

  10. Shawnna Reply

    I was on Topamax when I found out that I was pregnant with my Daughter. She was born with Cleft Lip.. I am just now finding out about this lawsuit that is going on.. Does anyone have any advise or have a child born with the birth defects that are now being shared with those of us who were on the drug at the time of conception?

  11. Rachael Reply

    I have been on topamax for over a year now. I take over 200mg a day for migraines. Unlike most, I am not here to complain. For me this has been a miracle drug. I am 25 and have suffered from severe migraines since I was a child. I agree it does give you some stupid moments and at times you do get tingling in your hands or face. For me the tingling doesn’t happen too often now. It was more so right when I was put on the medication, but if your doctor didn’t warn you about the side effects of the medication then read up on it. Because most of what everyone has said so far (to an extent) are common side effects). Also, you MUST drink a good amount of water with this medication to avoid kidney problems. I have always been a big water drinker anyways. Usually about a gallon a day, and a take a One a day vitamin. The dr just did an exam on me a few weeks ago to make sure my white blood cell count was good, kidneys were okay, etc… If it wasn’t for topamax I wouldn’t be able to make it through one day without migraines to the point of vomiting and needing to hide in a dark room. This has been the best drug EVER for me! Weight wise I may have lost a few pounds but literally…. a few (0-5 from the med). I am a small to begin with, and really haven’t seen much change in my appetite at all.

  12. Diana Reply

    I have lost my memory becaz of Topamax. I cant even remember things that happens early in the day by the end of the evening. I lose my train of thought when I’m talking. I have been off of it for at least 6 months! My eyes are blurry and when I started taking it 3 yrs. ago I started hurting so bad I went to a rheumatologist! I didnt have rheumatoid arthritis.This is a horrible medicine and I thru my away!

  13. Melissa Reply

    I was prescribed Topamaxx following my daughters birth 2 years ago. While on it I suffered memory loss, fatigue, confusion, disorientation. It was so apparent that my boss, who is a veterinarian noticed there wasn’t something right with me, and suggested that I stop taking the drug. I informed my family doctor and discontinued use after only 3 months of being on it. Now 2 years later I still have memory loss. If I don’t write it down, then I forget it. Also I have moments of confusion that I contribute to the drug. I honestly believe this is an existing side effect of Topamaxx. I DO NOT recommend this drug to anyone!

  14. Amazed Reply

    I was prescribed this medication for treatment of bipolar disorder. 25mg in the AM and 25 in the PM for the 1st week then taper up to 50 mg at night. I continued the 25mg in AM and PM for almost 3 weeks. I tapered up the night dose to 50mg and a week later the Dr increased my AM dose to 50mg and my PM dose to 50mg. I know of the hand and feet tingling, the sudden onset of depression, the eye twitching, the sudden gastrointestinal issues, and recently issues with my urinary tract. My hair is falling out, I have lost weight, and I am fatigued but cant sleep and have recently noticed that my nails are softening. How does any of this treat bipolar? How does any of this help anything? I havent been on this medication very long, maybe a little over a month. I cant remember words I want to say, I cant focus on my work, I feel like an idiot actually. I was better off as an unmedicated Bi Polar II individual to be honest with you. I feel really terrible for all of us here who trust in the Physicians and Pharm. companies that have our lives in their hands. I am hoping this is all reversible. I am not taking one more of these meds.

  15. Deby Reply

    I was perscribed Topamax about 7 years ago for what my Dr. assumed was migraines. The sad part was he himself did not exactly know what was causing my symptoms for what he was treating me for.
    I like others that I read about had some of the same symptoms. Tingling in my fingers, drastic weight loss, memory loss expecially for math, some hair loss. When I spoke to my Dr. about these, he said, \”Oh, yeah that is some of the side affects.\” Eventually my family Dr requested that I be taken off Topamax due to the weight loss. And eventually my Dr. that was treating me for what he really did not know what I had, agreed to take me off, it really wasn\’t working. As of today I have been diagnosed with right angular closure glocomua. I just went for a eye examin to get new glasses and to my amazement I was diagnosed with this condition. When I mentioned to him that I had taken Topamax in the past his reaction was one of disbelief. He wanted to know why I had taken it, how long I was on Topamax. My suggestion is to anyone that is on Topamax, stop taking it. I feel that the side affects are far more damaging that the condition you have.

  16. Trisha Reply

    I was prescribed the drug Topomax for epilesy and migraines. I cant remember exactly when I began taking Topomax but then again, thats nothing new. I do remember getting back on it after having my daughter in 2005 and have been taking it ever since…even thru my last pregnancy. Like alot of the comments Ive read on here, I too have memory loss. If it happened more than 10 min ago, I forgot it already. I have no energy, always tired but have a hard time going to bed at night. When I do finally fall asleep, I wake up every hour or so. I always feel frustrated, angry, like Im backed into a corner and I cant get out. Depression is a part of every day life for me. Suicidal thoughts are also quite common but so far have been easily avoided due to my strong Lutheran upbringing and the fact that I have 5 beautiful children that need their mommy.
    In 2008 while I was pregnant for my 5th child, my seizures got out of control. I was having 2-3 a week. So they raised my dosage from 100mg 2x daily to 150mg 2x daily and added on 500mg of Keppra 2x a day. It still didnt stop the seizures. They had to induce labor at 36 weeks. When he was about 3 weeks old, he started getting real sick. I was taking him back and forth from the hospital to the doctors office. He was acting real weak and vomiting. Wasnt really eating. They kept telling me it was acid reflux, or jst his formula. After a week of all this run around I had takin him to the doctors again one a.m. He was looking extremely pale, eyes bulging out of his head, his face looked like a skull with skin stretched across it. I knew something was way wrong!!! I asked the nurse as she was taking his vitals what her take was on what she was seeing. It was at that point we realized he was no longer breathing. VERY LONG STORY short…he was diagnosed w pyloricstenosis, rsv, bronchiolitis and pneumonia. They told me he had the pyloricstenosis since birth and that its a genetic thing. The funny thing is, no one in either my husbands nor my own family has ever had anyhting like that. So was it the Topomax or just a terrible misfortune?
    Im very sry to all of you who have had the terrible side effcts that come along with this drug. I know how frustrating it is. But it is comforting to myself to know that there are others out there that feel the same way I do and that when I cry because I am terrified that Im not gonna remember all the precious little things that my children do now, theres someone out there who is crying for the same reason. Its just nice to know Im not alone anymore and that there is someone who understands.

  17. Carla Reply

    I was prescribed topamax for epilepsy I was taking 100mg three times a day. I lost more than 50 lbs. , experienced memory loss, extremely weak and lazy, it kept me so doped up I didn’t know whats going on half the time, I stop taking it but I still experience numbing of my hands and toes Im always cold and my vision, I now wear glasses. Before i was taking topamax its like they were using me as a test dummy they couldnt determine were the siezures were coming from so they tryed me on different seizure medications(depakote & lamictal )making my situation worser. I got pregnant a couple of months after they diagnosed me epileptic. Im taking these different meds and went to a routine clinic appointment, they drew my blood and my baby was born with gastroscisis (intestines on the outside) it wasnt genetic they didnt no what caused it but they seen it before in like 1 out of so many thousands of births the numbers were ridiculous i was young didnt no any better (17) didnt no to question the meds

  18. Natalie Reply

    I was prescribed Topamax in 2008 for migraines and fainting. I read the enclosed risks and side effects. I REFUSED to take this drug. There were far too many side effects such as skelatal pain, loss of language recognition, kidney failure and an ARRAY of other things. I am not suprised that this drug has now caused so many other problems.
    My advice, see a natureopathic doctor. Find the cause and cure it…do NOT just pop a pill to treat the symptoms! I am sorry to all of you who were not aware of the effects, and remember, that everything happens for a reason! Good and Bad. Bless you all!

  19. Tamara Reply

    After a year on Topamax I went off it. And a few short months latter I suffered major eye pain and fuzzy vision to start and then the eye pressure got so bad I lost my sight for a few months. I had to get multiple spinal taps and a multitude of specialists could not figure out how to fix my case. Finally a neurologist put me on an aggressive bout of steroids. A few months later I my vision got good enough to function but now I have permanent nerve damage due to the spinal fluid that had leaked into my sockets and caused the eye pressure to rise. I now have permanent major sight loss in my right eye.

  20. Shanon Reply

    I am on Topamax. 50mg a day. I am now experiencing hair loss along with depression, fuzzy vision, and confused thoughts. I have a doctors appointment in a few days to get off of this medication. I cannot be depressed and experiencing these side effects while my husband is deployed and I am the only parent to take care of our child.

  21. Paige Reply

    I’ve been taking generic topiramate for about 2 years now (I think… memory’s not that good… go figure). At first, it was quite the miracle drug–I was sort of in a constant state of migraine, and the topiramite made it go away. I didn’t mind the tingling fingers and all that.

    But in the past several months, I started noticing mental problems–confusion, disorientation, and serious memory loss (short term and long term, like I have dementia or something, but I’m only 21). A lot of the symptoms were similar to what I had before I started on the drug.

    I suspect acidosis. In fact, I started eating an alkaline-forming diet (lots and lots of lemon water, no meat, raw veggies, quinoa, etc) and started feeling better. We’ll see if it lasts.

    Oh, and I also have worsening vision in my left eye. I’ve always had a slight astigmatism, but now, from seemingly nowhere, I’m also quite farsighted in my left eye. I suspect topiramate because, what else?

  22. Robin Reply

    i took this med for years. when the migraines started reappearing, my doctor just ramped up the dosage till i was on 400mg daily. i couldn”t stand it anymore. i have lost memories of entire friendships. i have neuropathy on my r hand and arm. i have generalized pain and weakness. i couldn’t even sing, because i couldn’t remember the words. i have been weaned off with my doctors help but some of the symptoms persist. i have been a nurse for over 20 years and this affects my practice. please help me.

  23. Heather Reply

    I have been on Topamax for about 2 years, for migraines I currently take 125mg twice daily. Since I’ve started taking I’ve had blurred vision( halos when i wake up in the morning), Slightly elevated AST ALT levels, my MD’s are aware, intermittent vision loss in one eye (new normal eye exam so far), dizziness, so tired that I have to take a nap at least once a day. I developed asthma, since being on this medication, which I have no family history of this and I have no history of this, tingling on and off in my hands and feet. I have a tremor in my left hand I’m unsure if its related to the medication but its getting worse. I have very back muscle and joint aching. I have also had some reproductive issues. I also at times can even think straight, or remember simple things. Now not all of this may not be related to this medication, but before I was on such a high dose I felt like a normally functioning person I have a appointment coming up with my neurologist to try and wean off this drug since it is no longer controlling my migraines. Maybe it not the drug that is causing all this but before this I was a rather normal 27y/o

  24. tarcey p Reply

    i was on topamax and maxalt for my migrianes. from day one of taking topamax i had the loss of memory blurred vision the dizzness and the balck outs. After a year of taking myself off this med.i still have the same dizziness blurred vision and memory loss of the simplest thing like how to spell me own name, where i live, or even how old i was, and now it seem like i have more wrong with me than i did before. I have weakness in my right arm , and both legs, and chronic pain alover my body. I am on 39 yrs old and my husband alond with other drs say i move as if i was 95yrs old. And the a dr. put my 14yr.old daughter on the same pill before i realized it was the pill making us fell like this, needless to say i threw her pills down the tolite. I feel it is wrong for these companies to make these drugs and the are suppost to help u but cause so much problems

  25. Eileen Reply

    In 2009 I was taking Topromax for lifelong “common” migraines. During the time that I was taking it and increasing the dosage for breakthrough headaches I was experiencing side effects that gave me mood swings (I was either crying or being verbally agressive). 0. I was losing words which I blamed on being 63 years old. I began walking like a drunk and basically behaving like one. My therapist suggested that this behavior was from the Topromax that I was taking. My neurologist weaned me off it and the symptoms diminished but never left completely. Within several months of quitting the drug my symptoms worsened. At that time I thought that the drug had changed something in my brain. After all that’s the purpose for siezure treatment. My neurologist was adament about it being a safe drug. I never went back to him but when I became lightheaded and dizzy, feeling as if I’d almost had too much to drink, I went to see my PA suggesting that I may have a middle ear infection. She sent me for a CAT Scan which showed vasculitis. From there I had an MRI which was inconclusive. Next was a negative Lyme’s test, then a visit to the rheumatologist to check for Lupus. After four months of testing, it was ruled out. I found a new neurologist who thought I had MS. He sent me to a specialist who felt that I did not have MS but suggested I return to the Neurologist. He ordered a second MRI of the brain and MRIs of the C and T spine.He disagreed with the specialist and was not thrilled with my asking questions which I’m sure he felt undermined his authority. So he dismissedd me as his patient and told me that I only needed one doctor and it should be the specialist. I returned to her and she still felt it was not MS but that I should have a Spinal Tap just to be sure. The specialist referred to the possibility that it was depression. After my first meeting with the MS Specialist I started on Cymbalta which helped the depression but did not decrease my other symptoms. A TV ad concerning people who had taken Topromax led me to this website. I was beginning to think that I was a hyypochondriac.

  26. Ali Reply

    I took 100mg of topamax today prescribed by my neurologist yesterday to attempt to control my basal artery migraine symptoms to replace the inderal i have been taking for years, big mistake… hours after taking, i experienced dizzieness, numbness of the lips, left arm, left fingers, severe cognitive difficulty, inability to think, the neurologist told me to immediately stop taking the medicine and drink lots of water to flush it from my system, i will never take this medicien again, found this blog again, awful medicine, still feeling awful, but improving, hope the symptoms fully subside… my heart goes out to those of you that have suffered on this medicine…

  27. Renee D Reply

    Thankful to not be alone…I’ve been on Topamax about 1 1/2 years starting day one of 30 days to get off them !! What a horrible drug!! I hope the side effects don’t remain afterward?? Similar to most of u I have memory loss to the point of ” did I take my pills today” ? When it was only a half hour ago!! I suffer sleepless nights or sleep to much . Very moody at times . The numb fingers toes feet hands all the way up my arms at times!! Just drink plenty of water , how much is plenty because really !! Halo sinations , twitching at times …not fun , not fun at all!!! Take it off the market!!!!

  28. eileen Reply

    In addition to my comment on june16: My immune system seemed to be affected and I contracted c-diff, complete with bowel incontinence for almost 5 months. I was “let go” from my job as an RN for mentally handicapped adults and when I tried to apply for unemployment was advised that there were plenty of jobs in my field. I am 63 years old and no longer have the energy to do hospital, nursing home or private duty. My only alternative was to take early SS at 62 years old therefore taking the smallest amount offered to me. This drug really set me back physically, emotionally and socially. I am waiting to hear from an attorney.

  29. Jennifer Reply

    I was put on Topamax back in June 2007 due to headaches. Well, I started to have major problems. I had a few attacks that caused me to go tthe ER. I couldnt move my left side of my body for about 3 days. It was the most horrible feeling in the world. Well, then back in June 2008 I found out I was pregnant and got off the medication. Well, I lost the baby at 18 weeks; due to no heart beat! When I had the baby, they couldnt tell if it was a boy or a girl. They had to do test to see what it was because she had stopped growing. I had then and still have many emotional problems and major memory loss. It’s scary because I’m only 32 and this is not normal! Í was and still do have Heart palpitations. I had tons of blood work and the Dr.’s could never tell me why I had and have all of these problems. I’m not happy but still relieved that I’m not alone and NOT crazy. I know this medication messed me up!

  30. laquanta Reply

    i was a child at the age of maybe 16-17 years of age and I was taking this medicine for chronic migraine, which then my physician had spoken of me possibly having a condition called BOZLER migraine, which can be so severe that it can cause seizures or possibly fatal and I was a kid at the time, so imagine now, with all the problems that are going on now with the medicine, and i had the insurance to still be able to still afford them, iwould have been taking them, and I’m three kids later in life. Those kids could have possibly been mine. That scares me.

  31. Kim Reply

    I have been taking Topomax since 2003 for migraines and one seizure. My dosage is 100mg twice daily. Which as of todays date, I am happy to say have all but stopped. I have also been diagnosed with Lupus. I also have experienced some tingling in my hands from time to time as well as short term memory loss which at times I agree can be somewhat disturbing. HOWEVER, I was made aware of all of these side effects before hand from my neurologist. As i’m sure most of you have been as well. Also, they are found in the bag your prescription comes in from the pharmacist, all you have to do is READ it! We all like to blame others. Sometimes we need to start taking responsibilities for our own accountabilities. Since I have been seizure free for over 7 years, I have started weining myself off of the Topomax (with the help of my neurologist of course)

  32. Lorraine Reply

    Today I am 47 years old. In 1999 I was hit at work with a tow motor in my lower back, in 2002 I was in a car accident.Through all this I suffered with severe migraines. Believe me when I tell you I know what pain is. I have tried every medication on the market so when it was suggested to use Topamax I did. No one told me of the side affects.One day I was talking to my husband on the phone and got really dizzy. I hung up on him. He rushed home to find me in the bathroom hung over the toilet vomiting and perfusely sweating. I was rushed to the hospital and they did everything possible to try to explain what was happening. They had no idea. I lost my eyesight, was dizzy all the time, had no equilibrium, constantly nauseated, rapid heartbeat, shortness of breath, tingling in my hands and feet and could not concentrate. I went back to my neurologist (who prescribed this medication) for some answers and had what I called “an episode” in his waiting room. He works in the towers above a hospital and I was sent down to the emergency with a letter from him. No one understood what was going on with me. I stopped taking my medication because I noticed after I took the meds the “episodes” occurred. This was four years ago, today I need glasses to read and some days everything is blurry, I still get dizzy and have “episodes”. I have tingling in my hands and feet. I have no real memory of 2007 only bits and pieces. THIS MEDICATION IS DANGEROUS!!!! PLEASE RECONSIDER TAKING TOPAMAX. DON’T GO THROUGH WHAT I HAVE OR SO MANY OTHER PEOPLE HAVE.

  33. adriana Reply

    I Am Angry With Topamax.
    I am reading all these comments and it anger me. How can they keep selling this? My son was put on topamax after having a seizure. He started to get worse. He had tingling, numbness, lost a lot of weight, dizzy spells, vomiting and his seizure turn to epilepsy. So the Drs. kept increasing the medication. He started with 25 mg then went up to 100 mg. My son with get pain in his heart. Then thing got worst. He started to have seizures every 12 hrs. He told me mom, I think this medicine is making me worst. I told him the Drs. said you must take it and the side effect will go away. My son went to my brothers house. He had a bad seizure. I get a frantic call from my brother. Then a man grab the phone. It was the paramedics. He told me ma m your sons hearth stop. He died in my brothers arms. I am so sorry my son for not listening to you. I miss you. If this medicine killed my son, I will make it a point to get it pulled out.

  34. Steve Reply

    I have been on Topamax for a number of years and the symptoms are getting worse. Am constantly tired, affecting my work and driving. Suffering more epileptic seizures than ever, speech problems and other issues mentioned in this forum also increasing. I was feeling sick in the stomach and couching up streaks of blood before admitting myself to hospital the other night and taking myself off this poison. It was actually starting to taste how I would imagine Round-Up pesticide would. This is POISON and should be treated as such. Get off it NOW.

  35. Danielle Reply

    My doctor put me on 100mg topiramate 3 weeks ago. I thought I was having problems with my eyes I was seeing double, having stabbing pain in my left eye. I would get headachs, every once in a while every thing would go black. I went to have my eyes checked he said it looked like one of my nerves behind my eye was swollen. That I needed to get to a Nero because that means there is swelling on the brain. It took a month mean while I am gettin worse Had to see my famliy doctor who gave me something for migrains and pain. There were times I could not even spell my own name. Finally after about 6 week I got in he ordered a MRI, a MRA, and a spinal tap. he said there could be a tumor, a blood clot, or to much fluid. But in the mean time he want me to take 500mg Acetazolamide twice a day just in case it is to much fluid. Will in 2 weeks time I had a 3 test done felt wose then before felt like I was going to die missed work a couple of nights because I felt so bad and I was afraid of just dropping dead. The MRA and MRI both came up clean have a aneurysm in my right eye, spinal tap pressure levels were low. So guess the Acetazolamide was doing more harm then good. I still don’t really know what is going on feel a lot better with the Topiramate Alot of the pain is gone. I don’t know what is the side effects and what is happening because of my brain. But my doctor did tell me to read them and watch them and I have a appt. with him Friday to talk to him about the side effects. To decide if this is something that works for my body or is there something better.

  36. baidu123 Reply

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  37. Eileen Y Reply

    Thank Goodness I didn’t experience some of the side effects that the others have had from taking the Topomax. I too was on a daily 100×2 per day regime for several years. It wasn’t until November 2010 when I was admitted to the local hospital ER with kidney stones that there was a possibility that the medicine that was prescibed by my neurologist for migraines would have done this to me. However just this past week I had to have a surgical procedure to remove yet another kidney stone- I knew the symptoms from my hospital visit in November, had stayed well within any diet restrictions that the urologist had given to me- because I didn’t want to go through that pain ever again. Unfortunately Sep 5th at 5:30 in the am I am headed back to the local hospital for what I had a feeling was going to be diagnosed- Kidney stones in the right kidney. One was in a location that the urologist told me that he felt I could pass it, however there was a second one that would be a surprise if I was able to pass that one. The pain and pressure was like having a vice on your side – constant pressure/constant pain no relief. Normally two percocets would have knocked anyone out (especially me), I did this for four days until I could have the surgery. Again when I met yet another urologist he too mentioned about Topomax and the connection with kidney stones. After having the surgery I am still sore, but nothing like the pain that I was in- I could not eat-I was constantly vomitting, even the anti nausea meds were not helping. I was on a liquid diet as well pain meds for four days. The reason I am speking out is that others should know about the seriousness of the kidney stones, I had just renewed a prescription that cost me a couple hundred dollars-I will never take another topomax ever again. If I should get a migraine I will deal with it as it happens- no more preventive medications for me. Look what is has cost me- two ER visits (which we know are not cheap) ,visits to the urologist for follow up, and now a surgical procedure.

  38. Dorothy Reply

    i have been suffering with migraines for years. doctor put me on topamax and have been on the medication for a long time not nowing about all the side effects. i recently had a cat-scan done and the doctor saw i had two spots on the brain. couldnt really explain why only that it could be from some medication i was taken????

  39. Susan Reply

    i started taking Topromax in April 2011. The dosage was slowly increased untill i was taking 100mg a day. I June of 2011 my nuerologist increased the ammount to 150 mg dailly. I phoned her in Aug to let her know I was experiencing unusual bruising and hair loss along with the tingling, memory loss,and language difficulties I was already experiencing since starting the drug. She weaned me off slowly and two days ago was my last dose. After reading these testimonies i realize that the eye fatigue and strain I feel is probably from the drug. I have also been having lower right side back pain and will now call my PCP to have my kidneys checked. I wish I would have known all the possible side effects other than the weight loss, taste change, appetite loss and tingling hands, feet tongue face that I was told from the start were just a temporary side effects. I had a terrible time struggling with trying to come up with words and my memory was almost non existant. I am happy that my language skills have improved since starting to wean off the medication. Hopefully the bruising, hair loss and constant eye strain will improve, but after reading the testimonials I am afraid.

  40. John Reply

    After My neurosurgery I tried various meds until being put on Topamax. Immediately, I began experiencing periods of extreme spaciness. The worst episode was when I was driving home from a friend’s house about 150 miles from home. That was at 4:00 p.m. Then I sort of remember exiting about halfway home and the next thing I remember was seeing a freeway sign about 200 miles north from where I started. At that point, I turned back around to head home now being about 300 miles from where I started and I finally arrived home about 6 hrs. later; about 4.5 longer than what it should take. I went the clinic right after I got in town. They ruled out a seizure but decided to admit me right away anyway. My neuro stopped it cold turkey. They tethered me and put on a video monitor. Shortly thereafter, I began to wander aimlessly around the room for about 30 minutes. They determined that I was suffering from Topamax toxicity.

  41. melissa Reply

    hello.i initially was admitted into the hospital for syncope. for 2 weeks prior to this i had headaches and dizziness. the day i passed out my headaches were worse accompanied by nausea. the next day after being admitted, i had an mri and mra. i am a person who is highly sensitivew to meds and am allergic to alot of them. when they injected the contrast, i went into anaphylactic shock and stopped breathing. i was coded and intubated because i no longer was breathing. while in icu, the neurologist started me on topamax. at that time i didnt know how much i was getting. i was extubated and the dr said that it would help my headaches. i spent 3 days in icu and started getting tingly sensations in my feet and hands. i was told it was normal. but my headaches had gotten worse. i told the dr and he said it took time to go away. i went then to a regular med surg floor and realized i was having weakness on the left side of my body and my dizziness was worse. i couldnt even walk 15 feet without feeling i was going to pass out. my heart had all kinds of arrythmias buit they said it was from my pots. they then admitted me to the rehab unit to get stronger. here at rehab my symptoms got worse. im only 24 and it was as if i had a stroke. by now it has been 4 days on topamax. day by day it was so hard to stay awake. i had numbiong in my rt side of my face especially w exercise. my therapies drained me. i couldnt feel my whole left side and was not able to walk anymore. after 1 week in rehab i wasnt even able to brush my teeth without getting out of breath. i was seen by a psychiatrist for suicidal thoughts which ive never had before. then one day i refused to take the medicine. i questioned the drs. they said it was normal side effects and they thought i had chronic conditions. all tests have come back normal. after the 2nd day of being off of topamax i started feeling better. no more memory fogging or blank staring. so the dr dcd it. i started having tremors on the 3rd day of being off of it. its been a week of of it and day by day i am getting better. m,y tremors are less and i am slowly regaining my strength. my left side is still weak but getting better. i am now 3 weeks here and will be going home w a walker, bedside commode and wheelchair. this medicine is horrible. oh and i found out the neuro started me on 100mg 2 times daily. its no wonder i felt like that.im scared i will hav permanent damage.the recommended starting dose is 25mg.

  42. April Reply

    Has anyone had terrible teeth trouble since taking Topamax? I have had every tooth in my head worked on or lost since taking this med. My dentist has said he has never seen anyones teeth deteriorate as fast as mine have. He said it had to be the Topamax since I havent had any other problems before. Just wondering if anyone else has had as bad of teeth since taking this drug.

  43. Abby Reply

    Since I have been on TOPAMAX I have Lost teeth- some have broken and a couple have fallen out – I have excellent hygiene so topamax is the Only answer, I was diagnosed with osteoporosis since being on this, but never a mention that Topamax could be the cause, it’s simply logical. Severe loss of memory – can’t remember ppl, places, things, words, etc – , kidney stones, weight loss, hair loss, chronic pain, dizziness (vertigo ALL the time!), loss of overall strength and mobility, diarrhea, blacking out… Not sure if all of this has made my attitude change or Topamax itself is the culprit. I would be willing to bet that it’s a combination. My family/friends have noticed that I’m not the same ‘care-free’ person I used to be. I can’t remember? My eyesight gets worse by the day. With all the damage this drug has caused me, I have chosen not to have children as I can’t imagine harming innocence.

    The only lawsuit to date, that i am aware of, is in regards to birth defects. So I urged them to file for all the patients (us) that have suffered while on this ‘miracle drug’…. I’m sure we’re all gumming it – toothless, blind, blacking out and writhing in pain. On the BRIGHT side, we’re bean poles that can’t remember a blasted thing so we’re easy to spot!!! 😛 Keep the faith everyone!

  44. Topamax has ruined Me Reply

    Cognitive/Neuropsychiatric Adverse Events Adverse events most often associated with the use of TOPAMAX® were related to the central nervous system and were observed in both the epilepsy and migraine populations.

    Cognitive Related Dysfunction (e.g. confusion, psychomotor slowing, difficulty with concentration and attention, difficulty with memory, speech, or language problems, particularly word finding difficulties).

    Psychiatric Behavioral Disturbances (e.g. depression or mood problems)

    Somnolence and Fatigue (e.g. drowsiness, sleepy, tired)

    Kidney Stones: An explanation for the association of TOPAMAX® and kidney stones may lie in the fact that topiramate is a carbonic anhydrase inhibitor.

    FDA Instructions for Doctors:
    Patients should be warned about the potential for somnolence, dizziness, confusion, and difficulty concentrating and advised not to drive or operate machinery.

    Reporting Topamax Side Effects:
    You may report side effects to the FDA at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch/ or 1-800-FDA-1088 (1-800-332-1088).

    Side Effects and Warning From Topamax’s FDA Required Prescribing Information
    TOPAMAX® is approved for migraine prevention in adults only.

    FDA Reported Side Effects

    Numbness and tingling
    This is known as paresthesia and is the most common side effect of TOPAMAX. People have described this as numbness or “pins and needles,” most often in the arms or legs.

    Fatigue
    Some people may feel tired while taking TOPAMAX. More people reported fatigue during the early stage of treatment.

    Weight loss
    Some people may have weight loss while taking TOPAMAX. This seems to be related to the dose of TOPAMAX taken.

    Difficulty with concentration attention and difficulty with memory
    TOPAMAX may make it hard to concentrate. Some people may have memory recall issues. This reaction varies, but people have described it as “difficulty finding the right word” or “losing my train of thought.”

    Other common TOPAMAX side effects are loss of appetite, nausea, diarrhea, and taste change.

    Warnings and Precautions

    TOPAMAX® may cause eye problems. Serious eye problems include: sudden decrease in vision with or without eye pain and redness; blockage of fluid in the eye causing increased pressure in the eye (secondary angle closure glaucoma). These eye problems can lead to permanent loss of vision if not treated. You should call your healthcare professional right away if you have any new eye symptoms.

    TOPAMAX® may cause decreased sweating and increased body temperature (fever). People, especially children, should be watched for signs of decreased sweating and fever, especially in hot temperatures. Some people may need to be hospitalized for this condition.

    TOPAMAX® may cause suicidal thoughts or actions. Pay attention to any changes and call your doctor right away if you have any of these symptoms, especially if they are new, worse, or worry you: thoughts about suicide or dying, attempts to commit suicide, new or worse depression, new or worse anxiety, feeling agitated or restless, panic attacks, trouble sleeping (insomnia), new or worse irritability, acting aggressive, being angry or violent, acting on dangerous impulses, an extreme increase in activity and talking (mania), or other unusual changes in behavior or mood.

    Serious risks associated with TOPAMAX® include lowered bicarbonate levels in the blood resulting in an increase in the acidity of the blood (metabolic acidosis). Symptoms could include hyperventilation (rapid, deep breathing), tiredness, loss of appetite, irregular heartbeat, or changes in the level of alertness. Chronic, untreated metabolic acidosis may increase the risk for kidney stones or bone disease.

    TOPAMAX® may affect how you think, and cause confusion, problems with concentration, attention, memory, or speech, depression or mood problems, tiredness, and sleepiness.

    Do not stop taking TOPAMAX® without first talking to your doctor. Stopping TOPAMAX® suddenly can cause serious problems.

    TOPAMAX® may cause high blood ammonia levels. High ammonia in the blood can affect your mental activities, slow your alertness, make you feel tired, or cause vomiting.

    Adverse Reactions

    The most common side effects of TOPAMAX® include: tingling in arms and legs, loss of appetite, nausea, taste change, diarrhea, weight loss, nervousness, and upper respiratory tract infection.

  45. Pamela Reply

    Topamax has worked wonders for me and has enabled me to function, drive, have children, be married, and live a “normal” life, or whatever normal is. When I was first diagnosed with epilepsy at the age of 13 (I am now 34) I was put on Dilantion..I was pretty much a zombie, grades slipped, no interest in anything..so they switched me to Depakote…bigger mistake!!! Even worse side effects, I started acting out, had no desire to do anything productive…but once I turned 18 I had enough, my new neouroligist put me on Topamax and life changed. I enrolled in college and now I have a wonderful life. The only negative effects I have is the numbness from time to time and also the memory loss really sucks especially when you have kiddos.

  46. Ellen Reply

    I’ve been on Topamax since 2000 for migraines. It use to be that if I was out in the sun, even with sunglasses, I would immediately get a migraine. My neurologist (the best in my state) had tried all of the latest drugs. They seemed to work for everyone else I knew who took them, but they didn’t even touch my migraines. I was finally put on Topamax and Neurontin. About a week after I started this regimen I left work one day and got outside and realized I’d forgotten my sunglasses. Then I realized that I was standing there, in very bright sunlight and I wasn’t squinting. I looked up towards the sun and still, no squinting and no headache. I was thrilled and called my doctor to tell her.

    My doctor had explained ALL of the side effects and asked me if I wanted to try. I also read on the label, which stated all of them. So many of the ones that people have mentioned here, I have but the only one that really bothers me, is the cognitive impairment. People who know me will help me out and we laugh about it. When I’m around people who don’t know me, and I lose my thought or my speech is a little slurred and I feel like I’ve just made a fool of myself, I usually tell them that I’m on medication which causes this.

    I’ve gotten use to the side effects except for the vision stuff, but I’m 55 now and after 40 your vision starts to change anyway.

    I’m sorry for all of the people who weren’t told about the side effects when they started taking it. You can go to the Mayo Clinic website and it will list them all. Also, if you read the list of side effects on so many medications, most of these side effects are listed, including, “May cause thoughts of suicide.” Even the commercials for a lot of the drugs say that. If you are really feeling suicidal, it could be something else. I am also Bipolar and some of the posts here indicate that there are other problems than the Topamax. Just sayin’.

    ps Excuse any typos as it’s probably the Topamax.

  47. Theresa Reply

    I’ve had a long list of long term damage from this drug, but have remained on it. My Neurologist has always insisted that my issues were genetic and that none of them could have been connected to the meds that I was on and certainly not Topamax. After reading more of the news coming out and what more of the patients have been saying I’m less trusting of what my doctors have to say. If anyone organizes a law suit I have a bunch that I’d like to say to this company. Please contact me,
    Theresa

  48. Donna Reply

    My only complaint about topamax is the kidney stones and hair loss. Other than that it was a miracle drug for me. Stopped my migraines, in fact they are in complete remission now since I started taking it, even though I stopped taking it two years ago. I was 115lbs overweight and lost it all in a year with the help of topamax, and it helped my tremor. I stopped taking it because of the kidney stones and because I felt it was damaging my kidneys…but it was good for a while.

  49. Jennifer Reply

    I was on Topomax for one year for severe migraines. I started having my ankle give out on me. I tapered off to get pregnant. After my son was born I needed surgery for bone death of the talus. I have sever aritus in the other ankle. Joint pain. Before takng Topomax I was active playing sports felt like a 20 yr old. Now I sometimes use a cane to walk. I am only 32 yrs old. I just read about metobolic acidosis in Topomax. The timeline adds up exactly!!! Can you please contact me.

  50. Giovanni Reply

    When I first started taking this drug I loved it. I have epilepsy and this drug gave me 100% seizure control. Initially it made me loose TOO MUCH weight. BUT, after I had my first baby, I didnt have to go on a diet to loose the baby weight. I loved this drug. I could drive, work and all sorts of stuff because its like my seizures had disappeared. Sure I had the tingling of the hands and feet but it would only last minutes, so I could deal.
    Over a period of 9 years I have been on this drug in high dosages. This drug has f’d up my memory sooo bad! I donot remember anything from my past and I can barely remember how to get around my own neighborhood! This drug is very dangerous when taken in high dosages. My housband would talk to me or we may be watching a movie and I would be so sleepy that I couldnt keep my eyes open. This drug has also affected my sex life. My sex drive went away after taking this medicine. I still take this medicine because it is the only drug that control my type of seizure. My other 3 options are: have brain surgery or try another drug that could possibly give me seizures. I was also asked to participate in a study where they are trying out a alzhemers medicine on epilepsy patients with memory problems. I dont want to do any of these BUT I have to get off of topamax! Putting this one in God’s hands. Please pray for me. I want to be in my right mind within the next 10 years. I am only 32

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