Topamax is an antiepileptic drug, prescribed to control both the mild attacks known as partial seizures and the
severe tonic-clonic convulsions known as grand mal seizures. It is typically added to the treatment regimen when
other drugs fail to fully control a patients attacks.
Topamax is also prescribed for the prevention of migraine headaches (also known as prophylactic treatment).
However, due to a lack of studies, its not known whether the drug can treat acute migraine attacks.
Because Topamax sometimes causes confusion, dizziness, fatigue, and problems with coordination and concentration,
you should not drive, operate machinery, or participate in any hazardous activity that requires full mental alertness
until you are certain how the drug affects you.
Topamax has been known to cause a potentially serious condition known as metabolic acidosis (an increase of acid
in the blood). In children, chronic metabolic acidosis may affect growth or cause rickets (a softening or weakness of
the bones that can lead to bone deformities). Contact your doctor immediately if you experience symptoms of metabolic
acidosis such as rapid breathing, an irregular heartbeat, confusion, lethargy, fatigue, or loss of appetite. Your
doctor will decide if you should discontinue taking Topamax. Do not abruptly stop taking Topamax on your own; your
doctor will gradually taper the dosage to avoid an increase in seizures.
Topamax has been known to trigger severe nearsightedness along with increased pressure inside the eye. The problem
usually occurs within 1 month of starting treatment. If you develop blurred vision or eye pain, call your doctor
immediately. Discontinuation of the drug may be necessary to prevent permanent vision loss.
In children with chronic diarrhea or untreated kidney disorders, use of Topamax may lead to rickets and reduced
Tell your doctor if you have kidney problems or if you are on hemodialysis; your dosage of Topamax may need
adjustment. Elderly patients in particular may experience reduced kidney function when taking Topamax. Also make sure
the doctor is aware of any liver disorder you may have. Topamax must be used cautiously by individuals with impaired
Anyone using Topamax, particularly children, should be carefully monitored by their doctor for signs of increased
body temperature or decreased sweating, especially during hot weather.
In rare instances, suicide attempts have been reported in people taking Topamax.