topamax linked to depression

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wenmarie
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Date Joined Nov 2005
Total Posts : 63
   Posted 12/13/2005 6:23 PM (GMT -6)   
sad  I have been taking topamax for 4 weeks I am on 100mg.  It is working wonders for my migranes but,  I am experiencing the worst bout of depression of my life.  I am experincing extreme anxiety.  My ativan does not touch it.  Has anyone else experienced this and what did you do?

tymaboy
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2005
Total Posts : 59
   Posted 12/13/2005 7:58 PM (GMT -6)   
I read that that is one of the side effects with topamax & from what I have seen on this board is a lot of people on topamax is also on an antidepresant med. When I started the Topamax I had to start back up on my Lexapro cuz I have difficulty with depression anyway. I have notice (where I live) that a lot of people are having a heard time right now - it could just be the time of year?

Nicky (coquitlam55)
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Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 505
   Posted 12/13/2005 11:27 PM (GMT -6)   

Hi wenmarie,

It is a side effect. It does get better, but I still recommend an anti-depressant. I've heard Effexor is good, it is used for chronic pain and works as an anti-depressant.


Nicky
 
Fall seven times, stand up eight.
                 --Japanese proverb


tysmyboo
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Date Joined Dec 2004
Total Posts : 921
   Posted 12/17/2005 10:53 AM (GMT -6)   

Well, here is one of those things...Which came first the chicken or the egg...

Chronic headaches of any kind can come with depression...and heck I was depressed even without a headache...so how could I pinpoint it to Topamax, SO I DIDN'T.

I say that because I adore Topamax to the end of the world and back...However, I think it may be wise to be on a good anti-depressant that is controlling your depression before adding Topamax in. I am taking Topamax and Wellbutrin now and find that is the combination to keep me going, I just hope that doesn't change.

 


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Akpinko
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Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 12/20/2005 2:23 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi~I am Annie. I have been on Topamax for awhile now. Just recently (in the past month, the doctors have been increeasing my dosage). I am taking 200 mg. I take 100 at nite and 100 in the morn. I still have Migraines the same.I get them almost every other day. I keep crossing my fingers though. I am really hoping this will help.
I was wondering if the topamax could cause depression also. I agree with the other guy--The Migraines Alone can depress you. They make you feel alone. It's really hard to tell if it is the meds or just dealing with the Migraines! Keep your chin up! You are not ALONE!! HUGGS from Annie

Nicky (coquitlam55)
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Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 505
   Posted 12/21/2005 12:11 AM (GMT -6)   

Hi Annie,

Welcome.

I think you're right. It's the chicken and the egg syndrome. Are you depressed because you have headaches or do you have headaches because you're depressed. When you add Topamax to the mix are you now depressed because of Topamax and the headaches.

I recently read that depression and migraines are believed to be comorbid - often occur together. That doesn't mean that either one necessarily has been found to cause the other, just that people who have migraines are also found to suffer from depression. It points to the fact that both may stem from a chemical imbalance in the brain. I believe Topamax stabilizes certain neurotransmitters associated with the electrical impulses of the brain and anti-depressants stabilize the neuro-transmitters serotonin and norepinephrine (depending on the anti-depressant you're taking). It's very interesting to read about and very complicated which is why I'm sure they haven't figured it out yet.


Nicky
 
Fall seven times, stand up eight.
                 --Japanese proverb


Akpinko
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 12/21/2005 12:27 AM (GMT -6)   
I am not currently on any antidepressants. When I first srtarted getting the migraines they tried a few and they didn't do any good. Then a therapist decided I had been misdiagnosed for depression and I have Adult ADD. I Certaintly think that this is true.
It is hard for People who don't have migraines to understand what we go through. It Is Tough!! Does anyone else have trouble with their migraines causing pain in their neck shoulders or back?? I have migraines now almost every other day and even if I don't have a M/G I am in PAIN. The migraine doctor that I saw last month thinks that the m/g's are causing this. I have found that Soma's are the best for easing this pain but they make me pretty drowsy. I have been off work since April.
Take care Everyone!! Huggs from Annie!!

Nicky (coquitlam55)
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 505
   Posted 12/21/2005 12:37 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Annie,
 
I get a lot of neck pain with my migraines. I find there is a difference between pulled neck pain and migraine neck pain. I know when I have pulled my neck and it hurts and I have a migraine that is referring the pain down my neck and into my shoulders. I find that a soft cushiony pillow is about the only thing that helps until the migraine goes away. My neurologist says that Botox is good for people with extensive neck pain.
 
I had migraines every day. I now have them about every other day. I'm not sure which is better. On the days I don't have a headache I'm waiting for it. On the days I do I'm frustrated. Today was a particularly bad day.
 
Why do you think you have adult ADD? Is it because you have difficulty focussing? I have incredible difficulty focussing because there is a throbbing in my head. It has nothing to do with attention deficit disorder it has to do with being constantly distracted by pain, or the medications I'm taking to control the pain.
 
As for depression. I was diagnosed with it two years ago and probably should have been long before that. Now I struggle some days (like today) but I'm not depressed. I don't want to stay in bed all day every day. I don't feel hopeless. I have ambition again. I have dreams again. And when I don't have a headache I'm happy.
 
I was off work for several months and worked through the depression and did my best to manage the migraines. I have returned to work and am sad to say the migraines are still there, though the depression is much better. Getting up each day, going to work and sticking to a routine keeps the depression at bay. It also gives me the self esteem to know that I can live with the migraines. It's not easy but it gives me hope.
 
Good luck Annie. You'll figure it out.
 
Nicky
 
Fall seven times, stand up eight.
                 --Japanese proverb


Akpinko
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 12/21/2005 9:40 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello Nicky,
It sure is nice to talk to someone who understands! Sorry to hear that you go thru this though. I really feel for you!
Honestly the ADD problem was wayy before the Migraines. It just took me this long to figure out that I'm not totally crazy. I can see where you're coming from though. I have  lots of trouble functioning from day to day just dealing with the pain and the meds!
Before I last went off of work I would be on and off trying to work but working would really mess my neck & shoulders up and I would end up being off again.Plus the migraine med (Relpax) usually knocks me out. Do you crack & pop alot? Does your neck sort of feel like it has knots--that's how I decribe it. I have big knots of pain in my neck and shoulders and it has seemed to travel to my lower back.
Nicky I am so glad we have met! Take care!
                Bye from Annie :-)
 

Nicky (coquitlam55)
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 505
   Posted 12/24/2005 1:29 AM (GMT -6)   

Hi Annie,

The pain in my neck is usually one big knot, a constant ache. If I sit in one position at work looking at the computer it travels down my back between my shoulders. At work I need a chair with a fairly high back and then sit in a scooped position so the top of my back is supported. I find this minimizes the pain in my shoulders and my neck. Have you tried massage therapy for your shoulder and neck pain?

I agree with you. It is nice to find others going through similar experiences. Unfortunately it means others are suffering, but at least we're not suffering alone.


Nicky
 
Fall seven times, stand up eight.
                 --Japanese proverb


Life Coach Lisa
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 12/24/2005 7:13 PM (GMT -6)   

Hi there:

Looking at the post...it seems very familar.  My 15 year old is so "unhappy" with all of this.  She is blessed with Dyslexia and ADHD...so the migraines don't help in school.

I keep praying these feelings...and the fact of anxiety then leads to a migraine will shift as she gets older. For some reason, just in the last month being off the Topomax she has gone into "huge" bouts of panic attacks.  Never heard of a teenager not liking to go to the mall.  Gee, I even gave her extra money as a bribe.  LOL

These migraines is my research goal for 2006.  We know that the anxiety and depression play a HUGE role in ADHD...so i am "on top" of that.

 

Thanks for letting me share.  I am new to the site. 

Lisa yeah


Akpinko
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 12/25/2005 11:00 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi there Nicky. It was nice to hear from you again. Yes I was getting massage therapy 2-3 times per week. I believe it did help! I was at a stand-still of having about 1 migraine a week. My insurance decided this was not medically necessary so I had to quit going which really was a bummer. Since then-(October) is when I have been getting migraines again every other day. I am in the process of denying this but the insurance says even if my doctors say it is medically necessary~~THEY have doctors that look over all of my records to decide. There is no way I can afford $180 a massage!
Hello Lisa and Welcome! Sorry to hear that your daughter is going through so much! It seems that you are very supportive and believe me~~she needs it! Migraines are tuff and make it hard to function. I feel like most people who dont experience them or see people when they are sick with them just don't understand! I have been told a few times lately "You are just gonna have to learn to live with those migraines!" Yes I live with them every other day~ but why should someone who has no idea what kind of pain it is say that to me?
Does your daughter take anything for her ADHD? I have ADD~~found out this year and I take straterra. I tried Adderall and it kept me up for 3 days and my neck was a wreck!
Good Luck Lisa and keep supporting your daughter!! HUGGS to both of you!!
                                       From Annie

Crafty
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 12/29/2005 8:06 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi there, everyone, I'm a newbie.

I'm currently in the midst of migraine hell. Since last August, I had a huge escalation in the frequency of migraines, and now they're occurring almost daily. I tried beta blockers, which made me really sleepy, and two weeks ago, my neurologist tried me on low-dose topomax, initially 25 mg. nightly before bed. A week ago, I went to 50 mg., and tonight I'm supposed to up it to 75 mg. I'm just feeling so terrible right now, it seems that the headaches are just getting worse as opposed to better! Not on any other meds - I wasn't depressed, but am starting to become this way from the pain.

I'm wondering if I should hang in there with the topomax awhile longer. Is two weeks really enough to know? I'm getting pretty discouraged.

Thanks for any advice anyone can provide.

Caroline

philski
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 34
   Posted 12/30/2005 4:56 PM (GMT -6)   
Two weeks isn't enough. Stay on at least a few more weeks. For me anyways, I had constant low-grade migraine the first few weeks I was on Topamax, it really didn't help me till I hit 100mg. 100mg worked wonders for awhile. I'm on 150mg now and doing even better. Stick it out a little longer!

I did the same thing as you - tried beta blockers before Topamax. Beta blockers kinda helped a little ... but in the end topamax really worked wonders.

Stick it out but don't up your dosage too quickly. 25mg/week increases were good for me. Best of luck.

Philski

Nicky (coquitlam55)
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 505
   Posted 1/1/2006 12:29 PM (GMT -6)   

Hello,

Welcome Lisa and Caroline,

Lisa - Research has found that migraines are often comorbid with depression and anxiety, meaning that occur together. I haven't found any research that says either one causes the other, though they all involve brain chemicals in one way or another. My doctor often jokes that having a headache every day is enough to make you depressed - though I have found that I can manage my migraines and not be depressed.

If your daughter is having chronic regular migraines her panic attacks may linked to that, especially now that she's off the Topamax. Topamax may have given her some assurance that the migraines were under control - without knowing the whole story I'm only guessing. I know that when I feel my headaches are out of control, all I want to do is stay home. Large groups, loud noices, lots of noise, lights can trigger my headaches when they're occuring regularly and I would rather stay in a situation I can control with medication within an arms reach.

Does your daughter get counselling? Does she participate in her treatment plan? It may be that she needs some control in the situation so that she knows that when she goes to school or the mall she can handle any situation that comes up, even a migraine. Perhaps you could start now. If she's at school does she have the medications she needs to control the headaches and does she have an order in which to take them? When the headache becomes so unbearable is there a cool dark room she can go and lie down in until someone can pick up her? At the mall, same thing.

Good luck. Let us know how it goes.

Caroline - I read that it takes up to four months to see the full results from Topamax and the dose at which it is most effective for migraines is from 100 mg to 200 mg.

As for the depression - this may be from the Topamax as well, another side effect. I find that I have to take an anti-depressant with it to maintain clarity. Perhaps discuss this with your doctor.

I'm sorry to hear you're struggling. I unfortuntately know the feeling. This has been a terrible week and I've had a headache each day. It's hard to stay positive when that's what you wake up to. But keep trying. It is possible to find a solution that reduces your headaches and you do learn to live with them.

Annie - Nice to hear from you again. Good luck getting your massages approved! I'm sorry your headaches are back up to daily. Mine have been too this week. We'll get there.


Nicky
 
Fall seven times, stand up eight.
                 --Japanese proverb


Akpinko
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 1/2/2006 9:11 PM (GMT -6)   
Hello Everyone. I thought I would stop by and say hello and see how everyone is doing. We have some newbies! WELCOME!
I have been staying with my parents lately because I have had melt downs. The last one was really scarry! I was illusinating but I remember everthing. I had had one drink so I don't know if it was a bad mix with the topamax and the Relpax from the day before. I am still shaking and I have to call the doctor tomorrow. I am really lucky to have supportive family.
I have decided to try to quit taking the Topamax because it isn't helping and I don't think it is affecting my mental mood very well.
Take Care Everyone! Huggs to ALL From Annie
 

Nicky (coquitlam55)
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 505
   Posted 1/3/2006 1:08 AM (GMT -6)   

Hi Annie,

Be careful about stopping Topamax quickly. Stopping it can be as bad as starting it. Talk to your doctor. You will probably need to come off it slowly.

I'm sorry you're having such a tough time. Have you tried Neurontin? It's another anti epileptic without the horrible side effects and also good for muscle pain. I found this through experience, I'm not a doctor and have no medical training.

I'm thinking of you.


Nicky
 
Fall seven times, stand up eight.
                 --Japanese proverb


Akpinko
New Member


Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 1/3/2006 3:43 PM (GMT -6)   
I have been slowly decreasing my Topamax dose. Today I am at 100 mg. I was at 200mg so I took 150mg for 4 days. I saw my doctor today and she said that it was okay if I took I take 100 mg for a few days and then decrease it to 50 mg for a few days and then stop.
I actually tried Neurontin first and couldn't function at all on it. The neuroligist suggested if the topamax didn't work that we could try  blood pressure meds or beta blockers. I will definitely check into the side effects before taking them.
Thanx for all of your help and support Nicky! Have a good one! Huggs from Annie!

Margie Canada
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 1/24/2006 5:14 PM (GMT -6)   
I am new to this site. I am to see my doctor tomorrow about taking Topamax. I have been on amatriptaline (elavil) for three years with good results, but lately they have not worked. I have been having migrains again and have been so tired. The higher the dose the more tired I am. I have been off all meds. for 2 weeks. This is what the doctor suggested. I have had so many headaches in the last 2 weeks i not sure it was a good idea to go off amatriptaline at all. I was also on Neurontin a few years ago until I started loosing my hair and couldn't get out of bed because I was so dizzy. I sure hope Tomamax will help. I hear so many different opinions. How much does Topamax cost?. We live in Canada and do not have RX insurance. A little history: I had headaches as a kid. My Mom cut my hair because the doctor said that was the reason. I stopped having headaches when I was in my 20's. Twenty years later I had my first migraine and I was so upset, I knew they were back. I am now almost 64 and have continued to have them all this time. At what age do they stop. I heard over the years that they are hormonel? At 64 I don't think I can have to many hormones left???
The person I feel sorry for is my husband, as he goes through each one with me. I bless him everyday. Margie

lojma
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 10
   Posted 1/24/2006 7:59 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi, I just got back from my neurologist.  I have had migraines for many years and he put me on topomax last August.  I started getting depressed about then and slid into a terrible depression that just kept getting worse.  Today I insisted that I wanted to be taken off.  I also was on 100 mg.  Weeks ago I did some research online and found that depression is linked to topomax.  My doctor said that it isn't really, only as often as a placebo.  Still, I wanted to come off it to see how I feel.  Plus it has other side effects that are pretty bad such as making your thought processes foggy.  I'll take the migraines for now and see if the depression gets better.  Good luck.

Tiki713
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 1/25/2006 2:54 AM (GMT -6)   
That is all very interesting as far as being depressed while on Topamax goes. I started taking topamax in July and Nortrityline for my migrains.  Suddenly I stopped taking both of these medications in October because i kept forgetting, when i STOPPED taking them I became very depressed for awhile.  I recently started taking them again, but have been taking adderall here and there... I was wondering if anyone was having problems with their ADD meds and their topamax or migrain medication? 
 
Also, has anyone had any short term memory problems while taking these? I feel like my memory has gotten absolutely horrible and very rarely I blank out completely and forget where I am, almost like amnesia. Has this happened to anyone else? 

lojma
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 10
   Posted 1/25/2006 5:45 PM (GMT -6)   
Absolutely, I have had terrible memory problems while on Topomax.  That was another reason why I wanted to come off it.  I couldn't remember things I needed to do, or names of people either.  I have had word retrieval problems as well.  As far as I'm concerned, it's not a medication to take unless migraines are leaving you unable to function or if you need to take it for seizures.  Also, my urine was cloudy no matter how much water I drank (future kidney problems in the works?).  I am writing in the past tense, but I just stopped taking it yesterday and had been on 100 milligrams per day since August.  I'll keep you posted about how my "foggy thinking" and terrible depression progresses.  Believe it or not, some people were suggesting I take even more medication to take care of the depression rather than come off the Topomax and see if the problems clear up.

Tiki713
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 1/26/2006 12:44 PM (GMT -6)   
i started taking the topamax again about last week right now i'm only on about 50 mg a day, but that is supposed to increase to 100. my memory problems are horrible i think i am going to call the neurologist, but my migraines are gone! its wonderful. I have no idea which is worse, though, because with the migraines i would hear highpitched noises and even low background music that didnt even exist, and they would leave me nausiated and bedridden.

my urine is not cloudy, and i'm so thankful that at least topamax has not given me kidney stones (which is a side effect), considering i have a history of them (i usually get them from drinking tea).

Please, let me know how you're doing off of topamax. I did fine when i stopped taking it. When i first stopped taking it i became extremely depressed but after awhile i came out of my depression. One drawback was that I gained some weight bc my appetite increased and my taste for sugar/caffine returned. I actually didn't have any migraines, though, while off of it until about four months later, which is why i started taking it again recently. I would say be careful just going off of topamax cold turkey. I've read that not going off it gradually can cause seizures and horrible side effects that i did not know about when i just stopped taking it. Oh, also, during the time i did not take topamax i still had memory problems and word recall problems.

Hope all is well!

lojma
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 10
   Posted 1/26/2006 9:42 PM (GMT -6)   
HI, In regards to coming off Topomax, my doctor said that I would only need to come off it gradually if I was taking it for seizures. Since I am only a migraine patient, as opposed to epilepsy, then I could just stop taking it. So far, so good. But it has only been a few days.

I think the key is to weigh which is worse, your migraines, or the Topomax side effects. I know for some people their migraines prevent them from living a normal life. Mine are no longer that bad, (knock on wood) so I don't think the side effects are worth it for me. I could barely put a coherent sentence together on that stuff!

lojma
New Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 10
   Posted 1/26/2006 10:11 PM (GMT -6)   
Sorry, but I need to add to my last post that just because my doctor said that I don't need to stop gradually, doesn't mean that others should stop cold turkey. Please don't stop Topomax without talking to your own doctor. I will keep everyone posted on how I am feeling as I go along.
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