Need help in deciding on trying Topamax

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Hth's Sweet Girl
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Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 6/30/2005 6:33 AM (GMT -7)   

Hello - I am new - and I need some help.

I started taking Topamax about 2 months ago, and I absolutely love it.  I've lost about 12 pounds and have been migraine free.  Before Topamax I was on Amitripaline, and gained 35 pounds.  So, why do I need help?  Well, I have been battling what I can only call itching/burning sensations (down there), as well as not being able to get to the big "O" ever since.  I am quiet frustrated.  I've looked at every website for possible side effects and haven't seen a lot of people listing these as common, so I'm a little worried.  Are these symptoms common with Topamax - or should I be looking toward other areas of of life (stress, vitamins, etc.)?  **SIGH** 

Oh - I should mention that I have been happily married for 10 years, and my husband is very supportive and loving - I have also been to the OBGYN twice in 2 weeks for treatment and they are as stumped as I am....

Does anyone have any advice for this poor old soul?? sad


Shelleyjelly
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Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 9
   Posted 6/30/2005 7:00 AM (GMT -7)   
I tried Topamax for 3-4 weeks, but I gave it up because I had such horrible daily headaches while taking it.  As soon as I stopped taking it those horrible headaches stopped.  My neuro was surprised because he said Topamax helps a lot of people to prevent migraines.  It just didn't agree with me.  I'm taking Atenolol as a preventative right now (actually took it for several years with great results).  I was trying Topamax because I started having so many headaches; I think my body has been adjusting to the Atenolol.  I still have lots of headaches, but not like I did on Topamax.  
 
If you're having a lot of migraines trouble, I'd give it a try.  It's hard to know what will work for you.
God has a plan for me.


Hth's Sweet Girl
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Date Joined Jun 2005
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   Posted 6/30/2005 7:24 AM (GMT -7)   

So true.  Part of me is afraid to go off of the Topamax (if I need to) because my headaches have been so good lately - since I'm not sure what my other options are - so thanks for suggesting something else! 

Since genetics are against me, I am mostly prone to weight gain with most medications so I was so pleased with I started to lose weight with this one.  Then when I started getting infections I was not real happy.  I'm hoping it's not the Topamax and it's the vitamins I was taking for my acne that I started taking around the same time (keep your fingers crossed)!  I have been noticing that I am having trouble reaching "O" - and that is normally not the case at all - so has anyone - anyone at all - had this happen????


Pegasis
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Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 118
   Posted 6/30/2005 10:33 AM (GMT -7)   

Hth's sweet girl--Here are some possibilities:

Some women get frequent Urinary tract infections with Topamax. They drink lots of water to keep bacteria flowing out. If you had a urinary tract infection you would have burning when you urinate, but I don't think you would have itching. It is important, though, to wash yourself and urinate soon after intercourse.

You've had a gyn check and have no infection, right? You might have dryness. Try applying a feminine cream during the day; a lubricant when you're with your husband; let him apply it.  If you and your husband are in agreement, perhaps you can try stimulating each other by hand only. If that still doesn't work for you, you might try that when you are alone and see if you can find a touch that works for you. You can then guide your husband.

Your new medicine has had an affect on your body chemistry. I'm so glad that you have a very loving and supportive husband! While your body gets accustomed to the Topamax, it might take longer, or require a different touch to reach the big "O" but, you might just discover that the time spent in closeness with each other is well worth it.

~~Pegasis yeah


Hth's Sweet Girl
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Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 6/30/2005 10:43 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks for your suggestions Pegasis - you know, I thought about urinary infection, but you're right - it wouldn't cause the itching. I thought about dryness too - but I've been having LOTS of discharge along with the itching - which led me to believe yeast infection.  Both times I went to the OB the cultures came back negative - but they said that was because I had already started an over-the-counter treatment. 
 
I think you're right about my body chemistry being completely different now - I guess I have to try different things, different ways to find the right "fit".  :-)
 
I appreciate any and all advice I can get though!!  I just want to get back to doing things I used to be able to enjoy - you know?

tiadesai
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Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 15
   Posted 7/1/2005 2:31 AM (GMT -7)   
Though topamax is said to be very good for migraines. mood variations it has also helps in losing weight.
However the side effects are many of these drug and it all depends on the person, like differebt side effects for different person.
Discuss with your doctor the side effects that may occur after taking topamax and asking him when to stop if some serious side effect occrus.
Thanks

Pegasis
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 118
   Posted 7/1/2005 11:10 AM (GMT -7)   

Sweet Girl---I sure know what you mean about wanting to be able to do the things you used to enjoy.  Hopefully it won't take much longer to get there.  You could be right, that it's a yeast infection, and the doc's right, too, that the culture would be negative since you started treating it. (I would, too. You don't want to wait for an appointment; you want to start relief NOW!) Think back......if the condition came back quickly, you might have to get the doctor to prescribe a pill or two for your husband. Guys can catch this from you and not have any symptoms. Then they can pass it right back to you. (It happened to my husband and me, and it took quite a while before I saw my doctor about my repeated infections; I was treating them myself. They would go away, and keep coming back.) Also, if it repeats, it could be candida, not yeast. Either one of those can cause the burning and itching.

Assuming you've got the diagnosis, you're getting treatment, and you still have visable discharge, remove as much of it as possible, with something mild, like a baby wipe. Do that frequently, but not so often that it irritates your tender skin; the object is to remove as much of the irritant as you can. Hemorrhoid cleansing pads are good, too; and you can flush those.

As for the "O"ther problem. Wait until the infection is completely gone and you don't have any more irritation. Then don't worry about what you are anxious to feel. Think about what you DO feel, and stay in the moment. Don't TRY. Just do...for awhile. Go back to my other letter if you need a refresher. 

 

~~Pegasis yeah

 


Dollyrose
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Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 10
   Posted 7/2/2005 1:07 PM (GMT -7)   
:-)  I recently was put on the lowest dose of Topamax (25 mg) with instructions to increase one pill each week for a total of 8 pills.  This was from a pain management doctor for sciatic nerve pain that won't quit,  Has anyone had any experience along these lines with this medication?  I must admit that I, too, am kind of afraid of this stuff after reading all the side effects, but i am willing to give it a try because the alternative is not a happy one. 

Teri16
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Date Joined Dec 2003
Total Posts : 5230
   Posted 7/2/2005 3:39 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi and Welcome to HealingWell, Dollyrose!! tongue
 
Realizing that everyone is a quite different in their reactions to any medication, what occurs to one, may never occur with another peson.  So if your Dr. prescribed it, maybe you should try it and see if it helps you?!
 
Now with all that said cool I've tried Topamax for migraine headaches with auras and seizures.  'It' and I didn't get along, devil but I do have a lot of intolerance to med.'s.  One thing that I noticed, though, it did affect my leg nerves and I was not expecting that - I have sciatica, too!  Perhaps it will be a good drug of choice for you to try?!
 
Let us know how it goes! 
 
Best Wishes and Hugs, Teri tongue
"Because he is he and I am I."......E. V. Lucas

"I Hope You Dance".............LeeAnn Womack
 
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Dollyrose
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Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 10
   Posted 7/2/2005 5:26 PM (GMT -7)   
yeah  Thanks,Teri, for your words of encouragement! I will give it a fair shot and see if there is any improvement.  It just puzzles me that if this drug works so well for epilepsy, what does it do to you if you DON'T have that disorder?  Is it working on your brain in some fashion?  Maybe I am becoming paranoid but it can't be from Topamax because i haven't been taking it that long!!! (that's supposed to be a joke!)

Pegasis
Regular Member


Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 118
   Posted 7/3/2005 8:16 PM (GMT -7)   

Hi Dollyrose, You asked about what it's like to be taking a drug that's supposed to be for epilepsy when you don't have epilepsy..........

Go to the topic "What is there that I haven't tried?" by Nacho. Go to the post on May 3, by tysmyboo. That's Sara, forum moderator. She has a list there that shows medications that were originally prescribed as Anti-depressants, Anti-seizures, Beta blockers, Calcium channel blockers, etc. Lots of drugs for other purposes, that work for migraines in some people. Finding the right one, or the right combination, for each individual can be tricky. It's a good thing our doctors have such an array to choose from!  It IS amazing, isn't it? That drugs developed for one condition have been found to be effective for another condition. And, since there is no seizure activity in your brain, the drug isn't doing anything to prevent it. It's just going about it's other wonderful action-----helping to prevent migraines!

 

Happy wellness!    ~~~~Pegasis yeah


Teri16
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Date Joined Dec 2003
Total Posts : 5230
   Posted 7/3/2005 8:18 PM (GMT -7)   
Dollyrose, I checked re how it works, and they say, they're not sure...but that it can be used for other conditions as well...I know that probably doesn't help much lol but there ya go!! Hugs, Teri :)
"Because he is he and I am I."......E. V. Lucas

"I Hope You Dance".............LeeAnn Womack
 
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tiddlemouse
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Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 7/3/2005 10:26 PM (GMT -7)   

Dollyrose,

My neurologist prescribed Topamax to me - starting at 25mg., to be increased every 2 weeks to a maximum of 100mgs. (for headaches - I was in a car accident about 2 1/2 years ago that has left me in excruiating daily head pain). 

The pills haven't taken the pain away by no means, but I have noticed a difference already.  Take it easy with increasing the doseage so quickly though - it's really tough on the brain! I felt really stoned the first couple days, then after I adjusted to the doseage, I was okay, then each time I had to up the doseage, I felt stoned again.  Just be careful - pace yourself - no one knows yourself better than you do!

And just incase, I don't recall seeing it mentioned here at all - the tingling sensations in the hands, feet and mouth - when I get that, just eat some fruit or drink some fruit juice and it goes away. - not sure why, but it works!

Best Wishes to you Dollyrose! :-)

One question for anyone out there - I know from everything I've read about Topamax, it's suppose to make you really tired out - it makes me feel tired, but I just can't sleep!!  I'm lucky if I can get 3 hours of sleep each night!!  Anyone else have this problem too? (And I don't drink coffee - only drink 1-2 teas in the morning) Any help?

Thanks!

 


Teri16
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Date Joined Dec 2003
Total Posts : 5230
   Posted 7/3/2005 10:36 PM (GMT -7)   
It can also cause nervousness, or agitation. So perhaps, while tired, you may be experiencing these other side effects? Talk to your Dr. about this. It's important to get a good night's sleep!!

Hugs, Teri :)
"Because he is he and I am I."......E. V. Lucas

"I Hope You Dance".............LeeAnn Womack
 
Please allow HealingWell to continue helping others by donating:


Dollyrose
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Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 10
   Posted 7/4/2005 6:11 AM (GMT -7)   
My first week is over and I haven't had any "stoned" feelings yet but I am unGodly tired.And I can sleep well at night except for getting up three or four times to use the b.r. from all the water. Getting up out of bed is one of the hardest things for me to do with this back and sciatic pain. So far, no relief from the pain and no tinglingl sensations as reported by others. Since two courses of epidurals, acupuncture, aquatics, and assorted therapies didn't work I am crossing my fingers on this one. Thanks to everyone for their input. This information has been invaluable and I really enjoy hearing from everyone. I guess Misery really does enjoy company.

tiddlemouse
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Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 7/4/2005 7:52 AM (GMT -7)   

Thanks Teri.  I'll be sure to get into see a dr. this week; can't say I can stand  too many more of these long nights (not with have to work too!)

The advice is all much appreciated!  Thanks Again! :-)

 


Hth's Sweet Girl
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Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 7/5/2005 5:10 AM (GMT -7)   

Ooo!  Ooo!  Me!  Me!  I am right there with all of you that cannot sleep!  I fall asleep at about 10-11:00 p.m. and am WIDE awake at 2-3:00 a.m.  That makes for a VERY sleepy gal the next day.  And, I'm tired anyway as a side effect of the medicine. 

I am hoping upon hope that these side effects will wear off soon and the benefits will out weigh the side effects.  Let's cross our fingers!


tysmyboo
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Date Joined Dec 2004
Total Posts : 921
   Posted 7/5/2005 9:33 AM (GMT -7)   
When taking Topamax, the side effects-for me anyway-wore off after the first few weeks. I did have my doctor ultimately give me Ambien for sleep as I tend to have insomnia when the migraines get their worst stages.
You might want to keep your sleep patterns written down so you can discuss this with your doctor and have specifics ready for him/her. I understand that a lot of times they will prescribe an old anti-depressent,to take before bedtime, while taking Topamax. The older anti-depressants such as Elavil and Amitryptaline tend to make you tired and sleep like a log!!! (I've taken both!)
 
(If I have spelled anything wrong or said anything really stupid...laugh really hard...I've got a nice migraine streak going!)
Sara
Sara-Migraine/Headache Forum Moderator
 
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Hth's Sweet Girl
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Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 7/5/2005 10:37 AM (GMT -7)   

Journaling my sleep patterns is an excellent idea!  I will definately try that!  Although - I was on Doxapin and Amitryptaline before and gained close to 35 pounds so I'm not real partial to taking antidepressants if I don't have to....

Aren't migraines a pain - literally?  ;)


Dollyrose
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Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 10
   Posted 7/5/2005 11:37 AM (GMT -7)   
My deepest sympthies to all you ladies (and men) who suffer from all those migraines day after day. I used to have an occasional one when I was much, much younger but for some unknown reason they just went away, thank God! But to have them day after day would drive one over the proverbial edge, I would think. It seems we all have our cross to bear in one way or another, doesn't it.? My best wishes to all who suffer and I hope that Topamax can bring some relief to you. I am going to stick with it, if I can get through the side effects, and see what happens.

tiddlemouse
New Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 7/5/2005 8:28 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey there Sweet Girl, :-)
 
I'm soooooo glad to hear that I'm not alone on the not sleeping thing!  I was beginning to wonder if it was just me! Especially when everything I've read says how Topamax knocks ya out - which it does make me tired, just doesn't knock me out!!
I will try to get into see the dr. this week - see what he can prescribe for me.  I'll let you know what he says. 
In the meantime, if I come across anything that seems to work, I'll let ya know.
 
Take care and try to get some rest! tongue

Dollyrose
New Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 10
   Posted 7/5/2005 11:28 PM (GMT -7)   
Well here it is 2 AM, the second week of treatment on two pills now and I, too, have suddenly become wide awake and unable to sleep.Although I feel really tired, I can't lay there anymore and watch TV or read.  I figure I would try to play Solitaire online because that usually makes me very tired.  Will be watching to see what you ladies come up with as a solution.  I really don't want to get on the sleeping pill merry go round if at all possible. eyes

Hth's Sweet Girl
New Member


Date Joined Jun 2005
Total Posts : 7
   Posted 7/6/2005 4:31 AM (GMT -7)   

I will admit to you guys that I have been taking them because I have to get some sort of sleep in order to function.  I take Tylenol Nightime one night (1-2 pills) then the next night will take a sleep aid without pain reliever the next night (1-2 pills).  I know I shouldn't, so Monday night I went without just to see what would happen, and sure enough - I was wide awake from 2:00 a.m. on.  I just cannot function that way.  With my work schedule (Getting up at 5:00 a.m. - working from 7:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. getting home at 6:00 p.m. putting kids in bed by 8:00 p.m., starting all over again...) I NEED sleep!  If I don't get in a GOOD 8 hours of sleep I will have terrible headaches - Topamax or no Topamax.  So, what to do? 

It's frustrating.  If I take something (antidepressants) to help with the sleep I will gain weight again, which will make me even MORE depressed!  I can't win here!  AHHHHHH!  Darn it all! confused


Dollyrose
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Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 10
   Posted 7/6/2005 11:22 AM (GMT -7)   

Message to nancyschmancy:

  My daughter suggested that I look up Web.Md.Health regarding Topamax and when I did I found something immediately that will answer your questions about neuropathy, I think.  Click on the site and in the Search Box type Topamax and when you reach the Diabetes

Section, go to #4 --Epilepsy Drug Topamax Targets Diabetes--I think this is what you are looking for.  At least I hope it is!
 
Best of luck!  I have neuropathy in my left leg along with sciatic pain in my right leg and I am hoping right along with you. yeah

tiddlemouse
New Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 7/7/2005 11:32 PM (GMT -7)   
Just a quickie to let you all know I'm thinking about ya - and ya, I'm still awake! I've got a dr. appt. today - will let ya know how I make out there. At this point, I really don't care what he prescribes me, I've gotta get some sleep! I don't have little ones (thank god) but I do have a job and a hubby and 2 grown kids around the house that still need my attention to some degree. Nevertheless, I'll drop a note tomorrow.

Hopefully you're having some sweet dreams tonight - if not, know I'm thinking of ya regardless. :)
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