Forget Topamax, what about Depakote?

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Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 136
   Posted 6/18/2011 11:50 PM (GMT -6)   
After a month and a half of Topamax, I observed no genuine relief of my constant head pressure.  Perhaps a few minutes a few times I thought it could have been helping, but my pressure varies in intensity anyway, and I ascribed those moments to placebo.  The fact of the matter is, nothing really jumped out at me.
Saw the neurologist Friday, said I got up to 75mg of Topamax (had been on that dosage for 16 days straight), no noticeable relief of head pressure at all--she said I should wean off of it.  Then she said I should start taking Depakote instead, and gave me samples of Depakote ER 500mg, to be taken once a day before bed, and a script for the same.  She said I would need to test liver functions every 3-6 months, but didn't bother to write anything down for me, didn't go into any detail.  I asked about side effects and she shrugged her head, as if to say they would be "much less" than Topamax, or at least minimal.  Has anyone tried Depakote for headache and/or migraines?  If so, what did you think of it?  What were the side effects like for you?
If Depakote doesn't work, she said the next option could be Botox in the head and neck.  Don't know what I think about that one, though.
Hope to hear back,

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2011
Total Posts : 64
   Posted 6/19/2011 3:26 AM (GMT -6)   
Hey man, welcome to the board with little answers. Not many people chime in, so don't get your hopes up. I started a thread about the same thing you did and have had a grand total of one person reply to me in the last 3 months. (though she is very helpful and continually answers back!) thanks jewishmother!

Anyway, I got put on valproic acid by my neuro. Depakote and valproic acid are the same; ones just generic. My dosage was 250mg, four pills a day, 2 at a time. I had to cut the dosage in 1/2, though, eventually. I could deal with the some what lathargic feeling I got. But when it started to feel like something was coming up my throat, right after taking the pills, I had to cut the dosage in half. Other than that, it was fine to take. That being said, it didn't really help me. I took myself off totally and asked to try something new. I'm not going to keep typing because all this is in my own thread called "every single day headache (currently on valproic acid) check it out if you want. Unfortunately, though, there's more questions than answers there ):

Post Edited (Gator4life) : 6/19/2011 2:35:07 AM (GMT-6)

Regular Member

Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 136
   Posted 6/19/2011 11:45 PM (GMT -6)   
Dear Gator,
I just skimmed through your thread.  There is a couple similarities in our case.  One, we both have constant headache of some variety.  Two, we both are very low on classic migraine symptoms.  However, my case is all about a sensation of "head pressure"--not just behind the eyes, but around the entire head and neck, inside my head, anywhere in that area.  I also do not often get basic headaches, and I never get typical migraines.  I would not describe my case as chronic head pain, but more as chronic head discomfort.  Nonetheless, it's a major annoyance.
about Depakote, Valproic Acid, etc, I was given samples of Depakote ER 500mg.  I'm supposed to take one per day, but the tablets are very large.  Have you ever seen or taken a Centrum Multivitamin?  They are even bigger than that.  Was that part of the problem you had--the pills were so large, they got stuck somewhere and were coming back into your throat?  Please let me know.
I'm going to taper off Topamax before I take the samples, and if I can tolerate it, then I'll fill the script for the same exact drug.
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