Topamax for MigrainesMigraine headaches are different from other headaches in many ways. Some of the most common migraine symptoms include:
- Headache pain on one side of the head
- Sensitivity to light or sound
- Throbbing headache pain
- Upset stomach (nausea) and vomiting
- Unusual vision changes.
Some people may have an aura before their migraines occur. An aura can be any unusual sign that a migraine is about to happen, including vision changes, numbness, tingling, or speech changes. The most common type of aura is visual (seeing spots, tunnel vision, or other vision changes). Some people have migraine triggers, which are certain foods, drinks, or situations that seem to lead to a migraine (see Migraine Diet for more information).
Unlike many other migraine medications (which are used to treat a migraine once it starts), Topamax is used to prevent migraine headaches. Migraine prevention is especially useful for people who have frequent migraines, very severe migraines, or migraines that do not respond to other migraine medications.
Topamax is approved for treating epilepsy in children age two and up, either used alone or in combination with other seizure medications. Topamax has not been adequately studied for migraine prevention in children and is not approved for treating migraine headaches in children. Be sure to talk to your child's healthcare provider about the benefits and risks of using Topamax in children.
On occasion, your healthcare provider may recommend Topamax for treating something other than the conditions listed above. This is called an "off-label" use. At this time, off-label uses of Topamax include the treatment of the following conditions:
- Absence seizures
- Atonic seizures
- Bipolar disorder
- Diabetic neuropathy or other types of neuropathic pain (nerve pain)
- Infantile spasms (seizures in very young infants)
- Myoclonic seizures
- Obesity (see Topamax Weight Loss).