See Topamax Review for more information on Topamax and side effects.
A study published in the journal Neurology, shows Topamax (topiramate) has been linked to an increase risk of birth defects in babies born to patients who took it during pregnancy.
"More research needs to be done to confirm these results, especially since it was a small study," researcher John Craig, MRCP, of the Royal Group of Hospitals in Belfast, Northern Ireland said in a news release.
He added that although the study included only epilepsy patients, the results may be of particular relevance for migraine patients "since [Topamax] is also used for preventing migraines, which is an even more common condition that also occurs frequently in women of childbearing age."
If the study findings are confirmed, they suggest that Topamax may not be an appropriate migraine treatment for women who are considering pregnancy, neurologist Shlomo Shinnar, MD, PhD, of New York's Montefiore Medical Center told WebMD. Shinnar is a spokesman for the American Academy of Neurology.
Information from the Official Topamax Web Site
In review of the information on the official Topamax site, we found a report by Dr. Merle Diamond associate director of the Diamond Headache Clinic of Chicago, from July 19, 2007 regarding Topamax During Pregnancy. She reported that although some prescription and over-the-counter drugs may pose a small degree of risk to the fetus, few pregnant migraine sufferers can go 9 months without treatment for migraine pain, and there are headache pain medications that are proven safer than others.
In this report, the only prescription medications she mentioned that should not be taken during pregnancy because of their known adverse effects, are phenytoin, valproic acid, and lithium carbonate.
Dr. Merle Diamond went on to say pregnant women should be recommended for nonpharmacological treatments for migraines during all trimesters, such as rest, biofeedback, ice/heat, massage, exercise, folate, and avoiding migraine triggers.
Dr. Merle Diamond has indicated that she has served as a speaker and/or consultant, or has conducted research for AstraZeneca, GlaxoSmithKline, Merck, Pfizer, and Ortho-McNeil the makers of Topamax.
Information from TOPAMAX full U.S. Prescribing Information
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