TOPIRAMATE (Page 2 of 12)

2.6 Administration Instructions

Topiramate extended-release capsules may be swallowed whole or may be administered by carefully opening the capsule and sprinkling the entire contents on a small amount (teaspoon) of soft food. This drug/food mixture should be swallowed immediately and not chewed or crushed. It should not be stored for further use. Topiramate extended-release capsules can be taken without regard to meals [see Clinical Pharmacology (12.3)].


Topiramate Extended-Release Capsules are available in the following strengths and colors:

25 mg: flesh colored cap printed with “G” in black ink and light grey body printed with “367” in black ink.
50 mg: light orange cap printed with “G” in black ink and light grey body printed with “368” in black ink.
100 mg: reddish orange cap printed with “G” in black ink and light grey body printed with “369” in black ink.
150 mg: grey cap printed with “G” in black ink and light grey body printed with “370” in black ink.
200 mg: brown cap printed with “G” in black ink and light grey body printed with “371” in black ink.




5.1 Acute Myopia and Secondary Angle Closure Glaucoma Syndrome

A syndrome consisting of acute myopia associated with secondary angle closure glaucoma has been reported in patients receiving topiramate. Symptoms include acute onset of decreased visual acuity and/or ocular pain. Ophthalmologic findings can include some or all of the following: myopia, mydriasis, anterior chamber shallowing, ocular hyperemia (redness), choroidal detachments, retinal pigment epithelial detachments, macular striae, and increased intraocular pressure. This syndrome may be associated with supraciliary effusion resulting in anterior displacement of the lens and iris, with secondary angle closure glaucoma. Symptoms typically occur within 1 month of initiating topiramate therapy. In contrast to primary narrow angle glaucoma, which is rare under 40 years of age, secondary angle closure glaucoma associated with topiramate has been reported in pediatric patients as well as adults. The primary treatment to reverse symptoms is discontinuation of topiramate extended-release capsules as rapidly as possible, according to the judgment of the treating physician. Other measures, in conjunction with discontinuation of, topiramate extended-release capsules may be helpful.

Elevated intraocular pressure of any etiology, if left untreated, can lead to serious sequelae including permanent vision loss.

5.2 Visual Field Defects

Visual field defects (independent of elevated intraocular pressure) have been reported in patients receiving topiramate independent of elevated intraocular pressure. In clinical trials, most of these events were reversible after topiramate discontinuation. If visual problems occur at any time during treatment with topiramate, consideration should be given to discontinuing the drug.

5.3 Oligohydrosis and Hyperthermia

Oligohydrosis (decreased sweating), resulting in hospitalization in some cases, has been reported in association with topiramate use. Decreased sweating and an elevation in body temperature above normal characterized these cases. Some of the cases were reported after exposure to elevated environmental temperatures.

The majority of the reports have been in pediatric patients. Patients, especially pediatric patients, treated with topiramate extended-release capsules should be monitored closely for evidence of decreased sweating and increased body temperature, especially in hot weather. Caution should be used when topiramate extended-release capsules are prescribed with other drugs that predispose patients to heat-related disorders; these drugs include, but are not limited to, other carbonic anhydrase inhibitors and drugs with anticholinergic activity.

5.4 Metabolic Acidosis

Topiramate extended-release capsules can cause hyperchloremic, non-anion gap, metabolic acidosis (i.e., decreased serum bicarbonate below the normal reference range in the absence of chronic respiratory alkalosis). This metabolic acidosis is caused by renal bicarbonate loss due to carbonic anhydrase inhibition by topiramate extended-release capsules. Topiramate extended-release capsules-induced metabolic acidosis can occur at any time during treatment. Bicarbonate decrements are usually mild to moderate (average decrease of 4 mEq/L at daily doses of 400 mg in adults and at approximately 6 mg/kg/day in pediatric patients); rarely, patients can experience severe decrements to values below 10 mEq/L. Conditions or therapies that predispose patients to acidosis (such as renal disease, severe respiratory disorders, status epilepticus, diarrhea, ketogenic diet or specific drugs) may be additive to the bicarbonate lowering effects of topiramate.

Metabolic acidosis was commonly observed in adult and pediatric patients treated with immediate-release topiramate in clinical trials. The incidence of decreased serum bicarbonate in pediatric trials, for adjunctive treatment of Lennox-Gastaut syndrome or refractory partial-onset seizures was as high as 67% for immediate-release topiramate (at approximately 6 mg/kg/day), and 10% for placebo. The incidence of a markedly abnormally low serum bicarbonate (i.e., absolute value < 17 mEq/L and >5 mEq/L decrease from pretreatment) in these trials was up to 11%, compared to ≤ 2% for placebo.

Manifestations of acute or chronic metabolic acidosis may include hyperventilation, nonspecific symptoms such as fatigue and anorexia, or more severe sequelae including cardiac arrhythmias or stupor. Chronic, untreated metabolic acidosis may increase the risk for nephrolithiasis or nephrocalcinosis and may also result in osteomalacia (referred to as rickets in pediatric patients) and/or osteoporosis with an increased risk for fractures [see Warnings and Precautions (5.11)]. Chronic metabolic acidosis in pediatric patients may also reduce growth rates, which may decrease the maximal height achieved. The effect of topiramate on growth and bone-related sequelae has not been systematically investigated in long-term, placebo-controlled trials. Long-term, open-label treatment of pediatric patients 1 to 24 months old, with intractable partial epilepsy, for up to 1 year, showed reductions from baseline in length, weight, and head circumference compared to age and sex-matched normative data, although these patients with epilepsy are likely to have different growth rates than normal 1 to 24-month-old patients. Reductions in length and weight were correlated to the degree of acidosis [see Use in Specific Populations (8.4)]. Topiramate treatment that causes metabolic acidosis during pregnancy can possibly produce adverse effects on the fetus and might also cause metabolic acidosis in the neonate from possible transfer of topiramate to the fetus [see Warnings and Precautions (5.7), Use in Specific Populations (8.1)].

Measurement of Serum Bicarbonate in Epilepsy and Migraine Patients

Measurement of baseline and periodic serum bicarbonate during topiramate treatment is recommended. If metabolic acidosis develops and persists, consideration should be given to reducing the dose or discontinuing topiramate (using dose tapering). If the decision is made to continue patients on topiramate in the face of persistent acidosis, alkali treatment should be considered.

5.5 Suicidal Behavior and Ideation

Antiepileptic drugs (AEDs), including topiramate extended-release capsule increase the risk of suicidal thoughts or behavior in patients taking these drugs for any indication. Patients treated with any AED for any indication should be monitored for the emergence or worsening of depression, suicidal thoughts or behavior, and/or any unusual changes in mood or behavior.

Pooled analyses of 199 placebo-controlled clinical trials (mono- and adjunctive therapy) of 11 different AEDs showed that patients randomized to one of the AEDs had approximately twice the risk (adjusted Relative Risk 1.8, 95% CI:1.2, 2.7) of suicidal thinking or behavior compared to patients randomized to placebo. In these trials, which had a median treatment duration of 12 weeks, the estimated incidence rate of suicidal behavior or ideation among 27,863 AED-treated patients was 0.43%, compared to 0.24% among 16,029 placebo-treated patients, representing an increase of approximately one case of suicidal thinking or behavior for every 530 patients treated. There were four suicides in drug-treated patients in the trials and none in placebo-treated patients, but the number is too small to allow any conclusion about drug effect on suicide.

The increased risk of suicidal thoughts or behavior with AEDs was observed as early as one week after starting drug treatment with AEDs and persisted for the duration of treatment assessed. Because most trials included in the analysis did not extend beyond 24 weeks, the risk of suicidal thoughts or behavior beyond 24 weeks could not be assessed.

The risk of suicidal thoughts or behavior was generally consistent among drugs in the data analyzed. The finding of increased risk with AEDs of varying mechanisms of action and across a range of indications suggests that the risk applies to all AEDs used for any indication. The risk did not vary substantially by age (5 to 100 years) in the clinical trials analyzed.

Table 4 shows absolute and relative risk by indication for all evaluated AEDs.

Table 4: Risk by Indication for Antiepileptic Drugs in the Pooled Analysis


Placebo Patients with Events per 1,000 Patients

Drug Patients with Events per 1,000 Patients

Relative Risk: Incidence of Events in Drug Patients/ Incidence in Placebo Patients

Risk Difference: Additional Drug Patients with Events per 1,000 Patients





















The relative risk for suicidal thoughts or behavior was higher in clinical trials for epilepsy than in clinical trials for psychiatric or other conditions, but the absolute risk differences were similar for the epilepsy and psychiatric indications.

Anyone considering prescribing topiramate extended-release capsules or any other AED must balance the risk of suicidal thoughts or behavior with the risk of untreated illness. Epilepsy and many other illnesses for which AEDs are prescribed are themselves associated with morbidity and mortality and an increased risk of suicidal thoughts and behavior. Should suicidal thoughts and behavior emerge during treatment, the prescriber needs to consider whether the emergence of these symptoms in any given patient may be related to the illness being treated.

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