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Epitomax, a diverted antiepileptic drug

boite-epitomaxEPITOMAX is not the only drug to have been diverted from its original indication.

We’ve all taken drugs in the hope that their action would be devoid of undesirable effects, but some clever people, both within and outside the medical profession, use precisely these undesirable effects of a drug to remedy a problem not listed in the product’s indications.

We explain explain all about Epitomax

This drug, whose prescription is strictly regulated by the medical profession, is indicated in very specific cases, particularly for people suffering from neurological pathologies such as epilepsy and migraine.

The laboratory that manufactures Epitomax makes no mention of its possible use as a weight-loss product.

In fact, a glance at the warnings issued by France’s highest health authorities against the use of Epitomax as a weight-loss product should make you think long and hard before deciding to use it for this purpose.
afssaps-communique-epitomaxAFSSAPS (Agence Française de Sécurité Sanitaire des Produits de Santé) warns patients against the misuse of Epitomax and its Topiramate-based generics.

It seems that this anti-epileptic and anti-migraine drug is being prescribed to patients with the aim of losing weight, even though this indication has never been evaluated or validated, and use for this purpose may expose patients to real risks, which is why AFSSAPS is asking doctors and pharmacists to respect the indications for Epitomax.

(Source : ANSM Santé France. Press release dated 26/08/2011).

In the list of adverse effects that Epitomax may cause in patients, weight loss is listed as one of the most frequent and recurrent.

Understandably, it is this effect, originally considered undesirable, that has seduced many to adopt Epitomax as an appetite suppressant for weight loss.

The mode of action of Epitomax

Epitomax consists of a substance called Topiramate which acts in the brain by regulating nerve impulses between neurons, preventing them from becoming overloaded and thus avoiding epileptic or migraine seizures.

Topiramate is an analogue of the neurotransmitter GABA orgamma aminobutyric acid : and increases its activity.

The GABA has an inhibitory effect on the brain, preventing prolonged excitation of neurons.

These inhibitory effects serve to balance the excitatory effects of glutamate, known for its role as a neuron exciter.

In less scientific language, Epitomax regulates neurotransmitters in such a way as to prevent epileptic seizures.

On the other hand, its action on migraine attacks is real, but its mechanism of action remains poorly understood.

In all the years of using Epitomax, it has become apparent that one of the side effects it triggers in people who use it is a noticeable weight loss, and in some extreme cases anorexia (!).

Epitomax’s side effects are not limited to weight loss: other side effects are also quite frequent, such as mood disorders, confusion, dizziness, tingling of the extremities, insomnia, tremor, fatigue, irritability…

Is Epitomax dangerous?

Not if used in the right context!

To reassure Epitomax users who take it to calm migraine attacks or epileptic seizures, these side effects are not systematic, and of course do not all occur at the same time in the same person. And it’s precisely to limit these effects that medical follow-up and supervision are necessary.

In addition to these effects, Epitomax has negative interactions with several other drugs, notably the contraceptive pill, whose efficacy it diminishes.

People who have been prescribed Epitomax, and who are of course under the care of their doctor, need not worry about this interaction. Their doctor will take into account their tolerance and medical history before prescribing Epitomax.

The same cannot be said for those who persist in taking it outside the legal and controlled medical framework.

Self-medication, especially with drugs that act on the brain, is dangerous and can cause critical health complications.

It’s not our intention to cast an accusing eye on desperate overweight people who may have used up all or most of the means at their disposal to lose weight, and who find in this kind of product a last resort and a last glimmer of hope. On the contrary, our aim is to make our readers aware of the dangers of using medicinal products for purposes other than those for which they were originally indicated, because serious health problems can arise from the deliberate misuse of a drug… and once this happens, treatment becomes more complicated.

As the impact on health becomes more critical, it will no longer be a question of losing extra kilos, but of remedying a much more threatening ailment.

Most of the products that act as appetite suppressants in the brain cause an absence of pleasure in contact with food, or even a feeling of disgust.

And frankly, to deprive oneself of one of the most elementary pleasures would be a torment to body and mind.

Our opinion on Epitomax

It would be a shame to trade your pounds for depression!

So what can you do to get rid of those extra pounds that weigh down your morale?

There’s bound to be a suitable solution that will enable everyone to lose weight without endangering their own health. The key to successful weight loss is to listen to your body, try to understand why it has accumulated these kilos and how long it took to do so, and then determine the solution best suited to your needs.

There’s no shortage of safe, healthy solutions, so why risk your health: make sure you do your homework before choosing your weight-loss pill.

Leave a Comment


  • Patricia

    I have been suffering from Arnold’s neuralgia for many years.

    My neurologist tried several treatments with no effect, except for EPITOMAX, and now I’m finally alive again.

    No more pain.

    However, after 2 months, I started to lose my taste for food, I sank without knowing why. No more pain, a beautiful life, I started to lose weight, already not fat, 1m80 for 65 kg, I sank into a strong depression, I lost 15kgs, body mass index anorexia.

    The doctors didn’t understand, and I spent months in hell, getting so skinny it was scary.

    Result: EPITOMAX…

    but I couldn’t live without it
    So I consulted a psychologist if I put myself on antidepressants and for the past 1 year I’ve put the weight back on. And I can continue my treatment, we’re now going to stop taking the antidepressants because the effect of EPITOMAX is diminishing, then for the disgust with food.

    So above all, NEVER take this drug as it has many side effects if you have no other way of treating yourself.

    • Cédric Pastori

      Patricia, Hello.

      Thank you for visiting the site and for your contribution. I hope you find a solution to your health and weight problems. By the way, deciding to stop taking a medication is something you should do with the help of your doctor! Some drugs can cure illnesses, but with side-effects that cause other worries, of course. But you’ll just have to hang in there and work hard with your doctor.

      All the best.

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