Brain fog

Just curious if anyone gets just the brain fog without any other symptoms? My worst symptoms are the imbalance/ vertigo, chronic HAs and brain fog. Sometimes they happen all together but there are days when I can just have one symptom independent of the others… For instance , the last three days i have had the med head feeling…but the dizziness and HAs aren’t noticeable. My MD wants me to start Topamax since I’ve failed the Nort 6 weeks trial. I’m a bit nervous because I know about the cognitive SEs from Topa. Don’t want the fog to get any worse…but I guess i wont know til I try.

You are right…you have to give it a whirl…did you get no improvement with Nori?
Tons of people take Topa with no problems. Those people are not on the internet searching out answers…their answer is in them living their lives. People on these boards are usually the ones that struggle…but I believe we are the minority.
Here’s hoping that this works for you!
Start low…go slow!!

Jenn, brain fog is definitely one of my migraine symptoms. If I am exposed to my migraine triggers I usually progress from light tingling in my head to brain fog to the rocking sensation. sometimes I get all 3 at once, sometimes they are separate depending on which stage of the migraine I’m in. At the beginning of a migraine I definintely get the brain fog by itself–I have found that it is a key indicator that I’m inducing (or may have already induced) a migraine.

I just started taking Topamax a month ago. I was scared of it too, as the list of side effects is daunting. Everyone is different, but I have found that any brain fog I get from the Topamax is far less than what I was experiencing from the migraines. The main side effects I get from the Topamax are a tingling in my hands from time to time, especially when I do something where I’m manipulating something with my fingers (like, washing my scalp in the shower). It’s a bit disconcerting, but seems harmless enough. Also, some carbonated beverages taste a bit funny, but cutting soda out of my diet has been good for me anyway. :slight_smile:

So far the Topamax is working quite well for me. It has stopped the rocking sensations completely, which is a big relief for me. It hasn’t completely stopped my migraines, but they say you need 2 to 3 months to really let it work and I’m only coming up on 1 month here and just got to 100mg yesterday.

One thing if you decide to try it–be prepared that initially it is going to be unpleasant. The first few days when you start out, and then again when you go up in dosage, are a bit rough. But things calm down reasonably quickly (usually by day 5 or 6 ) so you just have to ride out a few bad days. You might want to start it on a weekend or other day where you don’t need to be your best. I was a bit worried those first 2 days because they were so bad, but it has really worked well for me.

Thanks so much for the advice. I started the Verapamil first and it really helped the severity of my HAs but didn’t help the dizziness ( I get the rocking sensation too, or if I move my head to fast it feels like I’m still in motion). So I was advised to add the Nort. It made me feel so much worse…HAs came back, dizziness worsened and the Brian fog returned. On top of it I was exhausted. I hung in there for 6 weeks and stopped it a week ago. Next drug I have in the line up is Topamax. I was told to start with 25 mg, but I’m considering starting at 12.5 mg. I appreciate the advice about it possibly making the dizziness worse at first.
Jamie, what dose did you start with?

Jenn, the rule with Topamax is start low and go slow… I started at 12.5 and felt fine on that. Waited a week and moved up to 25 and was stuck there for 3 weeks before I gave it up. Too many SEs, including tons worse brain fog than I’d had without being on it. That said, everyone’s different, and some folks do really well on it. It’s worth a shot, at least…

I started out at 25mg. The first 2 days I was on it, it made me feel BAD, as if I had triggered a motherload migraine (I don’t get the pain, just the brain fog and rocking sensation). I hadn’t felt that bad since before I had learned what my triggers were so that I knew how to avoid getting that sick. But some people on here told me that was what they experienced too so I rode it out and it started getting better by day 3 or 4. By day 5 or 6 I was back to normal. My doc wanted to be really aggressive and bump me up 25mg every 5th day, but I waited until I felt like I was normal again, so I did it on the 7th day.

I actually stayed at 75mg for two weeks because it was already working so well that I thought that I might not need to go to 100mg, but I realized that even though I was doing good I might be even better at 100 so I thought I would try it out. I just went up to 100 yesterday morning, so I’m paying for it at the moment. It isn’t nearly as bad as the initial payment or even the change from 25-50 or 50-75 was, but I’m still looking forward to the end of this week when I’ll hopefully be back to normal again!

I can always come back down if the side effects show up too much at 100mg.

Personally, I’m fine with doing it in 25mg increments, but I’m also pretty medicine tolerant and my doc is prety aggressive. I’m impatient, so I’d rather pay for a few days to get to the effective dose quicker. Plus, it seems to me that the pain here is in changing your dosage, so if you go by 12.5 increments you have to change more often vs. just biting the bullet and getting it done with the 25mg increment. But maybe because you are changing by less it won’t cause as many issues. Whatever gives you the confidence to try it out is worth it, because I believe the drug can help a lot of people with our issue.

I increased my dose to 100mg last wed. For the people who have been on it a long time. Does the brain fog ever go away? I hate that sysmtom most of all and at 100 mg of topamax I still have it.