Use of low-dose topiramate in substance use disorder and bodyweight control


Winston W. Shen, MD, 111 Hsin Long Road, Section 3, Taipei 116, Taiwan. Email:


Abstract  In recent years topiramate has been used for psychiatric patients, mainly for controlling substance use and food intake. A total of 46 patients who received topiramate treatment during the study period were identified from a computer database. Nineteen had received topiramate for at least 1 month. Twelve patients received topiramate for anticraving effects (alcohol, n = 9; heroin/amphetamine, n = 1; meperidine, n = 1; and nicotine, n = 1). On an average dosage of 112.5 mg/day, nine of the 12 patients (excluding three alcoholic patients) achieved complete or partial remission from the substance use disorders. The present results show that six of the nine patients achieved full or partial remission from alcohol use disorder on a dosage of 100 mg/day. Topiramate was also used to control seven patients' bodyweight (mean bodyweight change, 1.53 kg). Four of them achieved bodyweight loss in the 1-month follow up, with an average change of 2.65 kg. Based on the present findings topiramate <100 mg/day may be effective in treating patient with alcohol use disorder, and that topiramate has not shown remarkable benefit of bodyweight loss.