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Off Label Use - Part 2

May 24. 2010

Topamax

6-months ago, the Judiciary Report wrote a series of articles, beginning on November 19, 2009, regarding the "Off Label Use" of the terrible pharmaceutical drug Topamax and its debilitating effects. "Off Label Use" is a term used when drug companies promote their products for uses other than what they were originally intended and approved for by the government. 

Topamax is an epilepsy medication, but doctors, under the instruction of pharmaceutical companies, began prescribing it for other medical conditions, such as migraines, thunderclap headaches, depression and as a diet drug, because they were paid to do so. They greedily marketed it as a cure-all drug to cover a wide range of medical ailments, when it is a dangerous pharmaceutical.

6-months later on Friday, May 21, 2010, Johnson & Johnson, the makers of the drug, Topamax, pled guilty to pushing the pharmaceutical drug Topamax for uses other than what it was approved for by the government, using doctors in pay for play schemes, who then prescribed it to their patients under said inducements. They have agreed to pay over $80 million dollars in government fines. 

I was speaking from experience when I wrote those articles last year, as I had a stress induced brain hemorrhage and was prescribed Topamax in 2009, for the headaches and head pains I began to experience after the incident, due to ongoing acute emotional distress and harassment

I resisted taking the medication, a fact that was noted in my medical records more than once, as based on my significant understanding of pharmaceutical drugs, it did not seem like something someone who had experienced the unprecedented type of brain hemorrhage I did, should be prescribed. 

However, a female doctor, who was a trainee at the teaching hospital, got upset during a follow up visit they ordered and demanded I take the medication. 

Concerned they would discontinue treatment, while I was still very sick from the hemorrhage and angiogram they botched, leaving me with nerve damage in my right leg, I took the Topamax.

Within two days of doing so, I was as sick as a parrot, due to the Topamax. It was worse than the stress induced brain hemorrhage. I developed a condition known as metabolic acidosis, which is the end result of medication creating an environment in the body that promotes acid in the blood, which is horrible. In essence, it is like blood poisoning. 

The first signs of it was a very elevated heart rate, which simulated the feeling of having a heart attack and involuntary hyperventilation, which is the lungs trying to blow off the excess carbon dioxide, thanks to the Topamax.

It reached a crescendo on the day before Thanksgiving last year. I fell asleep and one hour later, was awoken by a terrible pain on my right side that was wrapping around from my back to my ribs and depressing my breathing to the point I had stopped taking in oxygen. In short, I was choking to death in my sleep, with a sharp pain on the right side of my back and ribs, constricting to the point, I could barely move. 

When I was finally able to move and stand up, I started breathing again, but when I slowly walked over to a mirror, I noticed I was shaking like a leaf, a term known as "tremors" which was created by the Topamax.

I asked my mom to call 911, as I was concerned I would lapse into a coma and die and the pain in the ribcage constricting my breathing, was still there. It literally hurt to breathe. The ambulance took me to the hospital that originally prescribed the Topamax, after the paramedics noticed the tremors. 

The hospital did everything they could to limit liability, realizing I was experiencing a very adverse reaction to the Topamax, an epilepsy drug, they had prescribed to me, someone without epilepsy, who was experiencing headaches and head pains (linger effects of the hemorrhage) and nerve pain in my leg (due to the botched angiogram).

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