Compare Depakote vs. Topamax

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Depacon
(valproate, valproic acid, or divalproex)

Qudexy Xr
(topiramate)

Prevents seizures and stabilizes mood. Depacon (Valproate, Valproic Acid, Or Divalproex) is good long-term prevention for epilepsy, bipolar disorder, and migraines, but can cause weight gain.Prevents seizures and migraine headaches. Qudexy Xr (Topiramate) is useful for preventing seizures and migraines, and doesn't require blood tests while you're on it.
Reviews & ratings
Filter group. All currently selected
Filter group. All currently selected
4.44Depakote
Reviews for Depakote
46%
of people (All ages) say Depakote is worth it
40%
say it works well
27%
say it's a big hassle
Have you used Depacon (valproate, valproic acid, or divalproex)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Topamax
52%
-6% worse vs. Depakote
50%
-10% worse vs. Depakote
36%
+9% better vs. Depakote
Have you used Qudexy Xr (topiramate)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
DepakoteTopamax
  • Nausea 7%
  • Drowsiness 7%
  • Dizziness 8%
  • Vomiting 9%
  • Accidental injury 6%
  • Muscle weakness 3%
  • Abdominal pain 1%
  • Indigestion 1%
  • Any side effect 4%
  • Rash 3%
More Depakote side effects »
  • Ear, nose, or throat infection 16%
  • Diarrhea 8%
  • Weight decrease 7%
  • Difficulty with concentration/attention 7%
  • Inflammation inside the nose 5%
  • Tingling sensation 3%
  • Infection 3%
  • Infection viral 3%
  • Rash 3%
  • Fatigue 17%
More Topamax side effects »
How it works
DepakoteTopamax
Depacon (Valproate, Valproic Acid, Or Divalproex) is an antiepileptic. Researchers don't know exactly how it works. It seems to increase the amount of GABA, a chemical that calms nerves in the brain.Qudexy Xr (Topiramate) is an antiepileptic. Researchers don't know exactly how it works, but it seems to affect multiple parts of the brain to control seizures and migraines.
Type of medication
DepakoteTopamax
Prescription onlyPrescription only
Available as
DepakoteTopamax
  • Pill
  • Extended release
  • Extended release capsule
  • Sprinkle
  • Liquid
  • Pill
  • Extended release capsule
Used for
DepakoteTopamax
Risk factors for serious side effects
DepakoteTopamax
  • Children under age 2
  • History of metabolic disorders
  • History of depression
  • People also taking Topamax
Detailed Depacon (valproate, valproic acid, or divalproex) risks & warnings »
  • History of depression
  • Children
  • History of metabolic disorders
  • People also taking Depakote
  • Low-carb diet
Detailed Qudexy Xr (topiramate) risks & warnings »
Pregnancy

Research studies with real people found harmful effects on unborn babies, but the benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

Research studies with real people found harmful effects on unborn babies, but the benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

Food
DepakoteTopamax
  • Take with food to avoid upset stomach.
No food related info.
Kidneys and liver
DepakoteTopamax
  • Can cause liver damage, so it's probably not safe if you already have liver problems.
  • Qudexy Xr (Topiramate) may increase your risk for kidney stones. Stay well-hydrated to lower your risk.
  • A few people will get kidney stones.
Weight
DepakoteTopamax
  • May cause hair loss and weight gain.
  • Can cause upset stomach, hair loss, weight gain, sleepiness, and tremor.
  • Can cause sleepiness, speech problems, tingling sensations, and weight loss.
Upsides and benefits
DepakoteTopamax
  • Lowers the frequency of seizures, especially for people with absence, tonic-clonic, and complex partial seizures.
  • One of the first-line options to stabilize mood for people with bipolar disorder.
  • Helpful in preventing frequent migraine headaches.
  • Used on its own or with other antiepileptic medicines to lower the frequency of seizures, especially for people with tonic-clonic or partial seizures, or Lennox-Gestaut syndrome.
  • Helpful in preventing frequent migraine headaches.
  • Doesn't need routine blood tests.
Downsides and risks
DepakoteTopamax
  • Can cause upset stomach, hair loss, weight gain, sleepiness, and tremor.
  • Can cause liver damage, so it's probably not safe if you already have liver problems.
  • Not safe to use if you're pregnant.
  • Requires routine blood tests to see how the medicine is affecting your body.
  • Can cause sleepiness, speech problems, tingling sensations, and weight loss.
  • A few people will get kidney stones.
  • Not safe to use if you're pregnant.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
DepakoteTopamax
  • For the first week, avoid activities that require you to be alert.
  • Don't use if pregnant.
  • Requires routine blood tests.
  • Take with food to avoid upset stomach.
  • May cause hair loss and weight gain.
  • Different versions of Depakote have different dosing. Be careful.
  • Report confusion, persistent abdominal pain, yellowing of eyes/skin, or easy bruising to your doctor.
  • Takes 3 to 4 weeks to feel full effects on mood.
  • For the first week, avoid activities that require you to be alert.
  • Don't use if pregnant.
  • Can cause tingling skin sensations and reduced appetite.
  • Report any confusion, decreased sweating, fever, or changes in behavior or vision.
  • Takes 3 to 4 weeks to feel full effects on mood.
Learn more
More about DepakoteSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Depacon (valproate, valproic acid, or divalproex)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about TopamaxSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Qudexy Xr (topiramate)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it