Compare Topamax vs. Cafergot

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

Qudexy Xr
(topiramate)

Cafergot
(ergotamine / caffeine)

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.Treats migraine headaches. Cafergot (ergotamine / caffeine) can treat migraines, but you're more likely to have side effects.
Reviews & ratings
Filter group. All currently selected
Filter group. All currently selected
4.43Topamax
Reviews for Topamax
52%
of people (All ages) say Topamax is worth it
50%
say it works well
36%
say it's a big hassle
Have you used Qudexy Xr (topiramate)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it

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Have you used Cafergot (ergotamine / caffeine)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
TopamaxCafergot
  • 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 »

The Cafergot FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.

More about Cafergot side effects »
How it works
TopamaxCafergot
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.Cafergot (ergotamine / caffeine) is a combination of ergotamine and caffeine. It tightens the blood vessels in your brain to relieve the pain of your headaches.
Type of medication
TopamaxCafergot
Prescription onlyPrescription only
Available as
TopamaxCafergot
  • Pill
  • Extended release capsule
  • Pill
  • Suppository
Used for
TopamaxCafergot
Risk factors for serious side effects
TopamaxCafergot
  • History of depression
  • Children
  • History of metabolic disorders
  • People also taking Depakote
  • Low-carb diet
Detailed Qudexy Xr (topiramate) risks & warnings »
  • Overdosing Cafergot (ergotamine / caffeine)
  • Taking triptans (Imitrex, Axert, Maxalt, Amerge, Frova) for migraines
  • Taking Cafergot (ergotamine / caffeine) regularly for months
Detailed Cafergot (ergotamine / caffeine) 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 or animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. If you’re pregnant, the risks to your unborn baby outweigh the benefits.

Kidneys and liver
TopamaxCafergot
  • Qudexy Xr (Topiramate) may increase your risk for kidney stones. Stay well-hydrated to lower your risk.
  • A few people will get kidney stones.
No kidneys and liver related info.
Weight
TopamaxCafergot
  • Can cause sleepiness, speech problems, tingling sensations, and weight loss.
No weight related info.
Upsides and benefits
TopamaxCafergot
  • 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.
  • Cafergot (ergotamine / caffeine) works better than other medicines if your migraines usually last more than 2 days or if you have more frequent migraines.
Downsides and risks
TopamaxCafergot
  • 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.
  • Cafergot (ergotamine / caffeine) can't stop migraines from happening. They can only treat them.
  • Cafergot (ergotamine / caffeine) can only be used for migraines. It doesn't work for other types of headaches.
  • Smoking or using products that contain nicotine can make Cafergot (ergotamine / caffeine) less effective.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
TopamaxCafergot
  • 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.
  • Take Cafergot (ergotamine / caffeine) as soon as you feel the migraine coming on.
  • You might be more sensitive to cold when you take Cafergot (ergotamine / caffeine) since it slows down the circulation of your blood in your skin, fingers and toes. Dress warmly.
  • If you have to take more than 6 tablets or 2 suppositories a day or 10 tablets or 5 suppositories in a week of Cafergot (ergotamine / caffeine), talk to your doctor.
  • Don't smoke tobacco if you're taking Cafergot (ergotamine / caffeine).
  • Keep the suppository of Cafergot (ergotamine / caffeine) in the fridge.
Learn more
More about TopamaxSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Qudexy Xr (topiramate)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about CafergotSide effectsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Cafergot (ergotamine / caffeine)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it