I was just prescribed this medication for migraines. I'm terrified of weight gain but my dose is only 250mg. I'm trying to decide to take it or not. Opinions please.
I've been on 1500 mg of Divalproex Sodium, both the regular and the ER (extended release) for over 18 years now, and I weigh 93 pounds. It never caused me to gain weight, and I've never had any side effects from it. I may be an anomaly, but I've had some pretty hideous side effects from a lot of other medications, including a paradoxical drug effect with two meds (that's when a drug has the exact opposite effect it's supposed to, like say an antidepressant making you much more depressed, or something that's supposed to keep you from falling asleep from Narcolepsy making you more drowsy). My point is that I think if anyone would have suffered side effects from Divalproex Sodium in 18 years of 1500 mg it would have been me. One thing I will caution you about, the same thing I always say about this drug. Divalproex Sodium is a generic equivalent for Depakote name brand. BUT there is another generic that's often substituted for Depakote called Valproaic Acid and IT IS NOT THE SAME FORMULA AS DIVALPROEX SODIUM!!! They are not the same at all. Valproaic Acid has some nasty, nasty side effects, not the least of which is violent, nonstop vomiting for hours till you get dry heaves and it still won't stop, and horrible nausea and stomach pain. In my case I turned out to be allergic to Valproaic Acid and I almost died in the ambulance on the way to the ER from the reaction. A pharmacist used it instead of Divalproex Sodium since he'd run out and didn't tell me because he figured "hey, they're both generic." So always be sure you're getting the one you can take and don't let them substitute without your knowledge. I think you should be fine if you're starting out low and working up, just keep in close touch with your pdoc and report honestly to him how you're doing on it. Good luck!
- Divalproex Sodium Information for Consumers
- Divalproex Sodium Information for Healthcare Professionals (includes dosage details)
- Side Effects of Divalproex Sodium (detailed)
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