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  • Adding lithium to Topmax increased weight loss in those with bipolar disorder by 3.7 lbs

    Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
    Tuesday, September 05, 2006 7:08 am Email this article
    Giving bipolar patients Topamax (topiramate) plus lithium, the help stabalize mood, may help to maximize weight loss a new study suggests. Patients who had been taking Topamax (topiramate), lost an additional 3.7 pounds, on average, after lithium was add. Weight Loss with Lithium plus Topamax

    Lithium increased weight loss by 3 to 9 pounds; average 3.7 pounds

    Adding lithium to Topamax increased weight loss by 3.3 to 8.8 pounds.

    One of the twelve patients did not lose any additional weight, while another gained 1.5 pounds.

    The average weight loss after adding lithium was 3.7 pounds.


    Lithium Dose

    Lithium Dose: 600-1200 mg per day, average was 1009 mg

    The average dose of lithium was 1009 mg per day. The range of dosing used was from 600 to 1200 mg per day.



    Average BMI: 39

    The average body mass index (BMI) of the patients was 39—severely obese.


    Obesity Onset

    Average age of obesity onset: 12-years-old

    The average age when the patients became obese was 12-years-old.



    Average age: 44-years-old

    The average age of the patients was 44-years-old.



    Gender: 11 of 12 were women

    Eleven of the twelve patients—all but one—were women.


    Topamax Treatment Duration

    Had taken Topamax for average of 9 months

    On average, patients had been taking Topamax (topiramate) for about 9 months to help with their weight and their binge eating.



    Average dose of Topamax: 514 mg

    The average dose of Topamax (topiramate) was 514 mg per day, with the range being from 75 to 900 mg per day.


    Topamax for Binge Eating

    Topamax controlled binge eating in two-thirds of patients

    With Topamax (topiramate) alone, two-thirds of the patients—eight of twelve—had their binge eating under control.



    Conclusion: Mood stabilization may be necessary to maximize weight loss in patients with biopolar disorder and binge eating

    “Optimal weight loss treatment in obese patients with comorbid bipolar and [binge eating disorders] may require stabilization of mood,” the study concludes.



    Comments: I’m surprised. Lithium usually associated with weight gain

    I’m surprised by this study.

    Lithium is associated with weight gain.

    The results are nothing fantastic—an additional weight loss of about 4 pounds—but nevertheless, it is interesting.

    It is important to keep an open mind to new ideas.


    Kotwal R, Guerdjikova A, Mcelroy SL, Keck PJ. Lithium augmentation of topiramate for bipolar disorder with comorbid binge eating disorder and obesity. Hum Psychopharmacol. 2006 Aug 29.


    Renu Kotwal
    Department of Psychiatry
    Psychopharmacology Research Program
    University of Cincinnati College of Medicine
    Cincinnati, OH, USA
    .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

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