Topiramate in the treatment of cocaine use disorder

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The literature on topiramate use in cocaine-dependent patients was reviewed.


Six randomized, double-blind, controlled clinical trials evaluating the use of topiramate in patients who were cocaine dependent were analyzed. The results from the studies indicated that topiramate, when used in combination with cognitive behavioral therapy, may be effective in reducing short-term cocaine use and should be considered as a possible treatment option. Other trials suggested that topiramate was not effective in patients with a dual diagnosis of opioid and cocaine dependence. Two trials suggested that short-term abstinence assisted by pharmacotherapy is a predictor of longer-term (6 months and 1 year, respectively) abstinence. Cocaine use is dependent on multiple factors; therefore, a reduction in use or craving is not definitively associated with abstinence. However, decreased use reduces potential patient harm and the amount of money spent on illicit cocaine. The findings of this literature review should be used to encourage the completion of more trials that are appropriately designed. Topiramate was shown to be effective for increasing cocaine abstinence, the proportion of cocaine nonuse days, and the proportion of patients to attain 3 consecutive weeks of cocaine abstinence and decreasing the abuse liability of cocaine. Conflicting results in clinical trials do not provide a definitive answer regarding topiramate's efficacy in managing cocaine dependence.


Available research neither validates nor invalidates the hypothesis that topiramate is efficacious in attaining abstinence in cocaine-dependent patients.

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