in which I finally see that this has all been a bit of a disappointment


I was doing some back- end maintenance this week when I realized that I have been seriously disappointing some folks in a pretty major way: apparently, a LOT of people are coming here wanting to know if you can take gabapentin (Neurontin) with topiramate (Topamax). This isn’t some weird, outlier search, either- many, many different people have searched those terms and wound up on the blog. Okay, then.

I don’t check my search terms regularly- I know it’s good practice, but I don’t want it to throw my actual choices in subject matter, that seems really false. Anyway, let’s just get this out of the way, because clearly Google has this space pegged as a Place You Come For This Information.

Disclaimer, obviously: I am not a doctor nor do I play one on the internet, your body and its condition are unique to you, please speak with your doctor before making any changes to your health plan.

With all that established, here is the quality anecdata you came for! In the past, I have safely taken Neurontin and Topamax (as well as their generic equivalents) together for over a year without any significant ill affects. My neurologist/ MS specialist prescribed Topamax as a prophylaxis against chronic migraine, and the Neurontin was for neuropathic pain associated with MS (since discontinued— but not due to the Topamax combo). I’ve been told by other patients that Lyrica is somewhat more effective against neuropathic pain, but it also has some rather serious black box warnings (as does Topamax, actually); we are doing some pretty deep mucking about in the CNS with any medication that can be used as/ was originally intended to be an anti- epileptic, so if you start to have any intrusive, self- harming, suicidal, or otherwise disturbing thoughts after beginning a medication or a especially a combination of meds like this, talk to your doctor right away! It’s almost certainly the meds, and will go away once you get off of them. (Hooray for the cure, right?) THERE IS NO SHAME is ever asking for help. Talk to someone. The fix is fast and there are other options out there for pain relief.

Disclaimer #2, for clarification: Neurontin & Topamax were fine for me; I went off the Neurontin because I didn’t feel the benefits outweighed the downsides in my case. Pros: No tingling & burning in my hands and feet, much less of that deep “in my bones” pain in my low legs. Cons: It slowed me down, added fatigue, I felt a little less “bright”, less capable of catching ideas as they came. I already take a stimulant to get through some high- drag days, but I was taking more to compensate for the Neurontin, and I don’t want to take meds to fix side effects from other meds. That’s just… well, yeah. Neurontin works well for some folks and not so well for others. I’m neutral on it, but I wouldn’t discourage someone from trying it— definitely give this a whirl before going on Lyrica, if you have the option.

Writing this out, I’m realizing I haven’t done a meds/ supplements rundown & review in a LONG time. I’ve been writing more about making things and less about bodies. I’ll fix that next week: I changed a LOT of my medical plan in 2014, it’s all had time to settle in, and I have thoughts!

A few of the other ways in which I am disappointing visitors to this blog, in case you were wondering:

  • “good things that happen on mondays” (I mean maybe if you’re lucky but I don’t specialize in that?)
  • “salish wool dog” (what? also, wait, is this a thing?)
  • “shmol lif” (it looks like autocorrect works better on Google than on my iPhone)
  • “fuckms” (that’s in theme at least)
  • “armless medical college” (no why did this lead you to me dear glob)
  • “loving kindness meditation kitten” (CLEARLY MY FAVORITE and obviously my secret persona)

Then there are the people who are still finding this website by searching “dog penis”, too, almost six years later, which— well, I brought that on myself.

How did you find this blog? PLEASE tell me it wasn’t through searching “armless medical college”. I’ve clearly misunderstood tagging completely if that’s the case. And hey, seeing as I’ve openly confessed to being a lazy slag who doesn’t check her referring search terms that often, if you had your druthers, what would you see more of here? OTHER THAN HUGO. EVERYBODY WANTS MORE HUGO. He’s a filthy, shameless camera hog. That’s too easy. I’m not changing anything major (okay, I’m eyeballing some layout tweaks, but no overhaul), but soliciting general ideas/ opinions, that’s always cool.


  One thought on “in which I finally see that this has all been a bit of a disappointment

  1. CJ
    February 11, 2016 at 2:58 pm

    I am laughing so hard at weird search terms. Yes more HUGO but obviously. I came here because you made yarn so beautiful it inspired me to (briefly) have my own yarn dying company. Then we both have powerful crappy chronic diseases in common so I like your perspective on that too. Mostly though I just like your eye for the world. It’s a nice view and helps me see things differently. ❤ Keep on being you and I'll keep on searching for armless medical colleges somewhere ELSE since you are no help. 😉

  2. February 11, 2016 at 3:01 pm

    I think it was Ravelry that brought me here. And homemade stuff is always a good topic for me!

  3. Jo M
    February 11, 2016 at 3:07 pm

    I found you through your yarn! As a medical person I find your MS “journey ” fascinating & interesting from a scientific view. You are very open & honest which I appreciate. I don’t know if I could do that! Talk about dog parts & anything else! Thanks!

  4. February 11, 2016 at 3:34 pm

    I found your blog just after you announced CY was shutting down because of health issues. Losing CY aside I was excited to have found another chronic “sister”. I don’t have MS, but three other AI diseases instead. It’s difficult to be “out” about that for me, but you are bravely and gracefully so.

  5. tw
    February 11, 2016 at 4:32 pm

    I was innocently searching for a loving, armless wool dog penis, and there you were!

  6. Rebecca Carmichael-Stromgren
    February 11, 2016 at 8:16 pm

    You. You brought me here.

  7. Tan
    February 11, 2016 at 10:30 pm

    I tried Gabapentin and Topamax for migraine control. I had a reduction in migraine frequency, but I had to discontinue the meds because I suddenly couldn’t play the organ. It might have been an eye-hand coordination thing, or possibly it affected my sight reading. I had no trouble with my other classes, so it wasn’t cognitive actoss the board.

  8. Nancy Sieck
    February 12, 2016 at 2:57 am

    Sarah – I suppose folks could be disappointed in your blog posts, but I’m not. I enjoy reading about how you are coping with life and the creative process. MS is no joke, and as you have repeatedly reminded us… every body is different. What works for one in a certain situation may not work for that person at a different time or in a different set of circumstances. There is no way any of us (your readers) should be disappointed in your blog! Some of the tagging may be “unique” and even amusing. You do have your own voice and I enjoy the one-sided conversations we have – you talk, I listen. Sometimes I’m a bit left behind because I have nothing to relate your writing to. But that certainly isn’t your fault, you should never be disappointed if I (or anyone else) can’t keep up, and we should never be disappointed if we can’t understand. Everyone has their own areas of expertise. You are very much smarter and much more sensitive and articulate than most of your readers. Thanks for the post on valuing our own ability to create, and not thinking we are unworthy of showing the world what we do. How I got here: I attended Sock Summit II and drooled all over the Market, took classes that were wwwway over my creative head, met some wonderful artists, and generally enjoyed the group of knitters. I began following some blogs, and followed your division of the company and bought some wonderful yarn from you online. I loved the wordplay and the bases… not to mention your color sense! I’m a retired librarian, and don’t have a huge discretionary income, so my contribution to your financial security is small. I do look forward to reading the blog, and understand that sometimes life gets in the way of posting. Warning; cheesy comment alert… I like reading the posts that some readers may feel are off track. I like your confidence in writing whatever occurs to you, it makes me feel like I’m having a conversation with a friend. Thank you, Sarah.

    Nan Sieck – librarynan@gmail

    On Thursday, February 11, 2016, a smaller life wrote:

    > Sarah posted: ” I was doing some back- end maintenance this week when I > realized that I have been seriously disappointing some folks in a pretty > major way: apparently, a LOT of people are coming here wanting to know if > you can take gabapentin (Neurontin) with top” >

  9. February 12, 2016 at 6:34 pm

    It’s okay. I’ve had views from someone searching for “crochet tampons.” *groan* It’s funny seeing what brings people to the sites, though!

  10. Lisa
    February 16, 2016 at 7:23 pm

    Love for you, that’s what brought me here!

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