What is rizatriptan?

Rizatriptan is a headache medicine. It is believed to work by narrowing the blood vessels around the brain. Rizatriptan also reduces substances in the body that can trigger headache pain, nausea, sensitivity to light and sound, and other migraine symptoms.

Rizatriptan is used to treat migraine headaches.

Rizatriptan will only treat a headache that has already begun. It will not prevent headaches or reduce the number of attacks.

Rizatriptan should not be used to treat common tension headaches or any headache that seems to be different from your ususal migraine headaches. Use this medication only if your condition has been confirmed by a doctor as migraine headaches.

Rizatriptan may also be used for other purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Precautions

You should not use this medication if you are allergic to rizatriptan, or if you have:

  • a history of heart disease, angina (chest pain), blood circulation problems, heart attack, or stroke, including "mini-stroke";
  • ischemic bowel disease;
  • severe or uncontrolled high blood pressure; or
  • a headache that is not like other headaches you have had.

Do not take rizatriptan if you have taken a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) such as isocarboxazid (Marplan), tranylcypromine (Parnate), rasagiline (Azilect), selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam), or phenelzine (Nardil) in the past 14 days.

If you have certain conditions, you may need a dose adjustment or special tests to safely take this medication. Before taking rizatriptan, tell your doctor if you have:

  • liver disease;
  • kidney disease (especially if you are on dialysis);
  • heart disease, high blood pressure, a heart rhythm disorder; or
  • coronary artery disease (or risk factors that include diabetes, menopause, smoking, being overweight, having high blood pressure or high cholesterol, having a family history of coronary artery disease, being older than 40 and a man, or being a woman who has had a hysterectomy).

Rizatriptan disintegrating tablets may contain phenylalanine. Talk to your doctor before using this form of rizatriptan if you have phenylketonuria (PKU).

FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether this medication is harmful to an unborn baby. Before taking rizatriptan, tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment.

Your name may need to be listed on a rizatriptan pregnancy registry when you start using this medication.

It is not known whether rizatriptan passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Do not give this medicine to anyone under 18 years old.

Do not take rizatriptan within 24 hours before or after using another migraine headache medicine, including:

  • almotriptan (Axert), eletriptan (Relpax), frovatriptan (Frova), naratriptan (Amerge), sumatriptan (Imitrex, Treximet), or zolmitriptan (Zomig); or
  • ergot medicine such as dihydroergotamine (D.H.E. 45, Migranal), ergotamine (Ergomar, Ergostat, Cafergot, Ercaf, Wigraine), ergonovine (Ergotrate), methylergonovine (Methergine), or methysergide (Sansert).

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Instructions

Seek emergency medical attention if you think you have used too much of this medicine.

Overdose could cause high blood pressure (severe headache, blurred vision, buzzing in your ears, anxiety, confusion, chest pain, shortness of breath, uneven heartbeats, or seizure).

Since rizatriptan is used as needed, it does not have a daily dosing schedule. Call your doctor promptly if your symptoms do not improve after using rizatriptan.

After taking a rizatriptan tablet, you must wait two (2) hours before taking a second tablet. Do not take more than 30 mg of rizatriptan in 24 hours.

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Side Effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Stop using rizatriptan and call your doctor at once if you have any of these serious side effects:

  • chest pain or heavy feeling, pain spreading to the arm or shoulder, nausea, sweating, general ill feeling;
  • sudden numbness or weakness, especially on one side of the body;
  • sudden headache, confusion, problems with vision, speech, or balance;
  • sudden and severe stomach pain and bloody diarrhea;
  • numbness or tingling and a pale or blue-colored appearance in your fingers or toes; or
  • (if you are also taking an antidepressant) - agitation, high fever, sweating, fast or pounding heartbeats, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of balance or coordination, overactive reflexes, hallucinations, fainting.

Less serious side effects may include:

  • dry mouth, mild nausea;
  • feeling of pain or tightness in your jaw, neck, or throat;
  • pressure or heavy feeling in any part of your body;
  • dizziness, drowsiness, weakness; or
  • mild tingly feeling.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

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Interactions

Before taking rizatriptan, tell your doctor if you are using any of the following drugs:

  • cimetidine (Tagamet);
  • propranolol (Inderal, InnoPran); or
  • an antidepressant such as citalopram (Celexa), duloxetine (Cymbalta), escitalopram (Lexapro), fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem), fluvoxamine (Luvox), paroxetine (Paxil), sertraline (Zoloft), or venlafaxine (Effexor).

This list is not complete and there may be other drugs that can interact with rizatriptan. Tell your doctor about all the prescription and over-the-counter medications you use. This includes vitamins, minerals, herbal products, and drugs prescribed by other doctors. Do not start using a new medication without telling your doctor.

Other Names

Maxalt, Maxalt-MLT, and rizatriptan

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Disclaimer

Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2004 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version 2.05. Revision date 8/23/04

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