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Medications and Drugs

Brand Names: D.H.E. 45

Generic Name: dihydroergotamine (injection) (Pronunciation: dye HYE droe er GOT a meen)

What is dihydroergotamine injection (D.H.E. 45)?

Dihydroergotamine is in a group of drugs called ergot alkaloids (ER-got AL-ka-loids). It works by narrowing the blood vessels around the brain and affects blood flow patterns that are associated with certain types of headaches.

Dihydroergotamine injection is used to treat a migraine or cluster headache attack. This medication will only treat a headache that has already begun. It will not prevent headaches or reduce the number of attacks.

Dihydroergotamine injection should not be used to treat common tension headaches or any headache that seems to be different from your usual migraine headaches. Dihydroergotamine is not for daily use.

Dihydroergotamine injection may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What are the possible side effects of dihydroergotamine injection (D.H.E. 45)?

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 dihydroergotamine and call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:

  • fast or slow heart rate, swelling or itching in any part of your body;
  • chest pain spreading to the arm or shoulder, and nausea, sweating, or general ill feeling;
  • sudden numbness or weakness, sudden headache, confusion, or problems with vision, speech, or balance;
  • leg weakness, muscle pain in your arms or legs;
  • numbness, tingling, and a pale or blue-colored appearance in your fingers or toes;
  • stomach cramps, diarrhea that may be bloody;
  • cough with stabbing chest pain and trouble breathing; or
  • dangerously high blood pressure (severe headache, blurred vision, buzzing in your ears, anxiety, confusion, chest pain, shortness of breath).

Less serious side effects may include:

  • headache, dizziness, feeling anxious;
  • diarrhea;
  • sweating, mild skin rash, redness or tingly feeling under your skin.

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.

What is the most important information I should know about dihydroergotamine injection (D.H.E. 45)?

This medication can harm an unborn baby or a nursing baby. Do not use if you are pregnant or breast-feeding.

Using certain medications together with dihydroergotamine can cause even greater decreases in blood flow than dihydroergotamine used alone, which can lead to dangerous side effects. Tell your doctor about all other medications you are using.

Also tell your doctor about all of your medical conditions, especially breathing problems, high blood pressure, ischemic bowel disease, liver or kidney disease, or risk factors for heart disease.

Never use more than your prescribed dose of dihydroergotamine. An overdose can be fatal.



Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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