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sumatriptan (oral/nasal) (cont.)

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before using sumatriptan (Imitrex, Imitrex Nasal)?

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

  • coronary heart disease, angina (chest pain), blood circulation problems, lack of blood supply to the heart;
  • a history of heart disease, heart attack, or stroke, including "mini-stroke";
  • severe or uncontrolled high blood pressure;
  • severe liver disease;
  • ischemic bowel disease; or
  • a headache that seems different from your usual migraine headaches.

Do not use sumatriptan if you have used an MAO inhibitor such as furazolidone (Furoxone), isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), rasagiline (Azilect), selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam, Zelapar), or tranylcypromine (Parnate) in the last 14 days.

To make sure you can safely use sumatriptan, tell your doctor if you have any of these other conditions:

  • liver disease;
  • kidney disease;
  • epilepsy or other seizure disorder;
  • high blood pressure, a heart rhythm disorder; or
  • coronary heart disease (or risk factors such as diabetes, menopause, smoking, being overweight, having 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).

FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether sumatriptan will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medication.

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

Sumatriptan can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Do not breast-feed within 12 hours after using sumatriptan. If you use a breast pump during this time, throw out any milk you collect. Do not feed it to your baby.

This medicine should not be given to anyone under 18 or over 65 years of age.

How should I use sumatriptan (Imitrex, Imitrex Nasal)?

Use exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label. Overuse of migraine headache medicine can actually make your headaches worse.

Use sumatriptan as soon as you notice headache symptoms, or after an attack has already begun.

Your doctor may want to give your first dose of this medicine in a hospital or clinic setting to see if you have any serious side effects.

Take one sumatriptan tablet whole with a full glass of water. Do not split the tablet.

After taking a tablet: If your headache does not completely go away, or goes away and comes back, take a second tablet two (2) hours after the first. Do not take more than 200 mg of sumatriptan oral tablets in 24 hours. If your symptoms have not improved, contact your doctor before taking any more tablets.

Sumatriptan nasal spray comes with patient instructions for safe and effective use. Follow these directions carefully. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions. Blow your nose to clear your nasal passages before using the nasal spray. Try not to sneeze or blow your nose just after using the spray.

After using the nasal spray: If your headache does not completely go away after using the spray, call your doctor before using a second spray of sumatriptan. If your headache goes away and then comes back, you may use a second spray if it has been at least two hours since you used the first spray. Do not use more than 40 mg of sumatriptan nasal spray in 24 hours. If your symptoms do not improve, contact your doctor before using any more sprays.

Contact your doctor if you have more than four headaches in one month (30 days).

Store sumatriptan at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and light.

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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