rizatriptan 5mg, migraine treatment

What is Rizatriptan?

Rizatriptan is a medication prescribed for the acute treatment of the headache phase associated with migraine attacks, whether accompanied by an aura or not. It is categorised within the class of medications known as selective serotonin 5-HT1B/1D receptor agonists. 

Rizatriptan should not be used for preventive purposes. This medication is specifically designed to address the immediate symptoms of migraine attacks and should not be taken on a regular basis for prevention.

What is rizatriptan used to treat?

Rizatriptan is primarily used to relieve the symptoms of acute migraines, including headache pain, nausea, and sensitivity to light and sound. It narrows blood vessels in the brain to alleviate migraine symptoms. 

Who can and cannot take medicines containing rizatriptan?

Rizatriptan is generally safe for adults. However, individuals with certain medical conditions may need to avoid rizatriptan. Inform your healthcare provider about your medical history and current medications. 

Do not use rizatriptan under the following circumstances: 

  • if you have a known allergy to rizatriptan benzoate or any of the other ingredients 

  • if you have moderately severe or severe high blood pressure, or mild high blood pressure that is not effectively controlled by medication 

  • if you have a history of heart problems, including heart attack, chest pain (angina), or other indications of heart disease 

  • if you have severe liver or kidney problems 

  • if you have a history of stroke (cerebrovascular accident CVA) or mini stroke (transient ischemic attack TIA) 

  • if you experience reduced blood flow to your legs and arms due to blocked arteries (peripheral vascular disease) 

  • if you are currently taking monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors, such as moclobemide, phenelzine, tranylcypromine, or pargyline (medications for depression), or linezolid (an antibiotic). This also applies if it has been less than two weeks since you stopped taking MAO inhibitors 

  • if you are using ergotamine-type medicines, including ergotamine or dihydro-ergotamine to manage your migraine or methysergide to prevent a migraine attack 

  • if you are concurrently taking other medicines in the same class as rizatriptan, such as sumatriptan, naratriptan, or zolmitriptan, for the treatment of your migraine 

If you are currently pregnant, breastfeeding, suspect you might be pregnant, or plan to conceive, it is advisable to consult your doctor or pharmacist for guidance before starting this medication. Additionally, it is recommended to refrain from breastfeeding for a period of 24 hours following treatment. 

migraine image, woman holding her head

When should rizatriptan be taken?

Rizatriptan should be taken as soon as migraine symptoms appear. It is not a preventive medication but is effective in treating ongoing migraine attacks. Follow the prescribed dosage and instructions for the best results. 

If you take rizatriptan too often this may result in you getting a chronic headache. In such cases you should contact your doctor as you may have to stop taking rizatriptan. 

Rizatriptan can take longer to work if it is taken after food. Although it is better to take it on an empty stomach, you can still take it if you have eaten. 

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