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Rizatriptan (By mouth)

Rizatriptan (rye-za-TRIP-tan)

Treats migraine headaches. This medicine is triptan. It does not prevent migraines.

Brand Name(s):

Maxalt, Maxalt MLT, Maxalt-MLT

There may be other brand names for this medicine.

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used:

Do not use this medicine if you have had an allergic reaction to rizatriptan or if you have a history of heart attack, stroke, or transient ischemic attack (TIA). Do not use this medicine if you have uncontrolled high blood pressure, angina (chest pain), ischemic bowel disease, peripheral vascular disease, or similar heart or blood vessel disease. You should not use this medicine to prevent migraine attacks or for hemiplegic or basilar migraines. Do not use this medicine if you have taken other migraine headache medicine in the past 24 hours, such as another triptan or an ergot medicine. Do not take rizatriptan within 2 weeks after taking an MAO inhibitor (such as Eldepryl®, Marplan®, Nardil®, or Parnate®).

How to Use This Medicine:

Tablet, Dissolving Tablet

  • Take your medicine as directed.
  • Take 1 dose of this medicine when needed. If your headache comes back and you need a second dose of the medicine, wait at least 2 hours after you took the first dose. If the medicine does not relieve your headache at all, call your doctor right away.
  • Do not use more than 30 milligrams in any 24-hour period. Do not use this medicine for more than 4 headaches in any 30-day period, unless your doctor tells you to.
  • This medicine should be used to treat only migraine headaches that have already started. Do not use this medicine to prevent migraine headaches, and do not use it to treat any other type of headache. If you have a severe headache and do not know the cause, call your doctor.
  • Swallow the tablet whole with a glass of water. Do not crush, break, or chew it.
  • Make sure your hands are dry before you handle the disintegrating tablet. Peel back the foil from the blister pack, then remove the tablet. Do not push the tablet through the foil. Place the tablet in your mouth. After it has melted, swallow or take a drink of water.
  • Read and follow the patient instructions that come with this medicine. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine:

  • Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.
  • Ask your pharmacist, doctor, or health caregiver about the best way to dispose of any outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children. Never share your medicine with anyone.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid:

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using propranolol (Inderal®, Innopran® XL).
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are also using medicine for depression. Some of these medicines are amitriptyline, citalopram, duloxetine, escitalopram, fluoxetine, fluvoxamine, olanzapine, paroxetine, trazodone, Celexa®, Cymbalta®, Effexor®, Elavil®, Lexapro®, Luvox®, Paxil®, Prozac®, Sarafem®, Serzone®, Symbyax®, or Zoloft®.

Warnings While Using This Medicine:

  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, or if you have kidney disease or liver disease.
  • This medicine can cause heart problems, including heart attack. This is more likely to happen if you already have heart disease. Tell your doctor if you have any risk factors for heart disease, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, smoking, diabetes, or a family history of heart disease. Men over 40 years old and women who are past menopause are also more likely to have heart disease.
  • Get emergency help right away if you have any symptoms of a heart attack or stroke. Some possible symptoms are chest pain or discomfort, uneven heartbeat, pain that spreads to you arm or jaw, unusual sweating, feeling faint, trouble breathing, slurred speech, or weakness on one side of your body.
  • This medicine should be used only for classic or common migraine headaches. It will not work for any other kind of headache or pain.
  • You should not use this medicine if your headache symptoms are different from your usual migraine headache. Call your doctor if you have an unusual or severe headache. Check with your doctor if you used this medicine and your migraine did not go away. Call your doctor if your symptoms do not improve or if they get worse.
  • You could make your migraine headaches worse if you take migraine medicine too often (more than 10 days every month). Keep track of how often you have migraines and how much medicine you use.
  • The orally disintegrating tablet contains phenylalanine. Tell your doctor if you have phenylketonuria (PKU).
  • This medicine may make you dizzy or drowsy. Do not drive, use machines, or do anything else that could be dangerous if you are not alert until you know how this medicine affects you.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine:

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Allergic reaction: Itching or hives, swelling in your face or hands, swelling or tingling in your mouth or throat, chest tightness, trouble breathing
  • Anxiety, restlessness, fast heartbeat, fever, sweating, muscle spasms, twitching, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, seeing or hearing things that are not there
  • Chest pain that may spread to your arms, jaw, back, or neck, trouble breathing, nausea, unusual sweating, faintness
  • Fast, slow, pounding, or uneven heartbeat
  • Numbness or weakness in your arm or leg, or on one side of your body
  • Severe stomach pain, bloody diarrhea
  • Sudden, severe, or unusual headache (other than the one being treated)
  • Pain in your lower leg (calf)
  • Problems with vision, speech, or walking
  • Tightness, pressure, or discomfort in your chest, neck, or jaw
  • Tingling, numbness, or cold feeling in your hands or feet

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Dizziness, drowsiness, or sleepiness
  • Dry mouth
  • Tiredness or weakness

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088


Last Updated: 4/4/2014

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