Ondansetron (generic Zofran®) is an anti-nausea medication commonly prescribed to migraine sufferers. It’s used to treat moderate to severe nausea and vomiting. It’s commonly marketed under the brand name Zofran®. While it was originally developed to help with nausea and vomiting associated with chemotherapy treatments, it’s now also used for other types of nausea—including postoperative nausea and nausea resulting from migraines or common migraine medications.
It is available as ondansetron, a standard tablet, or as ondansetron ODT. That ODT stands for orally-dissolving tablet, which means it melts in your mouth.
Ondansetron is a prescription medication, which means you can’t get it over the counter. It must be prescribed by a healthcare professional. Get started today with a Cove doctor consultation.
Ondansetron is part of a class of medications called serotonin 5-HT3 receptor antagonists. That’s a fancy way of saying that ondansetron blocks the action and effects of serotonin, a natural chemical in your body that can cause nausea and vomiting.
If this is your first dose, it’s normal to have some questions about how to properly take this medication. Fortunately, it’s straightforward. Ondansetron can be taken with or without food and water (which is good news when you’re already feeling sick to your stomach).
Generally, ondansetron is well-tolerated and has few serious side effects, especially when taken on an infrequent, as-needed basis. However, you should tell your doctor if you have a known allergy to ondansetron or any of its ingredients so that you can avoid a potential allergic reaction.
Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding. While some doctors do prescribe ondansetron to treat nausea and morning sickness during pregnancy, definitive studies about the safety of this medication in pregnancy are difficult to find. Ondansetron is FDA-approved for nausea, but not specifically for morning sickness.
Of course, it’s smart to inform your healthcare providers of all of your medical conditions, as well as all of the medications—both prescription and over the counter—you are currently taking.
Let your doctor know if you have been taking ondansetron more than a few times each week.
Yes, it’s safe to take ondansetron along with any other migraine medications. It does not interfere with or alter the effectiveness of those other treatments or medications.
Keep ondansetron in its package until you are ready to take it. It should be stored in a dry place at room temperature, and should also be protected from direct light.
Metoclopramide (generic Reglan®) is another common prescription medication used to treat migraine-related nausea that’s available from Cove.
The information provided in this article is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. You should not rely upon the content provided in this article for specific medical advice. If you have any questions or concerns, please talk to your doctor.
Ondansetron is a medication used to treat or prevent upset stomach and throwing up. Tell your doctor or get medical help right away if you have any of the following signs or symptoms that may be related to a very bad side effect: signs of an allergic reaction, chest pain or pressure, slow heartbeat, numbness and tingling, belly pain, trouble passing urine, trouble controlling body movements, change in eyesight, feeling very sleepy, seizures, dizziness, fever or chills, allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue; breathing problems; confusion; dizziness; fast or irregular heartbeat; feeling faint or lightheaded, falls; fever and chills; loss of balance or coordination; seizures; sweating; swelling of the hands and feet; tightness in the chest; tremors; unusally weak or tired. A type of abnormal heartbeat (prolonged QT interval) can happen with this drug. Call your doctor right away if you have a fast heartbeat, a heartbeat that does not feel normal, or if you pass out. A very bad and sometimes deadly health problem called serotonin syndrome may happen. The risk may be greater if you take this drug with drugs for depression, migraines, or certain other drugs. Check with your doctor or health care professional as soon as you can if you have any sign of an allergic reaction. Tell your doctor if you have any of these conditions: heart disease; history of irregular heartbeat; liver disease; low levels of magnesium or potassium in the blood; an unusual or allergic reaction to ondansetron, granisetron, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives; pregnant or trying to get pregnant; breast-feeding. Call your doctor right away if you have agitation; change in balance; confusion; hallucinations; fever; fast or abnormal heartbeat; flushing; muscle twitching or stiffness; seizures; shivering or shaking; sweating a lot; very bad diarrhea, upset stomach, or throwing up; or very bad headache. Full prescribing information for ondansetron is available here, and for ondansetron ODT is available here. You can read more about ondansetron side effects, warnings, and precautions here. You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit MedWatch: https://www.fda.gov/Safety/MedWatch/default.htm or call 1-800-FDA-1088.