Migraine Treatments

Sumatriptan for Migraine Treatment: What You Should Know

What is sumatriptan?

Sumatriptan (generic Imitrex®) is a triptan medication that help knock out the acute symptoms that come with a painful migraine headache.

What will it do for me?

When you feel a migraine headache starting, sumatriptan can help nip it in the bud (before you have to retreat into a dark room for two days) by relieving you from the full spectrum of migraine symptoms, which could include headache, nausea, sensitivity to light and/or sound.

How does it help?

Experts believe vasodilation plays a role in migraine attacks. Sumatriptan tablets act like traffic controllers for the blood vessels around your brain. When things get really bad, they help with treatment of migraines by…

  • narrowing the expanded blood vessels (also known as vasoconstriction for the scientist in you).
  • decreasing any inflammation in the nerves.
  • turning down the volume on those loud pain signals making your brain feel like it’s going to explode.

Where can I buy sumatriptan (generic Imitrex®)?

Sumatriptan is a prescription medicine so you’ll need to talk to your doctor first to make sure it’s right for you. You can get started today with a Cove doctor consultation to see if this is the right medication for your migraines.

How should I take it?

Right away, of course (which means you should try to take the prescribed dosage at the very first sign of a migraine). You can take sumatriptan tablets with water, with or without food.

What should I be cautious of?

If any of the below looks familiar, definitely talk to your doctor before taking sumatriptan because, like any prescription medication, drug interactions and side effects can be unpleasant. Here are some risk factors to consider:

  • You’re on other medications.
  • You’ve had angina, heart attack, or other heart conditions.
  • You’ve had a stroke or TIA.
  • You’ve had a stroke-like migraine (hemiplegic migraine).
  • You’ve been told you’ve had a brainstem migraine (basilar migraine).
  • You have poor circulation.
  • You have uncontrolled high blood pressure.
  • You have certain heart arrhythmias (irregular rhythms).
  • You have severe liver disease.
  • You’re taking other acute prescription migraine medication.

Can I take sumatriptan with other migraine medications?

Don’t take sumatriptan with any other triptans. Other acute pain and preventative medications are okay, but if it’s too confusing to figure out on your own, consult with your doctor to prevent any negative interactions.

What happens if can’t take it right away?

Take it as quickly as you can at the first signs of a migraine.

Where should I keep my sumatriptan?

Keep it in a cool, dry place.

Are there any side effects?

Many people using sumatriptan do not experience serious side effects. Some people do experience dizziness, warmth, tingling, and non-heart related chest discomfort. If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, you should discontinue use and contact your health care professional.

What other triptans are available?

There are currently six other triptan drugs prescribed in the United States in addition to sumatriptan: eletriptan (generic Relpax®), naratriptan (generic Amerge®), rizatriptan (generic Maxalt®), zolmitritpan (generic Zomig®), almotriptan (generic Axert®), and frovatriptan (generic Frova®).

In addition to sumatriptan, Cove currently offers oral eletriptan, naratriptan, rizatriptan, and zolmitritpan. Rizatriptan is available as a standard tablet or an orally-dissolving tablet (ODT).



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.

Eletriptan, naratriptan, and zolmitriptan are oral medications indicated for the acute treatment of migraine with or without aura in adults and is not used to prevent migraines. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of using this drug while you are pregnant. Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding. Call your doctor right away if you have allergic reactions like skin rash, itching or hives, swelling of the face, lips, or tongue, chest pain or chest tightness, signs and symptoms of a dangerous change in heartbeat or heart rhythm like chest pain; dizziness; fast, irregular heartbeat; palpitations; feeling faint or lightheaded; falls; breathing problems. Call your doctor right away if you have signs and symptoms of a stroke like changes in vision; confusion; trouble speaking or understanding; severe headaches; sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm or leg; trouble walking; dizziness; loss of balance or coordination. Call your doctor right away if you have signs and symptoms of serotonin syndrome like irritable; confusion; diarrhea; fast or irregular heartbeat; muscle twitching; stiff muscles; trouble walking; sweating; high fever; seizures; chills; vomiting. You can read more about eletriptan’s side effects, warnings, and precautions here. Full prescribing information for eletriptan is available here. You can read more about naratriptan’s side effects, warnings, and precautions here. Full prescribing information for naratriptan is available here. You can read more about zolmitriptan’s side effects, warnings, and precautions here. Full prescribing information for zolmitriptan is available 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.

Sumatriptan and rizatriptan are oral medications indicated for the acute treatment of migraine with or without aura in adults and not for the prophylactic therapy of migraine attacks or for the treatment of cluster headache. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan on getting pregnant. You will need to talk about the benefits and risks of using either of these drugs while you are pregnant. Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding. Call your doctor right away if you have chest, throat, neck, or jaw tightness, pain, pressure, or heaviness; break out in a cold sweat; shortness of breath; a fast heartbeat; a heartbeat that does not feel normal; or very bad dizziness or passing out. Very bad and sometimes deadly brain blood vessel problems like stroke have rarely happened with this drug. Call your doctor right away if you have weakness on 1 side of the body, trouble speaking or thinking, change in balance, drooping on 1 side of the face, or change in eyesight. You can read more about sumatriptan’s side effects, warnings, and precautions here. Full prescribing information for sumatriptan is available here. You can read more about Rizatriptan side effects, warnings, and precautions here. Full prescribing information for rizatriptan is available 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.