Generically known as Rizatriptan, Maxalt is used to cure migraines. Belonging to the family of drugs known as Triptans, it helps to relieve the symptoms of migraine that usually includes pain, headache, nausea, vomiting or light/sound sensitivity.
How it works
‘Serotonin’ is a natural substance that causes narrowing of blood vessels which is a common cause for migraines. Rizatriptan affects serotonin as well as certain brain nerves that will help to widen the blood vessels which will in turn, relieve the pain.
While curing your migraine, this medicine might diminish the need to use other pain medications as well. Although Maxalt will allow you to return to your normal way of life promptly, it will not stop migraine attacks from happening in the future or reduce the frequency in which they occur.
When the first signs of a migraine are noted, the medication should be taken as directed by your physician. It can be taken by mouth with/ without food, but it is known to work better on an empty stomach. The dosage will usually be based on factors like age, medical condition, treatment response and other drugs that you might be using.
Recommended dose for adults is 5mg/10mg. If the symptoms are not fully reduced, an adult can take a second dose at least after 2 hours of the first one. If the symptoms are not improved, it is best to talk to your doctor before increasing the doses as it might increase the risk of unwanted reactions. Patients who are within the age range 6 to 17 should take the medication based on their body weight (5mg when patient’s body weight is less than 40kg; 10mg when the body Weight is 40kg or more). Make sure not go beyond the daily dose of 30 mg.
The occurrence of serious side effects is rare for this medication but there is a risk of your blood pressure rising due to it. Also, if serious side effects as the following do occur, quickly call your doctor/pharmacist.
Fingers/nails/ toes turning bluish
Hands & feet getting cold
Changes in hearing, mentality and moods.
Lesser known side effects of Rizatriptan include:
As this is not a complete list, the occurrence of any other side effects should be reported to your medical practitioner right away.
Taking this medicine while using other drugs might raise the risk of increasing the serotonin levels in your body. This might result in a serious condition known as “Serotonin syndrome/toxicity”. In order to avoid this, talk to your doctor or pharmacist about other medications that you are consuming. They should also be aware of any other allergies you may have for Rizatriptan. If you have conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, family history of heart disease or high cholesterol, your physician should be informed beforehand as these conditions might increase the risk of getting heart problems. Do not perform activities that require high alertness (like use of heavy machinery, driving, etc.) as Maxalt might cause dizziness or drowsiness.
If you are pregnant, this medicine should only be used if it’s clearly needed, along with proper medical advice from your doctor. Also consult him/her if you are breast-feeding as the passing of this drug into breast milk is not verified.