Almotriptan (Oral)

Almotriptan (Oral Route) is an effective treatment for the pain caused by migraine headaches in adults and teens. The drug is not effective in the prevention of migraines, nor does it help against other non-migraine related pain or headaches.

Overview

Almotriptan (Oral Route) is a prescription medication that treats migraines in teenagers and adults. This medicine is not an effective treatment for non-migraine headaches or other types of pain relief and is taken at the onset of the headaches, it does not prevent them. The maximum daily dosage is 25 mg, with 12.5 mg as the typical dosage amount. Patients are to follow their physician's instructions completely and should not alter their usage of the drug. When using Almotriptan to treat migraine headaches it is important to follow all instructions completely and discuss any alterations with the prescribing physician. As this drug is taken at the onset of a migraine headache there are no timing guidelines for the doses, although there is a maximum amount of 25mg that should not be exceeded in a 24-hour period.

Almotriptan can cause serious conditions like heart attack, stroke, and angina, and patients using this drug must be sure to notify their doctor of all of the drugs that they are currently taking, as well as any additional medical conditions that they may have. The first dosage is often administered in the doctor's office or clinic in order to study the patient's reaction to the drug. If the patient suffers from migraine headaches and other medications have not provided relief, Almotriptan has proven successful in such cases. Discuss this medication with the doctor and be sure that they are given a comprehensive list of all medications that are taken and how often. As there are possible side effects of this drug that can be quite serious in nature it is important to have a full understanding of what may occur when taking Almotriptan.

Condition(s) Treated

  • Migraine Headaches

Type of Medicine

  • Triptan
  • Antimigraine
  • Serotonin Receptor Agonist
  • 5-HT1

Side Effects

If any of the following side effects listed below are experienced, it is always best practice to consult with the prescribing doctor immediately. Vision issues can occur with the use of Almotriptan and the occurrence of blurred vision, difficulty with reading or any other change in vision may happen when taking Almotriptan. Stay aware of the possible side effects and if any changes are noticed in vision or other issues with the eyes, it is best to have an examination from an ophthalmologist.

When taking Almotriptan patients have reported incidences of sleepiness, lightheadedness, or other issues relating to their vision. It is a smart idea to understand the effects and reactions to this drug, and what side effects it may cause, prior to driving, using any machinery, or engaging in any activity that requires alertness with clear and focused vision.

Discuss any over the counter medicines, including herbs and vitamin supplements, with the prescribing physician prior to taking Almotriptan. Discuss all other prescription medicines that the patient is currently taking, the conditions treated, and the dosage of each.

Less common:

  • Eye irritation
  • Burning, prickling, crawling, itching, numbness, "pins and needles", or tingling feelings
  • Skin rash
  • Breathing difficulty
  • Discharge from the eye
  • Redness of the inner lining of the eyelid
  • Chest pain or a feeling of tightening
  • Neck pain or rigid neck
  • Fast, irregular, racing or pounding pulse or heartbeat
  • Tightness in the throat
  • Itching, redness, or swelling of the skin

Rare:

  • Blood in the stools
  • Abdominal pain or cramping
  • Indigestion
  • Pale, and clammy food
  • Excessive burping
  • Vomiting
  • Fainting
  • Stomach pain or cramping
  • Black, tarry stools
  • Severe chest pain or tightening
  • Paleness
  • Loss of vision
  • Diarrhea or other elimination issues
  • Discomfort or pain when swallowing
  • Earache
  • Elevated fever
  • Recurring heartburn
  • Increased sweating
  • A decrease in appetite
  • Loss of weight
  • Rapid breathing
  • Tightness in the chest

The side effects above can be symptoms of a more serious issue or can worsen when left untreated. If the patient suffers from any of the ailments listed, it is important to notify the prescribing doctor immediately.

The doctor can provide insight into which side effects are most prevalent with each condition and offer strategies to help minimize any side effects. Not all reactions will require medical attention, as some will actually dissipate on their own. The following side effects typically diminish on their own.

More common:

  • Lightheadedness or dizziness
  • Burning, prickly, tingly feeling or numbness in the extremities
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Dry mouth
  • Recurring headaches
  • Drowsiness

Less common:

  • Feelings of anxiety
  • Discomfort and congestion in the sinuses
  • Flushing or redness of the skin
  • Chills
  • Lumbar and lower back pain
  • Excessive burping
  • Indigestion
  • Increased sense of hearing
  • The feeling of warmth or heat
  • Changes in how things taste
  • Quivering or trembling
  • Mucus-producing coughs
  • Nosebleed
  • Sore throat
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Uncomfortable or painful menses
  • Lack of sensitivity when touched
  • Dizziness or feeling like you are spinning
  • The feeling of constant movement of self or surroundings
  • A decrease in strength and muscle tone
  • Weakness and pain in the muscles
  • Vomiting
  • A feeling of restlessness
  • Insomnia or difficulty with sleeping

Rare:

  • Abnormally increased the feeling of mental and physical well-being
  • Muscle stiffness
  • Change in dreams or nightmares
  • Pain, redness, swelling, or warmth in the joints
  • Change in sense of touch
  • Mental depression
  • Continuous, uncontrolled, back-and-forth or rolling eye movements
  • Increased thirst
  • Stabbing pain
  • Dry eyes
  • Drooling
  • Double vision
  • Dry throat
  • A feeling of pins and needles
  • Hoarseness
  • Increased sensitivity to sunlight
  • Difficulty in concentrating
  • Loss of voice
  • Cough
  • Change in sense of smell
  • Nervousness
  • Clumsiness or unsteadiness
  • Sneezing
  • Buzzing or ringing in the ears
  • Abnormal increase in reflexes

Other side effects that are not listed can occur. If the patient notices any changes to their overall health and well-being it is always a smart practice to contact a medical provider for advice and to keep them up to date on all reactions to any prescription drugs that the patient is taking.

Dosage

Adult Dosage:

Initial dose: 6.25 mg or 12.5 mg orally as a single dose
Repeat dose: If a headache is relieved, but returns, may repeat with 1 dose orally provided there is a minimum interval of 2 hours between doses.
Maximum daily dose: 25 mg

Adolescent Dosage (12 to 17 years):

Initial dose: 6.25 mg or 12.5 mg orally as a single dose
Repeat dose: If a headache is relieved, but returns, may repeat 1 dose orally provided there is a minimum interval of 2 hours between doses.

Maximum daily dose: 25 mg

Every patient profile is different and the doctor will prescribe the correct amount of almotriptan for each case. Taking too much of this drug can increase the likelihood of experiencing unwanted side effects, and it is important to take this drug exactly as prescribed. Typically, 6.25mg or 12.5mg will be prescribed for teenagers and adults, children under the age of 12 will receive direction from their own physician.

The maximum dosage amount for this drug is 25mg in a single day or 24-hour period. In some cases, a doctor may advise their patients to take two doses in one day if a migraine returns, but no more than 25mg in one day. Consult a physician for direction on the number of doses to take with each a migraine and the amount of time to elapse between doses.

The safety of treating an average of more than 4 migraines per month with Almotriptan has not been established, and the 12.5 mg dose is seen to be more effective in adults, although individuals do vary in their response, the dose should be individualized unless directed by a physician. In clinical trials, the effectiveness of a second dose has not been established.

Dosage Advice:

Almotriptan can be taken with or without food; when a migraine is gone but then returns, a second dose may be taken after at least 2 hours have elapsed, do not take more than 25 mg in one day or a 24-hour period.

General:

Almotriptan is for use by patients that have received a clear migraine diagnosis, and if the drug proves to be ineffective the doctor may want to re-confirm the patient's diagnosis. If you think that you are a good candidate for this drug, your doctor can further advise if it is a good treatment for your migraine symptoms. While taking this drug it is imperative to follow the direction of the prescribing doctor very carefully and thoroughly and to advise them of any changes in your condition. Almotriptan has proven effective in many patients who have not had success with other drugs.

If a headache goes away and comes back, take a second tablet two hours after the first. Do not take more than two tablets of Almotriptan in a single 24-hour period. If the symptoms have not improved, contact the prescribing doctor before taking any further doses. Never use more than the recommended dose. Overuse of migraine headache medicine has been reported to make headaches worse in some instances. Contact a doctor in the event that more than four headaches occur in a one-month period (30 days). Tell the doctor if this medicine seems to stop working or is not as effective in treating migraines. If the drug works initially and then stops working or is not as effective as it had been, be sure to notify the doctor as soon as possible. Medical advisors should be kept informed on how the migraines are responding to the Almotriptan treatment and of any changes in efficacy.

Patients who employ Almotriptan over an extended period of time will require an electrocardiograph (also known as an ECG or EKG) to monitor their heart health and determine if it continues to be safe to continue using Almotriptan. This drug is one that must be taken under careful medical supervision and direction and it is important to keep all medical appointments and closely follow the directions of your doctor.

Major Drug Interactions

The use of the drug Almotriptan is not advised for use by patients that have used ergot-type medications or a migraine medication that contains triptan within a period of 24 hours. Common types of medications that are classed as a triptan or those that contain DHE 45 are:

  • Wigraine
  • Migranal
  • Cafergot
  • Maxalt
  • Bellergal
  • Imitrex
  • Zomig
  • Frova
  • Amerge
  • Treximex
  • Sansert
  • Ergomar

Your doctor should be aware of all other medicines that you are taking including over the counter medications. Almotriptan may cause a serious condition called serotonin syndrome when taken with some medicines.

Harmful side effects can occur when this drug is used for other medications that are commonly used to treat depression:

  • citalopram (Celexa®)
  • fluoxetine (Prozac®, Sarafem®, or Symbyax®)
  • escitalopram (Lexapro®)
  • duloxetine (Cymbalta®)
  • fluvoxamine (Luvox®), paroxetine (Paxil®), sertraline (Zoloft®), or
  • venlafaxine (Effexor®).

Discuss any of the following symptoms with your doctor immediately because they are commonly caused by serotonin syndrome, a condition that requires immediate medical attention:

  • Fever
  • Confusion
  • Overactive reflexes
  • Diarrhea
  • Shivering
  • Agitation
  • Sweating
  • Excitement while talking that is not normal
  • Poor coordination
  • Restlessness and
  • Trembling or shaking that you cannot control, or twitching.

Warnings

If you suffer from any of the diseases and disorders listed below affect how Almotriptan works; be sure to inform your doctor of any current ailments you have, especially those listed below.

  • Angina
  • Hypertension (high blood pressure)
  • Kidney disease
  • Heart attacks
  • Obesity
  • Peripheral vascular disease (blocked arteries)
  • Hypertension that is not successfully controlled through medication
  • A hemiplegic migraine (with paralysis)
  • Ischemic bowel disease (bowels with low blood supply)
  • Migraines that include vision and hearing problems (Basilar)
  • Stroke, history of
  • Transient ischemic attack (TIA), or history of (do not use if there is a current or past history of TIA)
  • Coronary artery disease, history of
  • Hypercholesterolemia (high cholesterol in the blood)
  • Raynaud syndrome patients should use this drug with caution as your side effects may become worse.
  • Diabetes
  • Liver disease patients must exercise caution when using this drug as some complications may arise due to the bodies inability to quickly eliminate the drug from the system

This drug can increase your chance of angina, stroke, and heart attack. If you or other family members have a history of these conditions be sure to discuss with your physician.

Notify your doctor immediately in the event that you experience any unwanted feelings in your extremities like pain, achiness, or discomfort. Be aware that you may experience difficulty in moving facial muscles and extremities, which also requires medical attention. It is always best to err on the side of caution and contact your physician if you are unsure about the side effects or new symptoms that you may be experiencing. Your doctor can provide further guidance on how to remedy or lessen the effects and if they require further medical attention.

Any incidence of irregular vision, problems with talking, confusion, headaches, or slurring or impaired speech or other symptoms of stroke warrant a call to the prescribing doctor immediately and the patient should seek emergency treatment. If you are unsure if your symptoms warrant a trip to the Emergency Room it is always better to err on the side of caution when addressing any side effects that are caused by Almotriptan.

Storage

Almotriptan (Oral Route) should be stored in its original container, one that is airtight and prevents light from getting through. Keep the medicine at room temperature, away from moisture, and do not allow it to freeze or heat.

Unused or expired prescriptions need to be disposed of properly, under the direction of the prescribing doctor.

Keep this and all medications away from children.

Summary

If you suffer from migraines and have received little relief from other pain medications, Almotriptan may be an effective choice. This drug should only be taken under the direct supervision of a physician and in close care with them. Side effects can be serious and use of the drug has been linked to such conditions as heart attack, stroke, and angina. If you suffer from migraines and have other significant health ailments, be sure to thoroughly discuss your overall health prior to taking Almotriptan. Seratonin syndrome is another possible side effect, and it is imperative that your physician is aware of all medications, including over the counter drugs, that you are taking.

Almotriptan is not an effective treatment for non-migraine headaches or other types of headaches and does not work as a general pain reliever. This drug should be taken at the first sign of a migraine, and if it begins to become less effective alert your doctor immediately. Children under the age of 12 need to discuss the use of Almotriptan with their personal physician as its use in this age group is determined on a case by case basis. The effectiveness of Almotriptan (Oral Route) for the treatment of more than four migraine headaches per month has not been studied in clinical trials. If you suffer from more than four migraine headaches in a one-month period be sure to alert your physician to this and discuss possible treatments that can effectively treat them. Your doctor will be able to review your case and provide the necessary guidance for all dosage related questions.

Resources
Last Reviewed:
December 10, 2017
Last Updated:
April 04, 2018