What Is Zolmitriptan Used For?
Some people may wonder, "What is zolmitriptan used for?" A healthcare provider may prescribe zolmitriptan to relieve the symptoms of a migraine headache. Zolmitriptan is not designed to prevent migraines from occurring; it is only used to treat the symptoms once they start. The medicine is also not approved for use in children and teens less than 18 years of age. One off-label zolmitriptan use is the treatment of cluster headaches.
Zolmitriptan (Zomig®) is a prescription medication that is used to treat migraine headaches. Zolmitriptan will not help to prevent migraines, but it can help to treat a migraine that is already occurring. In addition to zolmitriptan tablets, zolmitriptan nasal spray and zolmitriptan orally disintegrating tablets (which dissolve in the mouth) are also available.
Migraine headaches are different from other headaches in many ways. Some of the most common migraine symptoms include:
- Headache pain on one side of the head
- Sensitivity to light or sound
- Throbbing headache pain
- Upset stomach (nausea) and vomiting
- Unusual vision changes.
Some people may have an aura before their migraines occur. An aura can be any unusual sign that a migraine is about to happen, including vision changes, numbness, tingling, or speech changes. The most common type of aura is visual (such as seeing spots, tunnel vision, or other vision changes). Some people have migraine triggers, which are certain foods, drinks, or situations that seem to lead to a migraine (see Migraine Diet for more information).
Zolmitriptan is approved for the treatment of migraines with or without an aura. The medicine is part of a class of migraine drugs called 5-HT agonists (or more commonly known as "triptans"). During a migraine headache, some of the blood vessels in the head become dilated (wider than they usually are). Zolmitriptan works by narrowing these blood vessels and helping them return to their normal state. This action helps to relieve the symptoms of a migraine.
Due to the way it works, zolmitriptan is not useful for migraine prevention. Zolmitriptan is taken to lessen the pain and other symptoms of a migraine once it starts.