Nervous System Home > Sumatriptan

Sumatriptan is licensed to relieve symptoms of migraine headaches. It works by causing the blood vessels in the head to return to their normal state after dilating during a migraine. Conditions you should let your healthcare provider know about before taking the drug include heart problems, high blood pressure, and a history of seizures. Side effects include tingling sensations, dizziness, and chest discomfort.

What Is Sumatriptan?

Sumatriptan succinate (Alsuma™, Imitrex®, Sumavel®, Zecuity™) is a prescription medication that is used to treat migraine headaches. The medicine will not help prevent migraines, but it can help treat a migraine that is already occurring. The injectable forms are also approved for the acute treatment of cluster headaches.
Imitrex comes in the form of tablets, a nasal spray, a skin patch, and a standard injection. Alsuma comes as a standard injection. Sumavel comes in a unique, needle-free injection system. 
(Click What Is Sumatriptan Used For? for more information, including possible off-label uses.)

Who Makes This Drug?

Brand-name Imitrex is made by GlaxoSmithKline. Sumavel is made by Patheon UK, Ltd., for Zogenix, Inc. Alsuma is made by Meridian Medical Technologies™, Inc. Zecuity is manufactured by NuPathe, Inc.

How Does It Work?

Sumatriptan is part of a class of migraine medications called 5-HT agonists (more commonly known as "triptans"). During a migraine headache, some of the blood vessels in the head can become dilated (wider than they usually are). Sumatriptan works by narrowing these blood vessels, helping them return to their normal state. This action helps to relieve migraine symptoms.
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
List of references (click here):
Other Articles in This eMedTV Presentation




Related Channels

eMedTV Links
Copyright © 2006-2020 Clinaero, Inc.

eMedTV serves only as an informational resource. This site does not dispense medical advice or advice of any kind. Site users seeking medical advice about their specific situation should consult with their own physician. Click Terms of Use for more information.

This site complies with the HONcode standard for trustworthy health information:
verify here.