Axert

Axert Medication Information:

Axert medication comes in several different strengths; click on the strength you need to view prices from pharmacies competing to earn your business.

Axert 6.250 mg
Axert 12.500 mg

What is AXERT and what is Axert used for?

AXERT (almotriptan malate) is a medication used for the treatment of migraine attacks in adults. AXERT should not be used continuously to prevent or reduce the number of attacks you experience. AXERT is a member of a class of drugs called selective 5-HT1B/1D receptor agonists.

Tell your doctor about your symptoms. Your doctor will decide if you have migraine. Use AXERT only for a migraine attack. AXERT should not be used to treat headaches that might be caused by other, more serious conditions.

You will find more information about migraine at the end of this leaflet.


How should I take AXERT?

Your doctor has prescribed either a 6.25 mg or 12.5 mg dose of AXERT for your migraine attack. When you have a migraine headache, take your medication as directed by your doctor.

If your headache comes back after your initial dose, you may take a second dose any time after 2 hours of administering the first dose. If you had no pain relief after the first dose, do not take a second dose without first consulting with your doctor. Do not take more than 25 mg of AXERT in a 24-hour period (for example, do not take more than two 12.5 mg tablets in 24 hours).

If your condition worsens, seek medical attention.


Who should not take AXERT tablets?

Do not take AXERT if you have:

  • had a serious allergic reaction to AXERT or any of its ingredients;

  • uncontrolled high blood pressure;

  • heart disease or history of heart disease.

AXERT should not be used within 24 hours of treatment with another 5-HT1B/1D agonist, such as naratriptan (Amerge), rizatriptan (Maxalt), sumatriptan (Imitrex), or zolmitriptan (Zomig); or ergotamine-type medications such as ergotamine (Bellergal Spacetabs, Cafergot, Ergodryl, Ergomar, Gravergol, Megral), dihydroergotamine (Dihydroergotamine (DHE), Migranal), or methysergide (Sansert). (The brands listed are the trademarks of their respective owners and are not trademarks of McNeil Consumer Healthcare.)


What should I tell my doctor before and during treatment with AXERT?

Tell your doctor about any:

  • Past or present medical problems

  • History of high blood pressure, chest pain, shortness of breath, strokes, or heart disease

  • Risk factors for heart disease, such as:

    • High blood pressure or diabetes

    • High cholesterol

    • Obesity

    • Smoking

    • Family history of heart disease

    • You are a post-menopausal woman

    • You are a male over 40 years of age

  • Allergies you have or have had

  • Allergic reactions to sulfonamides, also known as sulfa drugs (ask your doctor if you are not sure what sulfonamide drugs are)

  • Kidney or liver disease

  • Plans to become pregnant, or if you are already pregnant

  • Plans to breast-feed, or if you are already breast-feeding an infant

  • Drugs you are taking or plan to take, including those obtained without a prescription, and those you normally take for a migraine.


What if I am pregnant?

Do not use AXERT if you are pregnant, think you might be pregnant, are trying to become pregnant, or are not using adequate contraception, unless you have discussed this with your doctor.


Can I take AXERT with other medications?

Do not take AXERT with any other drug in the same class within 24 hours, such as naratriptan (Amerge), rizatriptan (Maxalt), sumatriptan (Imitrex), or zolmitriptan (Zomig).

Do not take AXERT within 24 hours of taking ergotamine-type medications such as ergotamine (Bellergal Spacetabs, Cafergot, Ergodryl, Ergomar, Gravergol, Megral), dihydroergotamine (dihydroergotamine (DHE), Migranal), or methysergide (Sansert) to treat your migraine.

Tell your doctor if you are taking monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors, such as phenelzine sulfate (Nardil), moclobemide (Manerix) or tranylcypromine sulfate (Parnate) for mental depression, or if it has been less than two weeks since you stopped taking a MAO inhibitor.

Tell your doctor if you are taking ketoconazole (Nizoral, Apo-Ketoconazole, Novo-Ketoconazole), itraconazole (Sporanox), ritonavir (Norvir), or erythromycin (Apo-Erythro, Diomycin, Erybid, Eryc, Erythrocin, Erythromid, Novo-Rythro Encap, PCE, PMS-Erythromycin), or if it has been less than one week since you stopped taking one of these drugs.

Tell your doctor if you are taking selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, such as fluoxetine (Prozac) or serotonin norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors such as venlafaxine (EFFEXOR XR), two types of drugs for depression or other disorders.

Ask your doctor for instructions about taking AXERT if you are taking selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) such as sertraline, escitalopram and fluoxetine or serotonin norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) such as venlafaxine or duloxetine for depression. A life-threatening condition called serotonin syndrome can happen when medicines called triptans, such as AXERT, and medicines used to treat depression and mood disorders called SSRIs or SNRIs are used together. Signs and symptoms of serotonin syndrome include the following: restlessness, diarrhea, hallucinations, coma, loss of coordination, nausea, fast heart beat, vomiting, increased body temperature, changes in blood pressure and overactive reflexes.


What are the possible side effects for Axert of AXERT?

Like all prescription drugs, AXERT can cause side effects. In studies, AXERT was generally well tolerated. The side effects were usually mild and temporary. The following is not a complete list of side effects reported with AXERT. Do not rely on this leaflet alone for information about side effects. Ask your doctor to discuss with you the more complete list of side effects.

In studies, the most common side effects reported were:

  • Nausea

  • Sleepiness

  • Dizziness

  • Tingling sensation

  • Headache

  • Dry mouth

Other side effects that may rarely occur include:

  • shortness of breath, wheeziness, heart throbbing, increased blood pressure, fast heart rate or irregular heart rate. If any of these occur, do not take any more AXERT and contact your doctor immediately.

If you experience sleepiness after taking AXERT, you should not perform complex tasks such as driving or operating heavy machinery until you are sure you are no longer sleepy or drowsy.

Call your doctor immediately if you feel tightness, pain, pressure or heaviness in your chest, throat, neck or jaw after taking AXERT. Do not take AXERT again until your doctor has checked you.

Call your doctor immediately if you feel unwell or have any other symptoms that you do not understand or find distressing while taking AXERT.

Call your doctor immediately if you experience any symptoms that suggest an allergic reaction (such as a rash or itching) after taking AXERT.


What should I do if I take an overdose?

If you take more medication than you have been told to take, you should contact your doctor, hospital emergency department, or nearest poison control centre immediately, even if you do not feel sick.


What is migraine and how does Axert differ from other headaches?

Migraine is an intense, throbbing, typically one-sided headache that often includes nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to light, and sensitivity to sound. According to many migraine sufferers, the pain and symptoms from a migraine headache are more intense than the pain and symptoms of a common headache.

Some people may have visual symptoms before the headache, such as flashing lights or wavy lines, called an aura.

Migraine attacks typically last for hours or, rarely, for more than a day, and they can return frequently. The severity and frequency of migraine attacks may vary.

Based on your symptoms, your doctor will decide whether you have migraine.


Who gets migraines?

Migraine headaches tend to occur in members of the same family. Both men and women get migraine, but it is more common in women.


What may trigger a migraine attack?

Certain things are thought to trigger migraine attacks in some people. Some of these triggers are:

  • Certain foods or beverages (e.g. cheese, chocolate, citrus fruit, caffeine, alcohol)

  • Stress

  • Change in behaviour (e.g. under/oversleeping; missing a meal; change in diet)

  • Hormonal changes in women (e.g. menstruation).

You may be able to prevent migraine attacks or diminish their frequency if you understand what specifically triggers your attacks. Keeping a headache diary may help you identify and monitor the possible migraine triggers you encounter. Once the triggers are identified, you and your doctor can modify your treatment and lifestyle appropriately.


How does AXERT work during a migraine attack?

Migraine headache is believed to be caused by a widening of the blood vessels in the head. AXERT narrows the vessels and relieves the pain and other symptoms of migraine headache.


 

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