i live in the uk and i've been taking it for more than 30 years to control my 3-4 migraines a week - just went to get a prescription renewed and i'm told it's no longer available in the uk - at this point in time, all i can see is losing my job and then losing my house and ending up on the streets! does anybody have any information? have tried all other migraine meds and prophylactics but nothing else works for me . . .
I am in your same boat.
After a few searches this morning, I believe I will resort to ordering it online, overseas. I have never, EVER, done this before, but the only other relief I can see are many many trips to the ER.
I even visited Sandoz's site, and it isn't even included in their list of drugs anymore! WTH? -I do know that Sandoz merged with another pharma co. to become Novartis over a decade ago already; but apparently Novartis isn't making it either.
With NO prior notification to our doctors, or even our pharmacies, this is a shameful and sinful thing to do to those of us who have used it to ward off our migraines for so many, many, years!
I cannot take any of the newer triptans either because they are contraindicated with my daily use of Paxil!!!
Go figure. Grrrrr...
Sandoz/Novartis ALSO made the generics.
Screwed we are!
Cafergot 100mg tablets are available in Switzerland under the Novartis label. I have been buying packets of 100 from the local pharmacy and sending them to a relative in the US for about 12 months due to lack of availability there. I checked with local pharmacy last week and they advised that they are still available from their wholesaler. Approx. CHF 45 for 100 tablets.
carol1945: I would suggest contacting a pharmacy in Switzerland and asking them whether they would mail a prescription to you. Your doctor would need to fax the prescription to the pharmacy or possibly you could scan and email the prescription to the pharmacy yourself. You would need to agree with them to pay via credit card, which should be possible. I think you would want to explain the availability situation to them. Also, you might want to get six or twelve months supply at a time. Hope this helps.
I also live in the UK and like you have used cafergot suppositories for @ 30 years. Also like you have tried all other treatments and they don't work like cafergot. I can't swallow tablets and so the suppositories are ideal as they bypass the gut, which is essential with migraines. I had got my medication down to a fine art by just using @ a quarter of the suppository which aborted any attack within 3 hours. I totally understand your feelings about cafergot being discontinued without warning and I am distraught. I have been searching the Internet for any generic replacement, so far without success. If I manage to find anything I will put it on here, meanwhile this week I am writing a very angry letter to Alliance, Novartis and Sandoz Pharmaceuticals.
I am in the U.S. Our cafergot and ergotamine supply has ended also. Like you, I had tried other migraine meds without getting sufficient help. Finally, I contacted a compounding lab. They will compound any medications that are no longer available from a manufacturer. My doctor provided the prescription; it required about 2 weeks for the lab to receive the caffine needed for the cafergot formula; I now have cafergot in capsule form (instead of pill form). The cost to me was about $1.50 a capsule; I will submit the papers to my health insurance company & we will see how that plays out. I hope this helps you...
Migril is the closest replacement to Cafergot . Here in the UK it's available on prescription. They've added the anti sickness drug cyclizine to the caffeine and ergotamine compound. My mother took half a tablet and that worked the same as 1 Cafergot. The dosage of ergotamine is double(2mg) that of Cafergot so be aware of that.
I've just joined the chat. Have also just found out about Cafergot being unavailable in Canada, where I live. Have been taking it and managing well for 20+ years. Health Canada said ergotamine is not a banned substance in Canada, so I can get a compounding pharmacy to make it up from the individual Cafergot ingredients -- if they can find a supply of ergotamine (lots of caffeine around for the taking!). If not available domestically, they can order ergotamine from abroad through a Canadian licenced company (or, by a longer route, apply to import directly under a special provision of Health Canada). You have to get your doctor to write on the prescription: Cafergot: compounded alternative. I'm off to see my doc tomorrow and on to the pharmacy with the prescription. The pharmacy by phone was very helpful, said they deal all the time with discontinued drugs, compounding them for customers. It all comes down to accessing a source of ergotamine.
I am also disgusted that my regular pharmacy could find no reference to the discontinuation of cafergot. I got a refill just a few months ago OK. Also, FYI, a prescription from a Canadian doctor cannot be filled in another country. However, I'm going over to the UK in July and family there say Migril is still available through the NHS so I could go to a UK dr. and get a prescription and legally import the drug to Canada. If I am travelling TO the UK, I must (emphasized) take with me a letter from my dr. listing the generic name and dose of the alternative drug I am carrying (made up by the compounding pharmacy), plus a copy of the dr's prescription, otherwise UK customs will confiscate what I am carrying into the UK.
Hope this helps, at least to any Canadians on line here.
I could not remember where this question was posted online; even though I have used drugs.com since I learned... (I had better add it to my list of favorites).
I saw an ad on TV and found that only 30 miles away the pharmacist will compound ergotamine for me- AND, at a very reasonable price!
I am so happy I could dance- But with 30 fractures I'd best not try...
I have been on Migril for over 30 years which I see from the above posts has been suggested as an alternative to Cafergot. It has been my saviour and lifeline over the years so was absolutely gutted to go for a repeat prescription to Boots yesterday to be told it is suddenly unavailable. Is there anywhere you can order meds to the UK from abroad as I don't think I can exist without it!
Cafergot was recently discontinued in Canada. None of the expensive designer drugs was as effective. I found a suggestion online that a _compounding pharmacy_ could compound it. My doctor found one, Smith's Pharmacy in Toronto, and I now have Cafergot once again! I had them compound it in a half strength dosage, 0.5 mg ergotamine tartrate and 50 mg caffeine citrate, which usually is enough for me (half a tablet). Works like a charm!
- Cafergot Information for Consumers
- Cafergot Information for Healthcare Professionals (includes dosage details)
- Side Effects of Cafergot (detailed)
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