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Does Maxalt have caffeine in it?

Medically reviewed by Leigh Ann Anderson, PharmD. Last updated on May 15, 2023.

Official answer

  • No, Maxalt does not contain caffeine. Maxalt contains rizatriptan benzoate, a medicine in a class of prescription drugs known as “triptans” used to treat migraine headaches.
  • Maxalt (rizatriptan) works by constricting the blood vessels around the brain. It also lowers chemicals in the body that can trigger a migraine, nausea, and light or sound sensitivity.
  • Maxalt does not prevent a migraine or reduce the number of headaches that may occur. You take this medicine at the start of a migraine headache.

Maxalt is approved for use in adults and children 6 to 17 years of age. Dosing in children is based on body weight.

Maxalt comes either as a 10 mg traditional tablet that you swallow whole or as a 10 mg orally disintegrating tablet (Maxalt-MLT) that you place on your tongue to dissolve and swallow. No liquid is needed to take the orally disintegrating tablet. The Maxalt 5 mg brand name tablets or orally dissolving tablets are no longer commercially available.

Maxalt is also available as a generic option at the pharmacy which may save you money. Oral rizatriptan tablets and orally disintegrating tablets are both available generically as 5 mg or 10 mg tablets.

Excedrin Migraine is an over-the-counter medicine for the treatment of migraine headache pain that does contain caffeine. It also contains the common pain relievers aspirin and acetaminophen. Caffeine has been shown to increase the effects of pain relievers like aspirin and acetaminophen and help make these medicines more effective in migraine headaches.

Learn more: How much caffeine is in Excedrin Migraine?

What are the ingredients in Maxalt?

  • The active ingredient in both Maxalt and Maxalt-MLT is rizatriptan benzoate, a triptan used to treat migraine headaches.
  • Maxalt tablets also contain the following inactive ingredients: lactose monohydrate, microcrystalline cellulose, pregelatinized starch, ferric oxide (red), and magnesium stearate.
  • Maxalt-MLT orally disintegrating tablets also contain the following inactive ingredients: gelatin, mannitol, glycine, aspartame, and peppermint flavor.
  • Phenylketonurics should note that Maxalt-MLT 10 mg orally disintegrating tablets also contains 2.1 mg aspartame per tablet, a source of phenylalanine.

Prescription medicines in the triptan class used for migraine headaches include:

  • almotriptan (Axert)
  • eletriptan (Relpax)
  • frovatriptan (Frova)
  • naratriptan (Amerge)
  • rizatriptan (Maxalt, Maxalt-MLT)
  • sumatriptan (Imitrex, Tosymra)
  • zolmitriptan (Zomig, Zomig-ZMT)

Triptans come in various dosage forms, such as oral tablets and orally-disintegrating tablets, subcutaneous (SQ) injections, prefilled pens for SQ injection, and nasal sprays or powders.

This is not all the information you need to know about Maxalt or Maxalt-MLT for safe and effective use and does not take the place of talking to your doctor about your treatment. Review the full Maxalt (rizatriptan) information here, and discuss this information and questions with your doctor or other health care provider.


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