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Eletriptan

Generic Name: eletriptan (EL e TRIP tan)
Brand Name: Relpax
Dosage Forms: oral tablet (20 mg; 40 mg)

Medically reviewed by Drugs.com on July 2, 2020. Written by Cerner Multum.

What is eletriptan?

Eletriptan is used to treat migraine headaches with or without aura in adults. Eletriptan will only treat a headache that has already begun. It will not prevent headaches or reduce the number of attacks.

Eletriptan should not be used to treat a common tension headache, a headache that causes loss of movement on one side of your body, or any headache that seems to be different from your usual migraine headaches. Use eletriptan only if your condition has been confirmed by a doctor as migraine headaches.

Eletriptan may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Warnings

You should not use eletriptan if you have ever had heart disease, coronary artery disease, blood circulation problems, Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome, uncontrolled high blood pressure, severe liver disease, a heart attack or stroke, or if your headache seems to be different from your usual migraine headaches.

Do not take eletriptan within 24 hours before or after using another migraine headache medicine.

Do not use eletriptan within 72 hours before or after taking: clarithromycin, troleandomycin, itraconazole, ketoconazole, nefazodone, ritonavir, or nelfinavir.

Before taking this medicine

You should not use eletriptan if you are allergic to it, or if you have:

  • heart problems, or a stroke (including "mini-stroke");

  • circulation problems affecting your legs, arms, stomach, intestines, or kidneys;

  • a heart disorder called Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome;

  • uncontrolled high blood pressure; or

  • a headache that seems different from your usual migraine headaches.

Do not take eletriptan within 24 hours before or after using another migraine headache medicine, including:

Do not use eletriptan within 72 hours before or after taking: clarithromycin, troleandomycin, itraconazole, ketoconazole, nefazodone, ritonavir, or nelfinavir.

Tell your doctor if you have ever had:

  • liver or renal disease;

  • heart problems or stroke; or

  • risk factors for coronary artery disease (such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, menopause, smoking, a family history of coronary artery disease, being overweight, or being older than 40 and a man).

Be sure your doctor knows if you also take stimulant medicine, opioid medicine, herbal products, or medicine for depression, mental illness, Parkinson's disease, migraine headaches, serious infections, or prevention of nausea and vomiting. These medicines may interact with eletriptan and cause a serious condition called serotonin syndrome.

Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is not known whether eletriptan will harm an unborn baby. However, having migraine headaches during pregnancy may cause complications such as high blood pressure or eclampsia (dangerously high blood pressure that can lead to medical problems in both mother and baby). The benefit of treating migraines may outweigh any risks to the baby.

It may not be safe to breastfeed while using eletriptan. Ask your doctor about any risk.

Eletriptan is not approved for use by anyone younger than 18 years old.

How should I take eletriptan?

Follow all directions on your prescription label and read all medication guides or instruction sheets. Your doctor may occasionally change your dose. Use the medicine exactly as directed.

Take eletriptan as soon as you notice migraine symptoms.

After taking a tablet: If your headache does not completely go away, or goes away and comes back, take a second tablet 2 hours after the first. Do not take more than 80 mg of eletriptan in 24 hours. If your symptoms have not improved, contact your doctor before taking any more tablets.

Call your doctor if your headache does not go away at all after taking the first eletriptan tablet.

If you use eletriptan long-term, your heart function may need to be checked using an electrocardiograph or ECG (sometimes called an EKG).

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Since eletriptan is used as needed, it does not have a daily dosing schedule. Call your doctor promptly if your symptoms do not improve after using eletriptan.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

What should I avoid while taking eletriptan?

Avoid driving or hazardous activity until you know how eletriptan will affect you. Your reactions could be impaired.

Eletriptan side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • fast, slow, or uneven heart rate;

  • sudden severe stomach pain (especially after meals), constipation or diarrhea, weight loss;

  • fever, diarrhea that is bloody;

  • numbness, tingling, cold feeling or burning pain in your feet or toes;

  • tightness or heavy feeling in your legs, pale or blue-colored appearance in your fingers or toes;

  • severe headache, blurred vision, pounding in your neck or ears; or

  • signs of a stroke--sudden numbness or weakness (especially on one side of the body), sudden severe headache, slurred speech, problems with vision or balance.

Stop using eletriptan and call your doctor at once if you have:

  • heart attack symptoms--chest pain or pressure, pain spreading to your jaw or shoulder, nausea, sweating.

Seek medical attention right away if you have symptoms of serotonin syndrome, such as: agitation, hallucinations, fever, sweating, shivering, fast heart rate, muscle stiffness, twitching, loss of coordination, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea.

Common side effects may include:

  • dizziness, drowsiness;

  • nausea; or

  • weakness, feeling tired.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Eletriptan dosing information

Usual Adult Dose for Migraine:

Use only after a clear diagnosis of migraine has been established

Initial dose: 20 mg or 40 mg orally, once
-Provided there has been some response to first dose, a second dose may be administered at least 2 hours later if migraine returns or symptoms recur.
Maximum dose: 80 mg in a 24-hour period

Comments:
-Doses should be individualized as responses vary; in clinical trials, benefit was observed with 20 mg, 40 mg, and 80 mg doses; however an increased incidence of side effects was observed at the 80 mg dose.
-This drug should not be used to treat basilar or hemiplegic migraines because these patients are at a greater risk of stroke.
-The safety of treating an average of 3 or more migraine attacks in a 30-day period has not been established.

Use: For the acute treatment of migraine with or without aura.

What other drugs will affect eletriptan?

Tell your doctor about all your other medicines, especially an antidepressant.

Other drugs may affect eletriptan, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any medicine you start or stop using.

Further information

Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.