How Effective is Imitrex, Know its Dosage, Side Effects

You might experience a headache and need to find a painkiller to help you relieve the pain, worry not as here we are going to know more if Imitrex might be the best drug for you.

Imitrex or sumatriptan should only be used under the doctor’s confirmation of your condition. This disqualifies the use of Imitrex to treat common tension headaches or the headaches that cause paralysis to one side of the body.

How Effective is Imitrex?

How Effective is Imitrex?

Imitrex commonly known as sumatriptan is a drug that effectively narrows down the blood vessels around the brain and relieves you from a headache. Imitrex or sumatriptan does not only relieve the headache, it also effectively reduces the substances than can cause the headache pains, nausea, sensitivity to light and sound and other migraine symptoms.

Imitrex or sumatriptan drug treats an existing headache; a headache that has already began, it is usually used for effective treatment of migraine headache. It is not used for prevention of headaches as it cannot prevent a headache from occurring or reduce the number of attacks.

Before the doctors confirmation, one should let him or her be aware if they are under use of any antidepressants such as paroxetine (Paxil), escitalopram (Lexapro), citalopram (Celexa), duloxetine (Cymbalta), setraline (Zoloft), desvenlafaxine (Pristiq), fluvoxamine (Luvox), fluoxetine (Prozac, Sarafem), or venlafaxine (Effrexor).

One should take one tablet and the second imitrex or sumatriptan tablet taken after two hours, you should not take more than 200milligrams of sumatriptan within 24hrs.

Common Knowledge Before Taking Imitrex

One might be allergic to imitrex or sumatriptan, this makes them not fit for its use. At other times one might have the following conditions that make them not to use the drug:

  • Lack of blood supply to your heart, blood circulation ailments, CAD or coronary artery disease, angina (chest pains);
  • Circulation problems which are affecting your intestines;
  • Wolff-Parkinson-white syndrome heart disorder;
  • Severe liver illness;
  • Heart attack, heart diseases, or stroke
  • High B.P (blood pressure) that cannot be treated or controlled;
  • Severe headache other than the usual migraine headache.

What is the Suggested Dosage of Imitrex?

The dosage can be only given after a clear diagnosis of the migraine.

The common adult dosage of imitrex or sumatriptan for migraine is as follows:


Take an initial dosage of 25 milligrams, 50 milligrams or 100 milligrams orally at once.

In case of a response or relieve after taking the first dosage, take the second dosage at least after 2hrs after the first dosage only when need arises.

Oral dosages of 50 milligrams and 100 milligrams of imitrex or sumatriptan provide a greater relief than that of 25 milligrams although the 100 milligrams may not be as effective as the 50 milligrams.

Only take a maximum dosage of 200 milligrams within 24hrs.


It is a nasal spray with an initial dosage of 5 milligrams, 10 milligrams, or 20milligrams into one nostril at once.

One should administer the 5 and 20 milligrams dosages as a single spray in 1 nostril, alternatively the 10 milligrams dosages can be administered as 5 milligrams into each nostril.

In case of relief after the first imitrex or sumatriptan dosage, the second dosage can be taken at least after 2hrs after the first dosage

A maximum of 40 milligrams of imitrex or sumatriptan within 24hrs is the safest usage.

Nasal Capsules/Powder:

Take 11 milligrams of imitrex or sumatriptan into each nostril by the use of an X sail breath-powder delivery device all at once.

In neither case of nor treatment after 2hrs or lack of improvement, then a second dosage may be administered 2hrs after the dosage.

A maximum dosage of 2 imitrex or sumatriptan that total to 44 milligrams/4 nosepieces within 24hrs is the safest.

Imitrex or sumatriptan treatment is done at the initial symptom of a migraine or for other symptoms such as photophobia, nausea, vomiting etc. It should strictly not be used for migraine prophylaxis.

Taking a high dosage of imitrex or sumatriptan may be effective but creates a greater risk for adverse reaction.

Treating 4 headaches within a 30 day period has not been established to be the safest method of treatment.

What are the Side Effects of Imitrex?

Allergic reactions such as difficulty breathing, hives, swelling of your tongue, face, throat, lips should cause an alarm and you should call for a doctor.

In case one is under the usage of imitrex or sumatriptan, stop the dosage when you experience the following severe side effects of imitrex or sumatriptan:

  • Difficulty in blood circulation evidenced by cramps in the legs or hips, tight or heavy feeling in your leg, numbness or tingling on the leg, muscle weakness, burning pain in the feet, pale or blue colouring on the toes, convulsions also called seizures.
  • Sudden and severe stomach pain and bloody diarrhea.
  • Extremely severe headache that result in pounding in your neck or ears, severe chest pains, shortness of breath and irregular heartbeat.
  • Increased serotonin levels in the body by experiencing agitation, nausea, hallucination, vomiting, fever, loss of coordination, fast heart rate, overactive reflexes, diarrhea, and fainting.
  • Heart attack symptoms such as chest pain or pressure and pain spreading to your jaw or shoulders, nausea and sweating.
  • Sudden numbness or weakness, sudden severe headache and slurred speech, problem with vision or balance which are common signs of stroke.

The most common imitrex or sumatriptan side effects are:

  • Tight feeling or pain on the chest, throat and jaw.
  • Running nose after the nasal dosage.
  • Burning, numbness, pain or other irritation on the nose or throat after using the nasal drug.
  • Unpleasant mouth taste after using the nasal dosage.
  • Weakness, drowsiness, dizziness are common side effects of imitrex or sumatriptan.
  • Numbness or tingling, having the feeling of being hot or cold.
  • Feeling heavy in any part of the body.


Team PainAssist
Team PainAssist
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Team PainAssist, Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:June 10, 2019

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