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What Is Almotriptan?

By H. Lo
Updated May 17, 2024
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Almotriptan is an oral prescription medication that treats symptoms of migraine headaches. It belongs to a group of medications known as triptans, which are the most frequent type of prescription medications used for treating migraines. Different over-the-counter medications, such as acetaminophen, aspirin and ibuprofen, can help with migraines, but almotriptan is useful if these medications fail to work. Even though it is a pain-reliever, almotriptan is different in that it only works to help alleviate symptoms of migraines. It does not prevent migraines from occurring, and it does not work for any other type of headache as well.

It is thought that widened blood vessels in the brain put pressure on the organ, causing migraines to occur. Adults and teenagers who suffer from migraines benefit from almotriptan because it narrows these widened blood vessels, which in turn, stops the transfer of pain signals to the brain. In addition, almotriptan also stops the release of specific substances that are responsible for migraine symptoms. Along with pain, these migraine symptoms include light sensitivity, nausea and vomiting. Before migraines occur, some people experience an aura, which involves several different visual symptoms such as blurred vision, eye pain and a temporary blind spot.

There are general guidelines for proper use of almotriptan, although dosage varies from person to person and patients should follow their doctor’s prescription instructions. At the first indication of a migraine, the patient should take one tablet whole, not broken, chewed or crushed. If the symptoms go away but return after a period of two hours or more, the patient can take another tablet. On the other hand, if the symptoms do not go away at all after taking the first tablet, the patient should talk to his doctor before taking a second dose of the medication. In a 24-hour time period, the patient should not take more than two tablets, and in addition, he should not take two tablets in one dose.

Side effects can occur from taking almotriptan. Common side effects of this medication include becoming drowsy, having a dry mouth, or getting a headache; although these are common side effects, if they become persistent, the patient should consult with his doctor. For serious side effects, though, the patient should seek immediate medical attention. The list of serious side effects is longer than that for common ones and includes symptoms associated with allergic reactions, such as difficulty breathing, rash and tightness in the chest. A few other serious side effects are bloody diarrhea, irregular heartbeat and fainting.

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