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Common Migraine Medications

Abortive Medications

Depending on your history and physical examination, your healthcare professional may prescribe treatment to stop the headaches once they have begun. Medications used for this purpose are called “abortive medications” and include:5

  • Analgesics with caffeine such as Excedrin® Migraine (acetaminophen, aspirin and caffeine).
  • Analgesics with caffeine and barbiturates such as Fiorinal® (butalbital, aspirin and caffeine) and Fioricet®(butalbital, acetaminophen and caffeine).
  • Non steroidal antiinflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as Advil® (ibuprofen), and Aleve® (naproxen sodium).
Excedrin Migraine is a registered trademark of Bristol-Myers Squibb Company
Fiorinal and Fioricet are registered trademarks of Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation
Advil is a registered trademark of Whitehall-Robbins Healthcare
Aleve is a registered trademark of Bayer Corporation

If the above medications do not help, your healthcare professional may prescribe more targeted abortives. These medications come in different forms, such as nasal sprays, injections and tablets, and include:

  • Ergotamines such as Cafergot® (caffeine and ergotamine tartrate) and Migranal® (dihydroergotamine).
  • Triptans such as Zomig®(zolmitriptan), Maxalt® (rizatriptan), Imitrex® (sumatriptan), Frova® (frovatriptan), Axert® (almotriptan) and Amerge® (naratriptan).
  • Triptans come in different formulations including conventional tablets, nasal sprays, orally disintegrating tablets and injections. Not all triptans are manufactured in each formulation.
Cafergot and Migranal are registered trademarks of Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation
Zomig is a registered trademark of AstraZeneca
Maxalt is a registered trademark of Merck & Co., Inc.
Imitrex is a registered trademark of GlaxoSmithKline
Frova is a registered trademark of Elan Pharmaceuticals/UCB Pharma, Inc.
Axert is a registered trademark of Pharmacia
Amerge is a registered trademark of GlaxoSmithKline

Preventive Migraine Medications

Your doctor may suggest medications to prevent migraines or reduce their frequency and/or severity if your migraines occur frequently and if they severely disrupt your every day life. Such medications include:5

  • Beta blockers such as Inderal® (propranolol)*, Blocadren ® (timolol maleate)*, and metoprolol.
  • Calcium-channel blockers such as Cardizem® (diltiazem) and Procardia® (nifedipine).
  • Antidepressants such as Prozac® (fluoxetine), Paxil® (paroxetine) and Zoloft® (sertraline).
  • Anticonvulsants such as Depakote® (valproic acid or divalproex sodium).*
  • NSAIDs such as Orudis® (ketoprofen) and Aleve® (naproxen sodium).
  • *Indicates medication approved by FDA for prevention of migraine
Inderal is a registered trademark of AstraZeneca
Blocadren is a registered trademark of Merck & Co, Inc.
Cardizem is a registered trademark of Aventis Pharmaceuticals
Procardia is a registered trademark of Pfizer Inc.
Prozac is a registered trademark of Eli Lilly and Company
Paxil is a registered trademark of GlaxoSmithKline
Zoloft is a registered trademark of Pfizer Inc.
Depakote is a registered trademark of Abbott Laboratories
Orudis is a registered trademark of Aventis Pharmaceuticals
Aleve is a registered trademark of Bayer Corporation
 
 
 
 
 
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