This medication has rarely caused a very serious lack of blood flow to the hands and feet (peripheral ischemia) or to the brain, which could cause a stroke. The risk is increased when this medication is taken with other drugs that can affect the removal of dihydroergotamine from your body. Examples include azole antifungals (such as ketoconazole, itraconazole), boceprevir, cobicistat, mifepristone, telaprevir, certain antidepressants (such as nefazodone), macrolide antibiotics (such as clarithromycin, erythromycin, troleandomycin), HIV NNRTIs (such as delavirdine), HIV protease inhibitors (such as ritonavir, nelfinavir, indinavir), SSRIs (such as fluoxetine, paroxetine, fluvoxamine), among others.Who should not take dihydroergotamine injection?
Dihydroergotamine is used to treat migraine headaches and cluster headaches. It is not recommended for migraines that affect only one side of the brain (hemiplegic migraine) or the base of the brain/neck area (basilar migraine), or to prevent migraines from occurring.
Dihydroergotamine is an ergot medication that helps narrow widened blood vessels in the head, thereby reducing the throbbing effects of these headaches.
Read the Patient Information Leaflet provided by your pharmacist before you start using dihydroergotamine and each time you get a refill. If you have any questions, consult your doctor or pharmacist.
Inject this medication into a vein, into a muscle, or under the skin as directed by your doctor. Dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment. Usually, this medication should be used only as needed. It is not meant for long-term daily use. This medication works best if it is taken as the first signs of the headache occur. If you wait until the headache has worsened, the medication may not work as well.
If your headache returns or you have no relief from the first dose, you may repeat the dose 1 hour after the first dose, but only if instructed to do so by your doctor.
If this medication is given into a muscle or under the skin, a third dose may be given 1 hour after the second dose if needed. Do not use more than 3 milliliters in 24 hours or 6 milliliters in a week.
If this medication is given into a vein, do not use more than 2 milliliters in 24 hours or 6 milliliters in a week.
If you are giving this medication to yourself at home, learn all preparation and usage instructions from your health care professional. The solution is normally clear and colorless. Before using, check this product visually for particles or discoloration. If either is present, do not use the liquid. Learn how to store and discard medical supplies safely.
Other "ergot" drugs (e.g., ergotamine, methysergide), or "triptan-type" drugs (e.g., sumatriptan) should not be used within 24 hours of this drug.
Tell your doctor if you notice increased use of this medication, the medication not working as well, a worsening of headaches, an increase in the number of headaches, or use of this medication for more than 2 headache episodes a week. Your doctor may need to change your medication and/or add a separate medication to prevent the headaches.
Dizziness, drowsiness, headache, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, flushing, or increased sweating may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor.
Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: slow/fast/irregular heartbeat, tingling/pain/coldness in the fingers/toes, whitish fingers/toes/nails, loss of feeling in the fingers/toes, bluish hands/feet, muscle pain/weakness in the arms/legs, severe stomach/abdominal pain, lower back pain, little or no urine.
Get medical help right away if any of these rare but very serious side effects occur: difficult/painful breathing, chest pain, confusion, slurred speech, weakness on one side of the body, vision problems.
In the US -
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to other ergot alkaloids (e.g., ergotamine); or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.
This medication should not be used if you have certain medical conditions. Before using this medicine, consult your doctor or pharmacist if you have: blood circulation disease (e.g., peripheral vascular disease such as arteriosclerosis, thrombophlebitis, Raynaud's disease), uncontrolled high blood pressure, heart/blood vessel disease (e.g., coronary artery disease, stroke, angina, heart attack), liver disease, kidney disease, severe blood infection (sepsis), recent blood vessel surgery.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: diabetes, family history of heart disease, high blood pressure (controlled), high cholesterol, stomach/intestinal problems (e.g., ischemic bowel syndrome), smoking/tobacco use, permanent ending of menstrual periods due to age/surgery/hormonal changes (post-menopausal).
This drug may make you dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do any activity that requires alertness until you are sure you can perform such activities safely. Limit alcoholic beverages. Remember that alcohol may be a cause of headaches.
Using tobacco/nicotine products while using this medication can increase the risk of serious side effects such as heart problems (such as chest pain, fast/slow/irregular heartbeat) and decreased blood supply to the brain/hands/feet. Do not use tobacco while taking this medication. If you smoke, talk to your doctor about how to stop smoking.
This medication must not be used during pregnancy. It may harm an unborn baby. Discuss the use of reliable forms of birth control (such as condoms, birth control pills) with your doctor. If you become pregnant or think you may be pregnant, tell your doctor immediately.
This drug may pass into breast milk and could have undesirable effects on a nursing infant. Therefore, breast-feeding is not recommended while using this drug. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.
See also Warning and How to Use sections.
Some products that may interact with this drug include: bronchodilators/decongestants/stimulants (such as epinephrine, pseudoephedrine, methylphenidate, amphetamine).
If you also take "triptan" migraine drugs (e.g., sumatriptan, rizatriptan), you will need to separate your "triptan" dose from your dose of this medication to reduce the risk of serious side effects. Ask your doctor how long you should wait between your doses of these drugs.
Check the labels on all your medicines (e.g., cough-and-cold products, diet aids, other migraine medications) because they may contain ingredients that could increase your heart rate or blood pressure. Ask your pharmacist about the safe use of those products.
If overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center. Symptoms of overdose may include: severe dizziness/drowsiness, loss of feeling in the fingers/toes, rapid/weak heartbeat, bluish hands/feet, seizures.
Do not share this medication with others.
Laboratory and/or medical tests (e.g., heart tests) may be performed to monitor your progress.
Certain foods/beverages or food additives (e.g., red wine, cheese, chocolate, monosodium glutamate, alcohol) as well as some lifestyle patterns (e.g., irregular eating/sleeping habits, stress) may bring about a migraine headache. Avoiding these "triggers" may help decrease the frequency of migraine headaches. Consult your doctor for more details.
Store at room temperature away from light and moisture. Do not refrigerate or freeze. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medications away from children and pets.
Information last revised December 2014. Copyright(c) 2014 First Databank, Inc.
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