November 29, 2015
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Imitrex Side Effects Center

Medical Editor: Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

Last reviewed on RxList 4/24/2015

Imitrex (sumatriptan) is a selective serotonin receptor agonist used in oral, intranasal or injectable dosage form to treat migraine headaches. Imitrex is available as a generic drug. Common side effects of Imitrex are mild headache (not a migraine), pain or chest tightness, pressure or heavy feeling in any part of your body, weakness, feeling hot or cold, dizziness, spinning sensation, drowsiness, nausea, vomiting, drooling, unusual taste in your mouth after using nasal spray, burning or irritation in your nose or throat after using nasal spray, or warmth, redness, or tingling under the skin.

Drug interactions of Imitrex include sibutramine (Meridia); monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) isocarboxazid (Marplan); selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, fluoxetine (Prozac) and sertraline (Zoloft), serotonin; norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors, venlafaxine (Effexor)) and duloxetine (Cymbalta); and ergot-containing medications, dihydroergotamine (Migranal) and ergotamine (Methergine). The safety of using Imitrex during pregnancy has not been established and it is secreted in breast milk.

Our Imitrex Side Effects Drug Center provides a comprehensive view of available drug information on the potential side effects when taking this medication.

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.

What is Patient Information in Detail?

Easy-to-read and understand detailed drug information and pill images for the patient or caregiver from Cerner Multum.

Imitrex in Detail - Patient Information: Side Effects

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

Stop using sumatriptan and call your doctor if you have a serious side effect such as:

  • feeling of pain or tightness in your jaw, neck, or throat;
  • chest pain or heavy feeling, pain spreading to the arm or shoulder, nausea, sweating, general ill feeling;
  • sudden numbness or weakness, especially on one side of the body;
  • sudden severe headache, confusion, problems with vision, speech, or balance;
  • sudden and severe stomach pain and bloody diarrhea;
  • seizure (convulsions);
  • numbness or tingling and a pale or blue-colored appearance in your fingers or toes; or
  • (if you are also taking an antidepressant) -- agitation, hallucinations, fever, fast heart rate, overactive reflexes, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of coordination, fainting.

Less serious side effects may include:

  • mild headache (not a migraine);
  • pressure or heavy feeling in any part of your body;
  • feeling hot or cold;
  • dizziness, spinning sensation;
  • drowsiness;
  • nausea, vomiting, drooling;
  • unusual taste in your mouth after using the nasal spray;
  • burning, numbness, pain or other irritation in your nose or throat after using the nasal spray; or
  • warmth, redness, or mild tingling under your skin.

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.

Read the entire detailed patient monograph for Imitrex (Sumatriptan Succinate)

What is Patient Information Overview?

A concise overview of the drug for the patient or caregiver from First DataBank.

Imitrex Overview - Patient Information: Side Effects

SIDE EFFECTS: Flushing, feelings of tingling/numbness/prickling/heat, tiredness, weakness, drowsiness, or dizziness may occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly.

Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.

This medication may raise your blood pressure. Check your blood pressure regularly and tell your doctor if the results are high.

Tell your doctor right away if you have any serious side effects, including: blue fingers/toes/nails, cold hands/feet, hearing changes, mental/mood changes.

Chest/jaw/neck tightness can commonly occur soon after using sumatriptan. Only rarely are these signs of a serious condition. However, you may not be able to tell it apart from a serious reaction due to a lack of blood flow to the heart, brain, or other parts of the body. Get medical help right away if you have any very serious side effects, including: chest pain, jaw/left arm pain, fainting, fast/irregular/pounding heartbeat, vision changes, weakness on one side of the body, confusion, slurred speech, sudden or severe stomach/abdominal pain, bloody diarrhea, change in the amount of urine.

This medication may increase serotonin and rarely cause a very serious condition called serotonin syndrome/toxicity. The risk increases if you are also taking other drugs that increase serotonin, so tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the drugs you take (see Drug Interactions section). Get medical help right away if you develop some of the following symptoms: fast heartbeat, hallucinations, loss of coordination, severe dizziness, severe nausea/vomiting/diarrhea, twitching muscles, unexplained fever, unusual agitation/restlessness.

A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, get medical help right away if you notice any symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, including: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.

This is not a complete list of possible side effects. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

In the US -

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

In Canada - Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to Health Canada at 1-866-234-2345.

Read the entire patient information overview for Imitrex (Sumatriptan Succinate)

What is Prescribing information?

The FDA package insert formatted in easy-to-find categories for health professionals and clinicians.

Imitrex FDA Prescribing Information: Side Effects
(Adverse Reactions)


The following serious adverse reactions are described below and elsewhere in the labeling:

Clinical Trials Experience

Because clinical trials are conducted under widely varying conditions, adverse reaction rates observed in the clinical trials of a drug cannot be directly compared with rates in the clinical trials of another drug and may not reflect the rates observed in practice.

Migraine Headache

Table 1 lists adverse reactions that occurred in 2 US placebo-controlled clinical trials in migraine patients (Studies 2 and 3) following either a single 6-mg dose of IMITREX Injection or placebo. Only reactions that occurred at a frequency of 2% or more in groups treated with IMITREX Injection 6 mg and that occurred at a frequency greater than the placebo group are included in Table 1.

Table 1. Adverse Reactions in Pooled Placebo-Controlled Trials in Patients with Migraine (Studies 2 and 3)

  IMITREX Injection 6 mg Subcutaneous
(n = 547) %
(n = 370) %
Atypical sensations 42 9
  Tingling 14 3
  Warm/hot sensation 11 4
  Burning sensation 7 < 1
  Feeling of heaviness 7 1
  Pressure sensation 7 2
  Feeling of tightness 5 < 1
  Numbness 5 2
  Feeling strange 2 < 1
  Tight feeling in head 2 < 1
  Flushing 7 2
  Chest discomfort 5 1
  Tightness in chest 3 < 1
  Pressure in chest 2 < 1
 Ear, nose, and throat
  Throat discomfort 3 < 1
  Discomfort: nasal cavity/sinuses 2 < 1
Injection site reactiona 59 24
  Jaw discomfort 2 0
  Weakness 5 < 1
  Neck pain/stiffness 5 < 1
  Myalgia 2 < 1
  Dizziness/vertigo 12 4
  Drowsiness/sedation 3 2
  Headache 2 < 1
  Sweating 2 1
aIncludes injection site pain, stinging/burning, swelling, erythema, bruising, bleeding.

The incidence of adverse reactions in controlled clinical trials was not affected by gender or age of the patients. There were insufficient data to assess the impact of race on the incidence of adverse reactions.

Cluster Headache

In the controlled clinical trials assessing the efficacy of IMITREX Injection as a treatment for cluster headache (Studies 4 and 5), no new significant adverse reactions were detected that had not already been identified in trials of IMITREX in patients with migraine.

Overall, the frequency of adverse reactions reported in the trials of cluster headache was generally lower than in the migraine trials. Exceptions include reports of paresthesia (5% IMITREX, 0% placebo), nausea and vomiting (4% IMITREX, 0% placebo), and bronchospasm (1% IMITREX, 0% placebo).

Postmarketing Experience

The following adverse reactions have been identified during postapproval use of IMITREX Tablets, IMITREX Nasal Spray, and IMITREX Injection. Because these reactions are reported voluntarily from a population of uncertain size, it is not always possible to reliably estimate their frequency or establish a causal relationship to drug exposure.


Hypotension, palpitations.


Dystonia, tremor.

Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Imitrex (Sumatriptan Succinate)

Imitrex - User Reviews

Imitrex User Reviews

Now you can gain knowledge and insight about a drug treatment with Patient Discussions.

Here is a collection of user reviews for the medication Imitrex sorted by most helpful. Patient Discussions FAQs

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration


You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

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