Last reviewed on RxList: 1/14/2005
Sansert Side Effects Center

Medical Editor: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP

Last reviewed on RxList 4/12/2016

Sansert (methysergide maleate) is an anti-migraine medication used to prevent vascular headaches (e.g., migraines) and to reduce their severity. The brand name Sansert is discontinued, but generic versions may be available. Common side effects of Sansert (methysergide maleate) include:

  • nausea
  • vomiting
  • heartburn
  • abdominal pain
  • diarrhea
  • constipation
  • drowsiness
  • dizziness
  • lightheadedness
  • weakness
  • poor coordination
  • insomnia
  • rash
  • facial flushing
  • weight gain or loss
  • muscle or joint aches or discomfort
  • general feeling of being unwell (malaise)
  • fatigue
  • backache
  • fever
  • urinary problems
  • leg pain or swelling
  • shortness of breath
  • numbness or cold feeling in the extremities, or
  • hair loss

The usual adult dose of Sansert is 4-8 mg daily, given with meals. Sansert may interact with other migraine headache medicines, beta-blockers, and nicotine. Tell your doctor all medications and supplements you use. Sansert is not recommended for use during pregnancy. It causes birth defects and also can induce uterine contractions and harm the baby. This drug passes into breast milk and can cause vomiting and diarrhea in a nursing infant. Do not take Sansert while breastfeeding.

Our Sansert (methysergide maleate) 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.


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Sansert Professional Information


Within the recommended dose levels, the following side effects have been reported:

1) Fibrotic Complications

Fibrotic changes have been observed in the retroperitoneal, pleuropulmonary, cardiac, and other tissues, either singly or, very rarely, in combination.

Retroperitoneal Fibrosis

This nonspecific fibrotic process is usually confined to the retroperitoneal connective tissue above the pelvic brim and may present clinically with one or more symptoms such as general malaise, fatigue, weight loss, backache, low grade fever (elevated sedimentation rate), urinary obstruction (girdle or flank pain, dysuria, polyuria, oliguria, elevated BUN), vascular insufficiency of the lower limbs (leg pain, Leriche syndrome, edema of legs, thrombophlebitis). The single most useful diagnostic procedure in suspected cases of retroperitoneal fibrosis is intravenous pyelography. Typical deviation and obstruction of one or both ureters may be observed.

Pleuropulmonary Complications

A similar nonspecific fibrotic process, limited to the pleural and immediately subjacent pulmonary tissues, usually presents clinically with dyspnea, tightness and pain in the chest, pleural friction rubs, and pleural effusion. These findings may be confirmed by chest X-ray.

Cardiac Complications

Nonrheumatic fibrotic thickenings of the aortic root and of the aortic and mitral valves usually present clinically with cardiac murmurs and dyspnea.

Other Fibrotic Complications

Several cases of fibrotic plaques, simulating Peyronies Disease have been described.

2) Cardiovascular Complications

Encroachment of retroperitoneal fibrosis on the aorta, inferior vena cava and their common iliac branches may result in vascular insufficiency of the lower limbs, the presenting features of which are mentioned under Retroperitoneal Fibrosis.

Intrinsic vasoconstriction of large and small arteries, involving one or more vessels or merely a segment of a vessel, may occur at any stage of therapy. Depending on the vessel involved, this complication may present with chest pain, abdominal pain, or cold, numb, painful extremities with or without paresthesias and diminished or absent pulses. Progression to ischemic tissue damage has rarely been reported. Prompt withdrawal of the drug at the first signs of impaired circulation is recommended (see WARNINGS) to obviate such effects.

Postural hypotension and tachycardia have also been observed.

3) Gastrointestinal Symptoms

Nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, heartburn, abdominal pain. These effects tend to appear early and can frequently be obviated by gradual introduction of the medication and by administration of the drug with meals. Constipation and elevation of gastric HCl have also been reported.

4) CNS Symptoms

Seizure, insomnia, drowsiness, mild euphoria, dizziness, ataxia, lightheadedness, hyperesthesia, unworldly feelings (described variously as "dissociation", "hallucinatory experiences", etc.). Some of these symptoms may be associated with vascular headaches, per se, and may, therefore, be unrelated to the drug.

5) Dermatological Manifestations

Facial flush, telangiectasia, and nonspecific rashes have rarely been reported. Increased hair loss may occur, but in many instances the tendency has abated despite continued therapy.

6) Edema

Peripheral edema, and, more rarely, localized brawny edema may occur. Dependent edema has responded to lowered doses, salt restriction, or diuretics.

7) Weight Gain

Weight gain may be a reason to caution patients regarding their caloric intake.

8) Hematological Manifestations

Neutropenia, eosinophilia, and thrombocytopenia.

9) Miscellaneous

Weakness, arthralgia, myalgia, fever, and mydriasis.

Read the entire FDA prescribing information for Sansert (Methysergide maleate)


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© Sansert Patient Information is supplied by Cerner Multum, Inc. and Sansert Consumer information is supplied by First Databank, Inc., used under license and subject to their respective copyrights.

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