Generic Injectable Imitrex (Sumatriptan) Now Available

The generic version of Imitrex Injection (called sumatriptan) is now shipping in the US. I don’t know if it is available in other countries, nor do I know when/if the tablets will be available. I doubt all pharmacies have it in stock yet. I recommend calling your pharmacy before taking your prescription in.

From Par Phamaceutical’s press release:

Par Pharmaceutical Begins Shipment of Sumatriptan Injection
November 6, 2008 – Par Pharmaceutical Companies, Inc. today announced that it will begin shipping generic versions of Imitrex® Injection (sumatriptan succinate injection) 4mg and 6mg starter kits and 4mg and 6mg prefilled syringe cartridges to the trade immediately.  In addition, Par anticipates launching the 6mg vials early next year.

Migraine Abortives (Triptans) & Serotonin Syndrome

Migraine abortive drugs called triptans can cause the potentially serious serotonin syndrome in rare cases, according to a study in the May 15 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine. Serotonin syndrome is a known risk when combining antidepressants and triptans. The new study shows that triptans alone can cause serotonin syndrome.

Serotonin syndrome is most likely to happen when you first start taking the medication. It is very rare and, even if it does happen, the remedy is to stop taking the medication. According to Migraine Medications May Cause ‘Serotonin Syndrome’ in the Washington Post:

The average age for someone experiencing serotonin syndrome associated only with triptan therapy was 39.9 years, and the most common symptoms included tremor, stiffness, palpitations, high blood pressure and agitation, according to the study.

Five people required hospitalization, and two cases were classified as “life-threatening.” Four of the 11 cases cleared up within an hour of treatment.

“It’s very rare and not likely to happen,” said Soldin of serotonin syndrome. “And, you just need to stop taking the drugs when it does happen. If you’re taking these medications and you have strange muscular, mental or hyperactivity symptoms, contact your doctor.”

Not sure if you’re taking a triptan? The seven available are:

  • Imitrex or Imigran (sumatriptan)
  • Maxalt (rizatriptan)
  • Amerge or Naramig (naratriptan)
  • Zomig (zolmitriptan)
  • Relpax (eletriptan)
  • Axert or Almogran (almotriptan)
  • Frova or Migard (frovatriptan

Read more about serotonin syndrome in these posts: