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Side Effects

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:

Less common

  • Abdominal or stomach pain
  • Anxiety
  • Blurred vision
  • Changes in patterns and rhythms of speech
  • Chest pain or tightness
  • Chills
  • Cold sweats
  • Coma
  • Confusion
  • Constipation
  • Cool, pale skin
  • Cough
  • Decrease in the amount of urine
  • Depressed mood
  • Difficult or labored breathing
  • Dizziness
  • Dizziness, faintness, or lightheadedness when getting up suddenly from a lying or sitting position
  • Dry mouth
  • Dry skin and hair
  • Extreme thirst
  • Fainting
  • Fast, slow, irregular, pounding, or racing heartbeat or pulse
  • Feeling cold
  • Fever
  • Flushed, dry skin fruit-like breath odor
  • Hair loss
  • Headache
  • Hoarseness or husky voice
  • Increased hunger
  • Increased thirst
  • Increased urination
  • Muscle cramps and stiffness
  • Nausea
  • Neck, throat, or jaw pain
  • Nervousness
  • Nightmares
  • Noisy, rattling breathing
  • Paleness of the skin
  • Pounding in the ears
  • Seizures
  • Shakiness
  • Shivering
  • Shortness of breath
  • Slurred speech
  • Sweating
  • Swelling of the fingers, hands, feet, or lower legs
  • Tightness in the chest
  • Trouble with speaking
  • Troubled breathing
  • Troubled breathing at rest
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Unusual tiredness or weakness
  • Uterine bleeding between menstrual periods
  • Vomiting
  • Weight gain
  • Wheezing


  • Arm, back, or jaw pain
  • Blindness
  • Blood in the eye
  • Blood in the urine
  • Bloody, black, or tarry stools
  • Burning, dry, or itching eyes
  • Chest pain or discomfort
  • Chest tightness or heaviness
  • Collection of blood under the skin
  • Convulsions
  • Cough producing mucus
  • Deep, dark purple bruise
  • Discharge, excessive tearing
  • Eye redness, irritation, or pain
  • Feeling of warmth or heat
  • Flushing or redness of the skin, especially on the face and neck
  • Inability to move the eyes
  • Increased blinking or spasms of the eyelid
  • Increased frequency of urination
  • Increased need to urinate
  • Itching, pain, redness, or swelling
  • Lightheadedness, dizziness, or fainting
  • Nerve pain
  • Pain or burning during urination
  • Passing urine more often
  • Redness in the whites of eyes
  • Redness, pain, or swelling of the eye, eyelid, or inner lining of the eyelid
  • Severe numbness, especially on one side of the face or body
  • Severe or continuing stomach pain
  • Sticking out of the tongue
  • Swelling of the eye
  • Swollen, painful, or tender lymph glands in the neck, armpit, or groin
  • Tenderness, pain, swelling, warmth, skin discoloration, and prominent superficial veins over the affected area
  • Trouble with breathing, speaking, or swallowing
  • Troubled breathing with exertion
  • Twitching
  • Uncontrolled twisting movements of the neck, trunk, arms, or legs
  • Unusual bleeding or bruising
  • Unusual facial expressions
  • Vomiting of blood or material that looks like coffee grounds
  • Weakness of the arms and legs

Incidence not known

  • Agitation
  • Back, leg, or stomach pains
  • Bleeding gums
  • Bluish color of the fingernails, lips, skin, palms, or nail beds
  • Changes in skin color
  • Changes in vision
  • Coma
  • Decreased urine output
  • Diarrhea
  • Double vision
  • Flushing or redness of the skin
  • General body swelling
  • Headache, sudden, severe, and continuing
  • High fever
  • Hives
  • Hostility
  • Inability to speak
  • Irritability
  • Itching
  • Large, hive-like swelling on the face, eyelids, lips, tongue, throat, hands, legs, feet, or sex organs
  • Lethargy
  • Loss of ability to use or understand speech or language
  • Loss of appetite
  • Loss of vision
  • Migraine headache
  • Muscle twitching
  • Noisy breathing
  • Nosebleeds
  • Overactive reflexes
  • Pain, tenderness, or swelling of the foot or leg
  • Pinpoint red spots on the skin
  • Poor coordination
  • Puffiness or swelling of the eyelids or around the eyes, face, lips, or tongue
  • Rapid weight gain
  • Rectal bleeding
  • Redness, soreness, or itching skin
  • Restlessness
  • Seizures
  • Severe or sudden headache
  • Skin rash
  • Sore throat
  • Sores, ulcers, or white spots on the lips or in the mouth
  • Sores, welting, or blisters
  • Stupor
  • Swelling of the face, ankles, hands, feet, or lower legs
  • Swollen glands
  • Talking or acting with excitement you cannot control
  • Temporary blindness
  • Trembling or shaking
  • Unexplained bleeding or bruising
  • Unusually warm skin
  • Weakness in the arm or leg on one side of the body, sudden and severe
  • Weight loss
  • Yellowing of the eyes or skin

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

Less common

  • Burning, crawling, itching, numbness, prickling, “pins and needles”, or tingling feelings
  • Change in color vision
  • Change in hearing
  • Continuing ringing or buzzing or other unexplained noise in the ears
  • Difficulty seeing at night
  • Difficulty with concentrating
  • Difficulty with moving
  • Disturbance of smell
  • Drowsiness
  • Ear drainage
  • Earache
  • False or unusual sense of well-being
  • Feeling of constant movement of self or surroundings
  • Flushing or redness of the skin
  • General feeling of discomfort or illness
  • Hearing loss
  • Heartburn
  • Heavy bleeding
  • Increased sensitivity of the eyes to sunlight
  • Itching ears
  • Itching skin
  • Joint pain
  • Lack of coordination
  • Loss of hearing
  • Muscle aching or cramping
  • Muscle stiffness or tightness
  • Pain or tenderness around the eyes and cheekbones
  • Sensation of spinning
  • Sensitivity to heat
  • Sleepiness
  • Stuffy or runny nose
  • Swollen joints
  • Tearing of the eyes
  • Tenderness of the skin and breasts
  • Thirst
  • Trouble with sleeping
  • Unexpected or excess milk flow from breasts
  • Unexplained runny nose or sneezing
  • Unusually warm skin
  • Weight gain or loss


  • Abnormal growth filled with fluid or semisolid material
  • Acid or sour stomach
  • Aggressiveness
  • Agitation
  • Anxiety
  • Bad unusual or unpleasant (after) taste
  • Belching
  • Bigger, dilated, or enlarged pupils (black part of the eye)
  • Blurred or loss of vision
  • Bruise
  • Change in personality
  • Change in taste
  • Changes in speech
  • Clear or bloody discharge from the nipple
  • Decreased appetite
  • Dimpling of breast skin
  • Disturbed color perception
  • Double vision
  • Dry or scaly skin
  • Dry, flaky, scaling skin on the scalp, eyebrows, near the ears, and around the nose
  • Feeling halos around lights
  • Fluid or liquid from the nipple
  • Full or bloated
  • Heartburn
  • Hiccups
  • Hunger
  • Increased alertness
  • Increased sensitivity of the eyes to light
  • Increased sensitivity to pain
  • Increased sensitivity to touch
  • Increased watering of the mouth
  • Indigestion
  • Inverted nipple
  • Lack of feeling or emotion
  • Loss of appetite
  • Lump in the breast or under the arm
  • Mouth or tooth pain
  • Night blindness
  • Numbness, pain, tingling, or weakness
  • Overbright appearance of lights
  • Persistent crusting or scaling of the nipple
  • Pressure in the stomach
  • Red, sore eyes
  • Redness or swelling of the breast
  • Seeing, hearing, or feeling things that are not there
  • Skin rash, encrusted, scaly and oozing
  • Small lumps under the skin
  • Sore on the skin of the breast that does not heal
  • Stomach discomfort, upset, or pain
  • Swelling of the abdominal or stomach area
  • Swelling of the breasts
  • Swelling of the salivary glands
  • Tightness of the skin
  • Tingling in the hands and feet
  • Tunnel vision
  • Uncaring
  • Weakness
  • Wrinkled skin

Incidence not known

  • Deafness
  • Panic
  • Severe sunburn

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

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

Proper Use

Do not use this medicine for a headache that is different from your usual migraines. Instead, check with your doctor.

To relieve your migraine as soon as possible, use this medicine as soon as the headache pain begins. Even if you get warning signals of a coming migraine (an aura), you should wait until the headache pain starts before using sumatriptan. Using sumatriptan during the aura probably will not prevent the headache from occurring. However, even if you do not use sumatriptan until your migraine has been present for several hours, the medicine will still work.

Lying down in a quiet, dark room for a while after you use this medicine may help relieve your migraine.

If you feel much better after a dose of sumatriptan, but your headache comes back or gets worse after a while, wait at least 2 hours before taking another dose. However, use this medicine only as directed by your doctor. Do not use more of it, and do not use it more often, than directed. Using too much sumatriptan may increase the chance of side effects. Do not take more than 200 mg in 24 hours.

You may take the tablet with or without food. Swallow the tablet whole with water or other liquids. Do not break, crush, or chew it.

This medicine comes with a patient information leaflet. Read and follow the instructions carefully. Ask your doctor if you have any questions.


The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor’s orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

  • For oral dosage form (tablets):
    • For migraine headaches:
      • Adults—25, 50, or 100 milligrams (mg) as a single dose. If you get some relief, or if the migraine comes back after being relieved, another dose may be taken 2 hours after the last dose. Do not take more than 200 mg in any 24-hour period.
      • Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.


Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.

Keep out of the reach of children.

Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.

Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.

Before Using

In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For this medicine, the following should be considered:


Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to this medicine or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.


Appropriate studies have not been performed on the relationship of age to the effects of sumatriptan in the pediatric population. Safety and efficacy have not been established.


Use of sumatriptan is not recommended in elderly patients with kidney problems, heart or blood vessel disease, or high blood pressure, and should not be used by elderly patients with liver problems.


Pregnancy Category Explanation
All Trimesters C Animal studies have shown an adverse effect and there are no adequate studies in pregnant women OR no animal studies have been conducted and there are no adequate studies in pregnant women.


Studies in women suggest that this medication poses minimal risk to the infant when used during breastfeeding.

Drug Interactions

Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are taking this medicine, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines is not recommended. Your doctor may decide not to treat you with this medication or change some of the other medicines you take.

  • Almotriptan
  • Dihydroergotamine
  • Eletriptan
  • Ergoloid Mesylates
  • Ergonovine
  • Ergotamine
  • Frovatriptan
  • Isocarboxazid
  • Linezolid
  • Methylergonovine
  • Methysergide
  • Naratriptan
  • Phenelzine
  • Procarbazine
  • Rizatriptan
  • Tranylcypromine
  • Zolmitriptan

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Citalopram
  • Desvenlafaxine
  • Dexfenfluramine
  • Duloxetine
  • Escitalopram
  • Fluoxetine
  • Fluvoxamine
  • Milnacipran
  • Paroxetine
  • Reboxetine
  • Sertraline
  • Sibutramine
  • St John’s Wort
  • Tapentadol
  • Venlafaxine
  • Vilazodone

Other Interactions

Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Other Medical Problems

The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of this medicine. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Bleeding problems or
  • Blurred vision or
  • CNS disorders or
  • Kidney disease or
  • Liver disease or
  • Seizures or epilepsy, history of or
  • Stomach or intestinal bleeding—Use with caution. May make these conditions worse.
  • Cerebrovascular disease (e.g., stroke, transient ischemic attack), or history of or
  • Heart attack, history of or
  • Heart disease (e.g., angina) or
  • Hemiplegic or basilar types of migraine or
  • Hypertension (high blood pressure), uncontrolled or
  • Ischemic bowel disease or
  • Liver disease, severe—Should not be used in patients with these conditions.
  • Coronary artery disease, history of or
  • Diabetes or
  • Hypercholesterolemia (high cholesterol in the blood) or
  • Hypertension (high blood pressure), controlled or
  • Obesity or
  • Raynaud’s syndrome—Use with caution. The chance of side effects may be increased. Heart or blood vessel disease sometimes do not cause any symptoms, so some people do not know that they have these problems. Before deciding whether you should use this medicine, your doctor may need to do some tests to make sure that you do not have any of these conditions.


Sumatriptan is used to treat acute migraine attacks in adults. It does not prevent migraine attacks nor treat certain types of migraine headaches (e.g., hemiplegic or basilar type).

Many people find that their headaches go away completely after they take sumatriptan. Other people find that their headaches are much less painful, and that they are able to go back to their normal activities even though their headaches are not completely gone. Sumatriptan often relieves other symptoms that occur together with a migraine headache, such as nausea, vomiting, sensitivity to light, and sensitivity to sound.

Sumatriptan is not an ordinary pain reliever. It will not relieve any kind of pain other than migraine headaches. This medicine is usually used for people whose headaches are not relieved by acetaminophen, aspirin, or other pain relievers.

Sumatriptan has caused serious side effects in some people, especially people who have heart or blood vessel disease. Be sure that you discuss with your doctor the risks of using this medicine as well as the good that it can do.

This medicine is available only with your doctor’s prescription.