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Brand Name: Maxalt® and Maxalt-MLT
Active Ingredient:   rizatriptan benzoate
Strength(s): 5 mg and 10 mg
Dosage Form(s):   Tablets and Orally Disintegrating Tablets
Company Name:    Merck & Co., Inc.
Availability:         Prescription only
*Date Approved by FDA:   June 29, 1998
*Approval by the FDA does not mean that the drug is available for consumers at this time.

What is Maxalt used for?  Maxalt is used for the short term treatment of most types of migraine attacks in adults. Maxalt is not used to prevent migraines, or to decrease the number of migraine attacks. Maxalt has not been shown to treat cluster headaches.

Who should not take Maxalt? You should not take Maxalt if you have any of following conditions:

  • History of heart or circulatory disease, including heart attack, angina (chest pain), or stroke
  • Uncontrolled high blood pressure
  • You have taken other migraine medications that are in the same class as Maxalt, or medications containing ergotamine, dihydroergotamine, or methysergide within the past 24 hours
  • Hemiplegic or basilar migraine
  • Are currently taking monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors such as phenelzine or tranylcypromine, or have taken MAO inhibitors in the past 2 weeks
  • Phenylketonuric patients should not take Maxalt-MLT(orally disintegrating tablets), because they contain phenylalanine (a part of aspartame)

General Precautions with Maxalt:

If you have the following conditions, your health care provider will evaluate you to decide if Maxalt is right for you:

  • Risk factors for heart disease including, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes, smoking, strong family history of heart disease, or if you are postmenopausal, or a male over 40
  • Severe kidney disease
  • Moderate or severe liver disease

What are some possible side effects of Maxalt? (This is NOT a complete list of side effects reported with Maxalt. Your health care provider can discuss with you a more complete list of side effects.

Some signs of rare but serious side effects include:

  • Pain, pressure or tightness in the chest or throat. If severe, or does not go away, call your health care provider right away. If this happens at all, discuss with your health care provider before taking any more Maxalt.
  • Rarely, people have a serious allergic reaction to Maxalt. This could cause shortness of breath, wheeziness, heart throbbing, swelling of eyelids, face, or lips, or a skin rash, lumps or hives. If this happens, tell your health care provider right away.

Other side effects may include:

  • Chest heaviness, or pressure
  • Tiredness
  • Dizziness
  • Sleepiness

For more detailed information about Maxalt, ask your health care provider.

Revised: 7/25/00


Back to Drug Side Effects

source: FDA

last update: December 2004

This information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. You should not use this material to diagnose or treat a health condition or disease without consulting with your healthcare provider.
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