- A Visual Guide to Migraine Headaches Slideshow
- Headache and Migraine Triggers Slideshow
- Take the Migraines Quiz
- What is sumatriptan nasal powder, and how does it work?
- What brand names are available for sumatriptan nasal powder?
- Is sumatriptan nasal powder available as a generic drug?
- Do I need a prescription for sumatriptan nasal powder?
- What are the uses for sumatriptan nasal powder?
- What are the side effects of sumatriptan nasal powder?
- What is the dosage for sumatriptan nasal powder?
- Which drugs or supplements interact with sumatriptan nasal powder?
- Is sumatriptan nasal powder safe to use during pregnancy or while breastfeeding?
- What else should I know about sumatriptan nasal powder?
What is sumatriptan nasal powder, and how does it work?
Other medications in this drug class include:
- naratriptan (Amerge)
- zolmitriptan (Zomig)
- rizatriptan (Maxalt)
- frovatriptan (Frova)
- eletriptan (Relpax)
- almotriptan (Axert)
Migraine headaches are believed to result from dilatation of blood vessels in the brain. Sumatriptan relieves a migraine by stimulating serotonin receptors in the brain, which cause the muscles surrounding the blood vessels in the brain to contract and narrow the blood vessels. At the same time, also it reduces transmission of pain signals by nerves to the brain. While it is very effective in relieving migraine headaches, it does not prevent or reduce the number of headaches. This drug is not used for treatment of other types of headache pain.
The FDA approved sumatriptan inhalation powder (Onzetra Xsail) in January, 2016.
Is sumatriptan nasal powder available as a generic drug?
- No, this drug is not available as a generic.
Do I need a prescription for sumatriptan nasal powder?
- Yes, a prescription is necessary for this migraine drug.
What are the uses for sumatriptan nasal powder?
- Sumatriptan nasal powder is used for the acute treatment of migraine headaches with or without an aura in adults.
What are the side effects of sumatriptan nasal powder?
Common side effects include:
- Abnormal taste
- Nasal discomfort
- Runny nose
- Common cold
- Other side effects include:
- Throat discomfort
Possible serious side effects include:
- Heart attack, chest pain (myocardial ischemia/infarction and Prinzmetal's angina)
- Abnormal heart beats
- Chest, throat, neck and/or jaw pain/tightness/pressure
- Vasospasm reactions
- Medication overuse headache (rebound headache)
- Serotonin syndrome
- Increase in blood pressure
- Stomach and intestinal problems (GI ischemia and infarction events, peripheral vasospastic reactions)
- Cerebral hemorrhage, subarachnoid hemorrhage, and stroke
Latest Migraine News
Daily Health News
What is the dosage for sumatriptan nasal powder?
- The recommended dosage for this drug is 2 nosepieces (22 mg) administered using the Xsail breath-powered delivery device.
- Two additional nosepieces may be used after 2 hours if the migraine headache has not resolved, or returns after some improvement.
- The maximum dose over a 24 hour period is 2 doses (44 mg or 4 nosepieces) or 1 dose of sumatriptan inhalation powder and 1 dose of another sumatriptan product, separated by at least 2 hours.
Which drugs or supplements interact with sumatriptan nasal powder?
- Monoamine oxidase inhibitors or MAOIs, for example, isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), tranylcypromine (Parnate), and procarbazine (Matulane), may reduce the breakdown of sumatriptan in the liver, leading to increased blood levels and side effects of sumatriptan.
- Combining sumatriptan with sibutramine (Meridia, which has been removed from the market), selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors or SSRIs, including fluoxetine (Prozac), citalopram (Celexa), paroxetine (Paxil), and sertraline (Zoloft) or serotonin and norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors, including venlafaxine (Effexor), duloxetine (Cymbalta), and desvenlafaxine (Pristiq) may increase the concentration of serotonin in the brain causing increased serotonin-related side effects.
- Administering a dose of sumatriptan within 24 hours of treatment with an ergot-containing medication (dihydroergotamine [Migranal], ergotamine [Methergine]) is contraindicated because such combinations increase the likelihood of spasm of arteries.
Is sumatriptan nasal powder safe to use during pregnancy or while breastfeeding?
What else should I know about sumatriptan nasal powder?
What preparations of sumatriptan nasal powder are available?
- Intranasal powder: 11 mg (capsule in disposable nosepiece)
Sumatriptan is available in the following forms:
- intranasal powder (Onzetra Xsail)
- intranasal spray (Imitrex Intranasal): 5mg, 20mg
- injection (Imitrex, Imitrex StatDose): 4 and 6mg/.05ml
- trandermal patch (Zecuity): 86 mg (6.5 over 4 hours)
- tablets: 25mg, 50mg, 100mg
How should I keep sumatriptan nasal powder stored?
- Sumatriptan intranasal powder should be stored at room temperature, between 20 C and 25 C (68 F and 77 F).
- The nosepiece should be used immediately after removing it from the foil pouch.
Subscribe to MedicineNet's General Health Newsletter
Onzetra Xsail (sumatriptan nasal powder) is a drug prescribed to treat migraine headaches in adults (with our without aura). Some common side effects include:
Multimedia: Slideshows, Images & Quizzes
Headaches Quiz: Learn About Headache Pain
If you're plagued with headaches, our Headaches Quiz may help you identify causes, triggers, symptoms, and treatments for...
12 Surprising Headache Triggers Tips
Painful headaches can ruin your productivity and quality of life. But what triggers headaches and migraines? Learn some...
Migraine or Headache? Migraine Symptoms, Triggers, Treatment
What does a migraine feel like? Discover the difference between headaches and migraines. Learn to spot migraine symptoms early,...
Migraine Headaches: 14 Non-Drug Treatments for Migraines
Learn about 14 non-drug treatments for migraines. Acupuncture, biofeedback and massage therapy are among this list of non-drug...
Pictures of Famous People Coping With Migraines
See how celebrities cope with the pain caused by migraines. Learn their methods used to prevent and relieve migraine pain....
Related Disease Conditions
Migraine headache is a type of headache associated with a sensitivity to light, smells, or sounds, eye pain, severe pounding on...
Headaches can be divided into two categories: primary headaches and secondary headaches. Migraine headaches, tension headaches,...
Abdominal Migraines in Children and Adults
Abdominal migraine in adults and children is a variant of migraine headaches. Abdominal migraine in children generally occurs in...
Headache Natural Home Remedies
Headaches are a common complaint for many people. There are many types of headaches such as migraine, tension, cluster, and the...
Treatment & Diagnosis
Medications & Supplements
Migraines and Headaches Resources
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
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.