People with migraines or cluster headaches may be able to reduce symptoms by using Alsuma when one of these headaches starts. This prescription medicine works by constricting the blood vessels in the head, which may become dilated when a migraine or cluster headache occurs. It can help relieve nausea, vision changes, and other problems these headaches may cause.
What Is Alsuma Used For?Alsuma™ (sumatriptan) is a prescription cluster headache and migraine medication. It is used to treat the symptoms of these types of headaches, and is given as an injection just below the skin (subcutaneously). Like other triptan medications, it is not used to prevent headaches.
Using Alsuma for Cluster Headaches
Cluster headaches are known for their extreme pain and their pattern of occurring in "clusters," usually at the same time(s) of the day for several weeks. Cluster headaches may begin as a minor pain or pressure around one eye or temple. They may also begin as a burning sensation on the nose.
The pain quickly intensifies over several minutes, eventually spreading to that side of the face. A cluster headache is often described as constant, deep, excruciating pain, although occasionally it may be pulsing and throbbing. The pain is always on one side of the head.
The intense pain of a cluster headache often compels the victim to pace the floor or rock in a chair. This differs from a migraine attack, where the person wants to curl up into bed and be still.
Other symptoms of a cluster headache may include:
- Stuffed and runny nose
- Droopy eyelid
- Sweating forehead
- Pale appearance
- Red, tearing eye
Alsuma is approved to treat, but not prevent, cluster headaches.