Sumavel is a prescription drug used for the treatment of migraine headaches and cluster headaches. This medication comes in the form of an injection, although it uses a needle-free system that utilizes pressure instead. Although most people tolerate this medication well, possible side effects include dizziness and skin reactions at the injection site.
What Is Sumavel?
Sumavel™ DosePro™ (sumatriptan injection) is a prescription medication approved for treating migraine headaches and cluster headaches. It is a unique form of this medication, injected just under the skin using a needle-free system, which uses pressure instead of needles.
Sumavel is made by Patheon UK, Ltd., for Zogenix, Inc.
How Does It Work?
Sumavel belongs to a class of migraine medications called 5-HT agonists -- more commonly known as "triptans." During a migraine or cluster headache, some of the blood vessels in the head become dilated (opened wider than they usually are). Sumavel works by narrowing these blood vessels, helping them return to their normal state. This action helps to relieve cluster headache or migraine symptoms.
Studies have shown that sumatriptan injection medications like Sumavel can relieve the pain of both migraines and cluster headaches. In one study, a sumatriptan injection was compared with a placebo injection (an injection with no active ingredient). After one hour, 70 percent of people who had taken sumatriptan experienced migraine pain relief, compared to only 18 percent of people who had taken the placebo. Similar results were seen for cluster headaches as well.
Written by/reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;Arthur Schoenstadt, MD
Last reviewed by: KristiMonson, PharmD;
List of references (click here):
Sumavel [package insert]. San Diego, CA: Zogenix, Inc.;2009 July.
Food and Drug Administration, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. Electronic orange book: approved drug products with therapeutic equivalence evaluations. FDA Web site. Available at: http://www.fda.gov/cder/ob/. Accessed January 5, 2010.
Briggs GG, Freeman RK, Yaffe SJ. Drugs in Pregnancy and Lactation. 8th ed. Philadelphia (PA): Lippincott Williams & Wilkins;2008.
National Library of Medicine (US). Drugs and Lactation Database (LactMED). NLM Web site. Available at: http://toxnet.nlm.nih.gov/cgi-bin/sis/htmlgen?LACT. Accessed January 6, 2010.
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