Prescription Drug Information: Rizatriptan

RIZATRIPTAN — rizatriptan benzoate tablet, film coated
Macleods Pharmaceuticals Limited


Rizatriptan benzoate tablets are indicated for the acute treatment of migraine with or without aura in adults and in pediatric patients 6 to 17 years old.

Limitations of Use
• Rizatriptan benzoate tablets should only be used where a clear diagnosis of migraine has been established. If a patient has no response for the first migraine attack treated with rizatriptan benzoate tablets, the diagnosis of migraine should be reconsidered before rizatriptan benzoate tablets are administered to treat any subsequent attacks.
• Rizatriptan benzoate tablets are not indicated for use in the management of hemiplegic or basilar migraine [see Contraindications (4)].
• Rizatriptan benzoate tablets are not indicated for the prevention of migraine attacks.
• Safety and effectiveness of rizatriptan benzoate tablets have not been established for cluster headache.


2.1 Dosing Information in Adults

The recommended starting dose of rizatriptan benzoate tablets is either 5 mg or 10 mg for the acute treatment of migraines in adults. The 10-mg dose may provide a greater effect than the 5-mg dose, but may have a greater risk of adverse reactions [see Clinical Studies (14.1)].
Redosing in Adults
Although the effectiveness of a second dose or subsequent doses has not been established in placebo-controlled trials, if the migraine headache returns, a second dose may be administered 2 hours after the first dose. The maximum daily dose should not exceed 30 mg in any 24-hour period. The safety of treating, on average, more than four headaches in a 30-day period has not been established.

2.2 Dosing Information in Pediatric Patients (Age 6 to 17 Years)

Dosing in pediatric patients is based on the patient’s body weight. The recommended dose of rizatriptan benzoate tablets is 5-mg in patients weighing less than 40 kg (88 lb), and 10 mg in patients weighing 40 kg (88 lb) or more.
The efficacy and safety of treatment with more than one dose of rizatriptan benzoate tablets within 24 hours in pediatric patients 6 to 17 years of age have not been established.

2.4 Dosage Adjustment for Patients on Propranolol

Adult Patients
In adult patients taking propranolol, only the 5-mg dose of rizatriptan benzoate tablets is recommended, up to a maximum of 3 doses in any 24-hour period (15 mg) [see Drug Interactions (7.1) and Clinical Pharmacology (12.3)].

Pediatric Patients
For pediatric patients weighing 40 kg (88 lb) or more, taking propranolol, only a single 5-mg dose of rizatriptan benzoate tablets is recommended (maximum dose of 5 mg in a 24-hour period). Rizatriptan benzoate tablets should not be prescribed to propranolol-treated pediatric patients who weigh less than 40 kg (88 lb) [see Drug Interactions (7.1) and Clinical Pharmacology (12.3)].


Rizatriptan Benzoate Tablets, USP:
• The 5 mg tablets are pale pink, capsule-shaped, compressed tablets debossed with ‘CL 33’ on one side and plain on the other
• The 10 mg tablets are pale pink, capsule-shaped, compressed tablets debossed “CL 34” on one side and plain on the other


Rizatriptan benzoate tablets are contraindicated in patients with:
• Ischemic coronary artery disease (angina pectoris, history of myocardial infarction, or documented silent ischemia), or other significant underlying cardiovascular disease [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1)].
• Coronary artery vasospasm including Prinzmetal’s angina [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1)].
• History of stroke or transient ischemic attack (TIA) [see Warnings and Precautions (5.4)].
• Peripheral vascular disease (PVD) [see Warnings and Precautions (5.5)].
• Ischemic bowel disease [see Warnings and Precautions (5.5)].
• Uncontrolled hypertension [see Warnings and Precautions (5.8)].
• Recent use (i.e., within 24 hours) of another 5-HT1 agonist, ergotamine-containing medication, or ergot-type medication (such as dihydroergotamine or methysergide) [see Drug Interactions (7.2 and 7.3)].
• Hemiplegic or basilar migraine [see Indications and Usage (1)]..
• Concurrent administration or recent discontinuation (i.e., within 2 weeks) of a MAO-A inhibitor [see Drug Interactions (7.5) and Clinical Pharmacology (12.3)].
• Hypersensitivity to rizatriptan or any of the excipients (angioedema and anaphylaxis seen) [see Adverse Reactions (6.2)].


5.1 Myocardial Ischemia, Myocardial Infarction, and Prinzmetal’s Angina

Rizatriptan benzoate should not be given to patients with ischemic or vasospastic coronary artery disease. There have been rare reports of serious cardiac adverse reactions, including acute myocardial infarction, occurring within a few hours following administration of rizatriptan benzoate. Some of these reactions occurred in patients without known coronary artery disease (CAD). 5-HT1 agonists, including rizatriptan benzoate may cause coronary artery vasospasm (Prinzmetal’s Angina), even in patients without a history of CAD.

Triptan-naïve patients who have multiple cardiovascular risk factors (e.g., increased age, diabetes, hypertension, smoking, obesity, strong family history of CAD) should have a cardiovascular evaluation prior to receiving rizatriptan benzoate. If there is evidence of CAD or coronary artery vasospasm, rizatriptan benzoate should not be administered [see Contraindications (4)]. For patients who have a negative cardiovascular evaluation, consideration should be given to administration of the first rizatriptan benzoate dose in a medically-supervised setting and performing an electrocardiogram (ECG) immediately following rizatriptan benzoate administration. Periodic cardiovascular evaluation should be considered in intermittent long-term users of rizatriptan benzoate who have cardiovascular risk factors.

5.2 Arrhythmias

Life-threatening disturbances of cardiac rhythm, including ventricular tachycardia and ventricular fibrillation leading to death, have been reported within a few hours following the administration of 5-HT1 agonists. Discontinue rizatriptan benzoate if these disturbances occur.

5.3 Chest, Throat, Neck and/or Jaw Pain/Tightness/Pressure

As with other 5-HT1 agonists, sensations of tightness, pain, pressure, and heaviness in the precordium, throat, neck and jaw commonly occur after treatment with rizatriptan benzoate and are usually non-cardiac in origin. However, if a cardiac origin is suspected, patients should be evaluated. Patients shown to have CAD and those with Prinzmetal’s variant angina should not receive 5-HT1 agonists.

5.4 Cerebrovascular Events

Cerebral hemorrhage, subarachnoid hemorrhage, and stroke have occurred in patients treated with 5-HT1 agonists, and some have resulted in fatalities. In a number of cases, it appears possible that the cerebrovascular events were primary, the 5-HT1 agonist having been administered in the incorrect belief that the symptoms experienced were a consequence of migraine, when they were not. Also, patients with migraine may be at increased risk of certain cerebrovascular events (e.g., stroke, hemorrhage, transient ischemic attack). Discontinue rizatriptan benzoate if a cerebrovascular event occurs.

As with other acute migraine therapies, before treating headaches in patients not previously diagnosed as migraineurs, and in migraineurs who present with atypical symptoms, care should be taken to exclude other potentially serious neurological conditions. Rizatriptan benzoate should not be administered to patients with a history of stroke or transient ischemic attack [see Contraindications (4)].

5.5 Other Vasospasm Reactions

5-HT1 agonists, including rizatriptan benzoate, may cause non-coronary vasospastic reactions, such as peripheral vascular ischemia, gastrointestinal vascular ischemia and infarction (presenting with abdominal pain and bloody diarrhea), splenic infarction, and Raynaud’s syndrome. In patients who experience symptoms or signs suggestive of non-coronary vasospasm reaction following the use of any 5-HT1 agonist, the suspected vasospasm reaction should be ruled out before receiving additional rizatriptan benzoate doses.

Reports of transient and permanent blindness and significant partial vision loss have been reported with the use of 5-HT1 agonists. Since visual disorders may be part of a migraine attack, a causal relationship between these events and the use of 5-HT1 agonists have not been clearly established.

5.6 Medication Overuse Headache

Overuse of acute migraine drugs (e.g., ergotamine, triptans, opioids, or a combination of drugs for 10 or more days per month) may lead to exacerbation of headache (medication overuse headache). Medication overuse headache may present as migraine-like daily headaches, or as a marked increase in frequency of migraine attacks. Detoxification of patients, including withdrawal of the overused drugs, and treatment of withdrawal symptoms (which often includes a transient worsening of headache) may be necessary.

5.7 Serotonin Syndrome

Serotonin syndrome may occur with triptans, including rizatriptan benzoate particularly during co-administration with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), serotonin norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs), tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs), and MAO inhibitors [see Drug Interactions (7.5)]. Serotonin syndrome symptoms may include mental status changes (e.g., agitation, hallucinations, coma), autonomic instability (e.g., tachycardia, labile blood pressure, hyperthermia), neuromuscular aberrations (e.g., hyperreflexia, incoordination) and/or gastrointestinal symptoms (e.g., nausea, vomiting, diarrhea). The onset of symptoms can occur within minutes to hours of receiving a new or a greater dose of a serotonergic medication. Rizatriptan benzoate treatment should be discontinued if serotonin syndrome is suspected [see Drug Interactions (7.4) and Patient Counseling Information (17)].

5.8 Increase in Blood Pressure

Significant elevation in blood pressure, including hypertensive crisis with acute impairment of organ systems, has been reported on rare occasions in patients with and without a history of hypertension receiving 5-HT1 agonists, including rizatriptan benzoate. In healthy young adult male and female patients who received maximal doses of rizatriptan benzoate (10 mg every 2 hours for 3 doses), slight increases in blood pressure (approximately 2-3 mmHg) were observed. Rizatriptan benzoate is contraindicated in patients with uncontrolled hypertension [see Contraindications (4)].


The following adverse reactions are discussed in more detail in other sections of the labeling:
• Myocardial Ischemia, Myocardial Infarction, and Prinzmetal’s Angina [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1)].
• Arrhythmias [see Warnings and Precautions (5.2)].
• Chest, Throat, Neck and/or Jaw Pain/Tightness/Pressure [see Warnings and Precautions (5.3)].
• Cerebrovascular Events [see Warnings and Precautions (5.4)].
• Other Vasospasm Reactions [see Warnings and Precautions (5.5)].
• Medication Overuse Headache [see Warnings and Precautions (5.6)].
• Serotonin Syndrome [see Warnings and Precautions (5.7)].
• Increase in Blood Pressure [see Warnings and Precautions (5.8)]. provides trustworthy package insert and label information about marketed prescription drugs as submitted by manufacturers to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Package information is not reviewed or updated separately by Every individual prescription drug label and package insert entry contains a unique identifier which can be used to secure further details directly from the U.S. National Institutes of Health and/or the FDA.

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