Cafergot

Generic Name: Caffeine

  • What is Cafergot?

    Cafergot is prescribed for the prevention of vascular headaches, including migraine, migraine variants, or cluster headaches. It is available in tablet form and as rectal suppositories.

  • What is the most important information I should know about Cafergot?

    Do not take Cafergot with certain antiviral medications such as the HIV drugs ritonavir or atazanavir, or macrolide antibiotics such as azithromycin or erythromycin as the combination may cause a serious and/or life-threatening restriction of blood flow to the brain, arms, or legs.

    The excessive use of Cafergot can lead to ergot poisoning (symptoms include headache, pain in the legs when walking, muscle pain, numbness, coldness, and abnormal paleness of the fingers and toes). If this condition is not treated, it can lead to gangrene (tissue death due to decreased blood supply).

  • Who should not take Cafergot?

    Do not take Cafergot if you are allergic to ergotamine tartate, caffeine, any other similar medication, or to any of the ingredients in the Cafergot tablets.

    Do not take Cafergot if you have certain circulation or heart disorders, high blood pressure, kidney problems, liver problems, or sepsis.

    Do not take Carfergot if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.

  • What should I tell my doctor before I take the first dose of Cafergot?

    Tell your doctor about all prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal medications you are taking before beginning treatment with Cafergot. Also, talk to your doctor about your complete medical history, especially if you have coronary heart disease, circulatory problems, high blood pressure, liver or kidney problems, an infection, or if you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

  • What is the usual dosage?

    The information below is based on the dosage guidelines your doctor uses. Depending on your condition and medical history, your doctor may prescribe a different regimen. Do not change the dosage or stop taking your medication without your doctor's approval.

    Adults: The total daily dose for any single attack should not exceed 6 tablets or two suppositories. The total weekly dose should not exceed 10 tablets or five suppositories.

    A preventive, short-term dose may be given at bedtime to certain people, but only as prescribed by a doctor.

  • How should I take Cafergot?

    Cafergot is available in both tablet and suppository form. Cafergot works best if you use it at the first sign of a migraine attack and before the headache actually starts. If you experience nausea and vomiting during attacks, making it impossible to hold medication down, your doctor may prescribe rectal suppositories.

    To use the suppositories, follow these steps: 1) If the suppository feels too soft, leave it in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes or put it, still wrapped, in ice water until it hardens; 2) Remove the foil wrapper and dip the tip of the suppository in water; 3) Lie down on your side and with a finger insert the suppository into the rectum. Hold it in place for a few moments.

  • What should I avoid while taking Cafergot?

    Do not exceed the recommended dose of Cafergot, especially when used over long periods. Discontinuing Cafergot may produce withdrawal symptoms such as sudden, severe headaches.

    Cafergot is effective only to prevent migraine and migraine-type headaches. Do not use it for any other kind of headaches or for treatment of an active migraine attack.

  • What are possible food and drug interactions associated with Cafergot?

    If Cafergot is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your doctor before combining Cafergot with the following: beta-blockers, epinephrine, itraconazole, ketoconazole, nicotine, or pseudoephedrine.

    Do not take Cafergot if you are taking macrolide antibiotics, such as azithromycin or erythromycin, or certain protease inhibitors such as ritonavir or atazanavir used to treat HIV infection.

  • What are the possible side effects of Cafergot?

    Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, tell your doctor as soon as possible. Only your doctor can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking this drug.

    Side effects may include: fluid retention, high blood pressure, itching, nausea, numbness, rapid heart rate, slow heartbeat, tingling or pins and needles sensation, vertigo, vomiting, weakness

    Serious side effects include a bluish tinge to the skin, chest pain, change in heart rate, cold arms and legs, gangrene, and muscle pains. Tell your doctor right away if you notice any of these symptoms.

    Although these symptoms occur most commonly with long-term therapy at relatively high doses, they have been reported with short-term or normal doses. A few people on long-term therapy have developed heart valve problems.

  • Can I receive Cafergot if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?

    Do not take Cafergot if you are pregnant, as it may cause severe birth defects or other fetal harm. Tell your doctor right away if you become pregnant or think you may be pregnant. Cafergot may pass into breast milk and harm a nursing infant; do not breastfeed if you are taking Cafergot.

  • What should I do if I miss a dose of Cafergot?

    Take Cafergot only at the first sign of a migraine attack.

  • How should I store Cafergot?

    Store at room temperature in a tightly closed container away from light. Keep suppositories away from heat.

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