Is joint and muscle pain a common side affect of Imitrex?

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Is joint and muscle pain a common side affect of Imitrex?

For treatment of 4-5 migraines a week, I have been taking Imitrex for over a year. It works excellent and gets rid of the headache but I suffer with extreme stiffness, joint and muscle pain so have been in the habit of taking advil along with it. Discussed with my doctor and am now using Topamax and rizatriptan (Maxalt) disintegrating tablets instead of the Imitrex. The rizatriptan did relieve the headache within an hour. Too early to tell if other pains will subside. Am wondering if anyone else has joint pain with Imitrex and whether a build-up of Imitrex is still in my system. Thanks for your help. Lori.


Dear Lori,

Do you keep the patient information sheets that come with your prescriptions? If not, it would be a good idea to start doing so. Joint and muscle pain can be side effects of Imitrex. They can also be symptoms of Migraine.

Another important issue to consider is that using triptans such as Imitrex and rizatriptan more than two or three days a week can compound your problems by causing medication overuse headache (MOH), aka rebound. See _Medication Overuse Headache - When the Remedy Backfires _ for more information on this. If you're in an MOH cycle, preventives such as Topamax may not be able to work.

Imitrex should be out of your system within a couple of days of your last dose.

Good luck,
John Claude Krusz and Teri Robert

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