Midrin for Migraine: October, 2011, Update

If you’ve used Midrin or its equivalents as your Migraine abortive medication, you’ve probably followed the long saga of Midrin and medications equivalent to it being removed from the market. Thanks to one of our Migraine.com members, Mandy, I’ve learned that there may still be hope.

To summarize the situation, Midrin was developed long enough ago that it first went on the market before the current FDA drug approval process went into effect. During the many years between the time that the FDA approval process went info effect and the time that Midrin was discontinued, none of the pharmaceutical companies producing these medications did the required clinical trials and applied for FDA approval. So, first Midrin was discontinued, then the equivalent medications – medications with the same ingredients – were pulled from the market. Since Midrin was never approved by the FDA, there technically weren’t generics; there were equivalent drugs. For more background on this, including a copy of the email explanation I received from the FDA, see Looking for Midrin Equivalents for your Migraines?.

Mandy posted some comments on one of my other Midrin blog entries to let us know that her pharmacist has recently been able to get a Midrin equivalent medication for her. When I asked, she very helpfully provided the name of the manufacturer, Macoven Pharmaceuticals based in Magnolia, Texas.

This morning, I called Macoven’s customer service and spoke with a woman named Cindy. She confirmed that they are indeed producing and distributing a medication equivalent to Midrin. They distribute across the U.S., and pharmacists should be able to get their Isometh/Dich/Apap capsules. Those abbreviations stand for isometheptene mucate, dichloralphenazone, and acetaminophen

Cindy was well aware of the situation with these medications and the FDA. She told me that Macoven is “working with the FDA” to be able to keep their product on the market. Although I find this encouraging, I’m going to be cautious about being too encouraged until Macoven has officially worked things out with the FDA. The reason for my caution is that two other pharmaceutical companies have worked with the FDA over the last year to keep their products on the market, and they ended up discontinuing their Midrin equivalent medications.

I’ll be checking in with Macoven periodically to see what progress they’ve made with the FDA and will post updates whenever I have new information.


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35 comments on “Midrin for Migraine: October, 2011, Update

  1. sassyinnc says:

    I, too, used to take Midrin for my migraines. It worked relatively well, but I had to take the max dose with each headache…along with Phenergan and Vicodin. When it became unavailable, my pharmacist helped me to find another med to try – Prodrin. It is my “mircle drug”!! In the past, I had to take at least 5 Midrin for my migraine, and now I find that either 1/2 of a Prodrin caplet or a whole one completely takes away my migraines!! I tell everyone who mentions migraines to try it. I cannot get over just how well it works! The only downside is that it is not covered by my insurance – 30 caplets cost me close to $150. I now measure my migraines by COST – is it a $2.50 headache (1/2 Prodrin) or a $5.00 headache (a whole Prodrin) – LOL!! I have very rarely had a $10 headache, but they do happen. I do advise anyone trying Prodrin to start with a lower dose than the recommended 2 at the beginning of a migraine – it does contain caffeine which can cause problems if you are not used to alot of caffeine, or are caffeine-free. So, while it is expensive, I find that I take so much less of it than Midrin and it works so much better – well worth it for me!! Good luck finding a treatment for your migraines that works for you =:)

  2. Teri Robert author says:

    Prodrin too has been pulled from the market. At this time, the only Midrin equivalent available unless you have it compounded is the Macoven product discussed in this post.


  3. We get it at a compounding pharmacy for my mom.

  4. Coretta B. Jefferson says:

    Thanks Becky for the info. Take care n Be Blessed!!

  5. Fred Bauer says:

    I was able to get the Midrin equivalent manufactured by Macoven through my local large-supermarket-chain pharmacy a couple of weeks ago. It did take them a couple of days to get, but it was available.

  6. Jo Ann Balesano says:

    We picked it up over the weekend! It is available. Manufacturer is Macoven. Good luck

  7. Robin Cada says:

    Is anyone still here? Anyone have any updates as of today 2-10-2012 regarding Midrin? My Migraines ( possibly clusters) went away and now have come back with a vengeance from Hell because I am entering peri-menopause. Completely debilitating. So bad that I was in ER the other night, they gave me 3 doses of morphine in 2mg intervals, no go, then a good dose of dilaudid and….finally relief, but temporary relief and certainly not something I can keep doing until this spell breaks. Midrin is the only thing that helped in the past. And will be my only option when I get this bad. I cannot take triptans as they lock up the whole left side of my body. My jaw clamps right down. The awful neurologist at Mayo Clinic keeps insisting I take the triptans or suffer. WTF? I have tried all triptans, I told him I WILL NOT take a trpotan ever again. They make my BP and pulse go wild. While the Midrin makes me pretty tired and head a little woozy, it beats the pain from the migraine anyday. Midrin is still a last resort med, because even Midrin makes me jaw a tad tight. My migraines are weird; they come in spells, I can go a year or more with only minor ones that are due to triggers(period, smells, food) and are somewhat manageable. But now I am in a Migraine/cluster cycle (I think they are cluster headaches and so does another doc because of the severity and the odd pattern, different area, different sensation and very, very bad pain)My nose, eyes, ears feel like they are being stabbed. Am I alone in this not knowing exactly what type of headache I am having?

  8. Julie Janeen Ford says:

    You can have it compounded at any compounding pharmacy!

  9. I have to say..as a patient who had taken Midrin for over 10 years..the FDA excuse is a cop out..they stopped production because there was no money to be made! This information given to me by my VERY TRUSTED pharamcist! NICE TRY! REDICULIOUS!

  10. nancygunn says:

    I was happy to hear about Macoven, but in the meantime I had pursued other sources. I live in western Colorado, and my local compounding pharmacist told me that she could make up the migraine meds for me with my doctor’s script. ***Post edited by moderator due to personal contact information***

  11. wow, I didn’t know abour freezing tablets and capsules. I try to keep my Naratriptan filled, but it is good to know tha tI don’t have to waste the ones I don’t use right away.

  12. Teri Robert says:

    Elaine, it’s a good tip for those of us who use more meds at some times than at others. Medications are too expensive to throw away.

  13. Vicki says:

    I checked with my pharmacy, and they already had it on the shelf! They got it from Macoven. We sent a fax request to my doctor, but I guess he needs to see me again first.

  14. Julie Lyon says:

    This is fantastic! Thanks for the update 🙂

  15. crevb says:

    As of November 7, 2011 Reed’s Compounding Pharmacy in Tucson Arizona is making the drug. It takes three days to fill the prescription. I don’t know if they mail prescriptions but here is the phone number **edited by moderator to remove personal contact information** Oh, and no insurance is accepted, sorry. You might try contacting a compounding pharmacy in your area before calling Reed’s. No, I don’t work for them, but like many others here midrin is the only solution to my migraines and I get them in two forms: ocular(retinal) and common. Thank you Teri for the information.

  16. Teri Robert author says:

    I appreciate your comment, but this blog entry was to let people know that there’s no need to have it compounded at this time because there’s a Midrin equivalent being produced and shipped. Your pharmacist should be able to get it for you. More information in the blog/article.

  17. I used to take Midrin myself for my bad headaches and was informed when I went to my regular doctor/NP the last time just a few months ago that it was discontinued. I wish that I knew of a medicine that I coud take to get rid of my bad headaches now as over the counter stuff dosent always work for me. My headaches went away for awile after my recent foot surgery but are now back and almost daily again. If there is anything that anyone can recommend I sure would appreciate it. I also am wondering what type of pillow would be good for me to use for sleeping too.

  18. Teri Robert says:

    Mary, check out the article that these comments are on. There IS a Midrin equivalent medication available now. http://migraine.com/blog/news/midrin-migraine-october-2011-update/

  19. Teri Robert says:

    Mary, sorry. Hit the reply button too quickly. There’s nothing that should be taken daily for Migraine attacks. That can make things worse by causing medication overuse headaches. See Help! How Can I Not Overuse Migraine Medications? at http://migraine.com/blog/living-with-migraine/help-how-can-i-not-overuse-migraine-medications/. Are you working with your doctor to find something effective for prevention?

  20. Teri Robert author says:

    You’re very welcome, Vicki!

  21. Teri Robert author says:


    Could you have Midrin confused with Pamprin? One of the ingredients in Midrin is a controlled substance, and Midrin has never been OTC. If you try this Midrin equivalent, keep in mind that it shouldn’t be used more than two or three days a week to avoid medication overuse headache.


  22. Val Milo says:

    Wow! Amazing news! I hope they get it worked out!

  23. I just was able fill a script for Midrin at Walgreens. Macoven was the manufacture. They have a very limited supply. Rite Aid told me they had some earlier this week but are now out. So little by little it is getting on the market. I am taking it for cluster headaches.

  24. taralane says:

    Midrin was the first med I used to get rid of period cramps back in the 1970’s instead of percodan which I was using because the pain was so severe. The docs were giving me 60 caps at a time with each scrip. Then as the migraines got worse I used the percodan, but switched to the midrin, which worked well. I had to take about 8 pills to get rid of the pain over about 12 hours (4 in between each dose) which was a long time to get relief but I got rebounds from the percodan, so that was not really working, and the midrin wasn’t giving me rebounds, at least not at first, and really did take away the pain, so I used it for period cramps and migraines as well. It was a great med, until I could not get it any more. And it was OTC for a while. I would love to have it back in my arsenal of pain meds for the daily headaches that I deal with everyday. It would make my life so much more pain free and enable me to have a more normal life. This update is great news!

  25. Vicki says:

    This is wonderful! Thanks to you both for the update!

  26. Ellen Schnakenberg says:

    So good to know. Now to get kids to make appts quick to get a couple scripts before they’re gone – – again. Thanks for the fabulous update Teri!

  27. Teri Robert says:

    You’re welcome, Ellen! BTW, Dr. Krusz has told me that you can freeze tablets and capsules to keep them from expiring. If you get prescriptions, it could be helpful to keep them refilled and freeze any that you don’t need immediately.

  28. Sheli Thomas says:

    Wow, Thank You for this information, Midrin & 800 mg of Ibuprofen was my ‘go to’ for any Migraines with Aura, I was able to take that at first warning signs and continue on with my day at work! I will look for this and call my doc 🙂

  29. Adele Schlazer Lester says:

    Did this help the aura?

  30. Sheli Thomas says:

    Adele something helped it, my aura’s never last very long, I’m guessing maybe 10 minutes….I often do not get an aura, or I am not aware of it as my worst migraines,the disabling ones, I wake up with them full blown….

  31. Teri Robert says:

    Kimberly, it was marketed as a prescription Migraine abortive medication.

  32. You know, that name rings a bell, but from a Long time ago! Was it marketed as a PMS OTC medication, or as a migraine medication by prescription? That should help my recollection! Thanks

  33. Bonnie Koziol says:

    I think you may be combining the name of two different menstrual drugs. I remember taking Midol and Pamprin for menstrual woes in the early 1970s.

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