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Migraine Treatment Medication Zecuity Receives FDA Approval

Migraine treatment medication Zecuity (formerly called Zelrix) has received FDA approval following a product redesign. The FDA had initially rejected the drug’s application for approval back in August 2011 because of concerns about chemistry and manufacturing.

Zecuity is a single-use patch that delivers sumatriptan through a mild, battery-powered electrical current. Although the medication sumatriptan is not new (in fact, it was the first triptan), the delivery mechanism utilized by Zecuity is extremely novel and exciting.

hm-migraine-patchThe Zecuity patch can be applied to the arm or thigh. Over a four hour period, the patch transmits sumatriptan through the skin. During this time a microprocessor in the patch monitors the resistance of the patient’s skin to absorption into the blood stream and adjusts delivery accordingly.

Zecuity is not just exciting because of the sophisticated technology it employs, however. It will also provide an additional, much needed treatment option for migraine patients that bypasses the gastrointestinal tract. This is essential because migraineurs experience something known as gastroparesis, which slows down the GI tract and makes it difficult for medications taken orally to take effect in a timely fashion.

The most common side effects associated with use of Zecuity are pain, itching, tingling, warmth or discomfort at the application site. Some patients experience redness at the application site after removing the patch, but this typically goes away within 24 hours. All the same contraindications carried by other triptans are equally applicable to Zecuity.

In NuPathe’s press release announcing the FDA decision, company CEO Armando Anido said they are currently looking for commercial partners and expect the product to be available to consumers toward the end of 2013.

This article represents the opinions, thoughts, and experiences of the author; none of this content has been paid for by any advertiser. The team does not recommend or endorse any products or treatments discussed herein. Learn more about how we maintain editorial integrity here.

1. “NuPathe’s Zecuity Approved by the FDA for the Acute Treatment of Migraine,” NuPathe Inc. press release, January 17, 2013, Available at: Accessed January 17, 2013.


  • Natasha
    4 years ago

    I have emailed several times now (just sent another one) asking if you have any information on when Zecuity will be available, no one ever responds. Can you give me any information about this?? The Zecuity website has never been updated, the company won’t get back to me or my pharmacist who has contacted them because I have had a prescription for it for the last 6 months and can’t get any information. I keep asking you guys here about it because every single email that is sent out from has ads for Zecuity, yet no information about when it will actually be available. How can you continue to advertize something like this and never give any real information on how to get it, or when we can get it? I am at the end of my rope with this disease, literally tried every single thing there is out there besides surgery (I am not exaggerating). I have had constant never ending migraines for 10+ years now (and migraines since I was 4), am on disability, and am unable to care for myself in any way because my pain is so severe ALL THE TIME. I can barely stand up and walk to the bathroom. I am 28 years old, this is no way to live my life. I feel as though I am constantly being teased (when I receive emails from about a medication patch that could potentially help me (even just a little help would be amazing), but is apparently unattainable. Please give me some information about this product, or how I can get more information somewhere else (please don’t tell me their website, I have that and it is useless). I can’t believe a website would advertise a product constantly, yet never give any real information about if it will ever be available…

  • Cindi
    6 years ago

    I don’t know how I missed this when you posted it, Diana! I hope my insurance will cover this so I can try it. I use the sumivel and it works well, but I love the idea of the time release. The additional anti-nausea ingredient is a plus, too. So now, we wait, huh? Well, at least it is something to look forward to. Some good news for us finally. I hope this upward trend continues.

  • Diana-Lee author
    6 years ago

    Yes, the cost issue will definitely be crucial for most patients. In the meantime, keep in mind that there are options like sumatriptan injections and Zomig nasal spray currently available that allow you to avoid pills.

  • lepoppet
    6 years ago

    This is awesome news. I have a very hard time with any pill. My gastroenterologist did a “Gastic Emptying” study on me for chronic nausea and vomiting. He said that my digestive system has slowed down and I wasn’t properly digesting my food. He affirmed the fact that gastic problems are co-morbid with migraine disease. He recommended that I stop taking any pain medication for my migraines as those meds are depressing my digestive system. Hmmm….so I guess I get a choice…

    …migraine but no vomiting or…
    …vomiting and no migraine…

    Isn’t life as a migraineur lovely! I’ve refilled my perscriptions for Zophran (sublingual), Reglan and Phenergan.

  • tucker
    6 years ago

    I have all 3 too. Had that test done with 1 teaspoonful of oatmeal. Mine was negative but I have to wonder if that tiny amount really made any difference, I mean a mouse eats more than that! I had lost 40 lbs at the time. I dumped the GI doc when he made a smart remark to the effect that I just wasn’t eating and wanted attention and wanted to take all this medication. REALLY!?!?!? And he was so highly recommended by a friend of mine. At least my PCP and neuro will refill the nausea meds.

    I had sumavel samples and liked them. Haven’t tried the generic shot yet. The tabs always take about 2 hours to work.

  • Best Dessert First
    6 years ago

    I will be happy when this comes out but wonder about the cost. I hate taking pills and waiting on them to work

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