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New Generic Migraine Medicine To Hit Shelves

The triptan in Maxalt and Maxalt MLT’s is finally available for Migraine patients in a generic form… or it will be as soon as your local store receives them.

Two triptan abortive medicines were previously available in a generic form. Sumatriptan (Imitrex) and naratriptan (Amerge) were the first, and now rizatriptan benzoate (Maxalt, Maxalt MLT) has joined them.

Two companies have produced the pill and meltaway versions of rizatriptan and shipments have been sent, so patients may begin seeing them as options very soon!

A side note to this news: earlier this year rizatriptan was FDA approved for pediatric use in children starting at age 6 years. Axert was previously FDA approved for use in older children from the age of 12 years, however rizatriptan represents the first and only generic version of a triptan product officially approved for children of any age.

Triptans are often the medicine of choice for Migraineurs, but they can be prohibitively pricey. Now patients and parents of pediatric patients may want to consider talking to their doctors about this new generic option.

Generics do tend to have some differences which may affect some patients. I’ll keep an eye out for feedback re: patient experience with these new generic products, and interested patients can contribute their experiences to this Maxalt/rizatriptan forum thread.

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

1. Press Release: Mylan Launches First Generic Maxalt MLT® Tablets. Mylan Pharmaceuticals. Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Available at: href=”http://investor.mylan.com/releasedetail.cfm?ReleaseID=731093. January 2, 2013. 2Press Release. Par Pharmaceutical Begins Shipment of Rizatriptan Benzoate Tablets. Par Pharmaceuticals. Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey. Available at: http://www.parpharm.com/generics/index.php?option=com_pr&view=release&releaseid=1770445&. January 2, 2013.

Comments

  • Linda Susko
    6 years ago

    My son, daughter, and I take Maxalt for migraines. We were very happy to see that it was finally available in generic form. We took the version made by Glenmark Generics in India. Each one of us separately noticed that the pill does not work as well as the original Maxalt. I asked the pharmacist and he said that generics are exactly the same as the original. Well, this one is simply not.
    Now I am worried that the insurance won’t pay for the medicine if we try to get the original.

  • Ellen Schnakenberg author
    6 years ago

    Linda, The medicine in it must be identical, however the potency may vary greatly as allowed by law. This is the case with any generic medicine. It may be less or more potent. Additionally, the different fillers etc can often affect how the medicine is absorbed in the body.

    My personal experience is that a lot of insurance companies will allow the generic, but not the name brand. Some are even forcing patients to change to a different triptan altogether to save money. This happened to my daughter, who is now on a much less effective triptan than the one that was working so well for her. However, she can’t afford $450 a month for the good one, so she’s trying to manage with this one. I am afraid this may result in chronification of her Migraines, which scares me a little.

    I’m angry that insurance companies are taking over the care decisions, yet at the same time am very grateful they exist so we can have something. I had a scare a few weeks back in which my doctor was told my insurance had been canceled. It took us days to figure that one out, and thankfully it wasn’t true. Very scary.

  • Sue Necessary
    6 years ago

    I have taken the generic Maxalt made by the manufacturer TEVA. I took it on two different occassions and could not function. I became extremely nauseous and lethargic – I could do nothing for 24 hours, couldn’t even lift my head up off the pillow, non-functioning. With the brand named Maxalt, it was a mere 45 minutues and I was back to normal. This absolutely made me lose days of work and life. I am currently researching online to see if others have tried the generic brands to see how they worked. The manufacturers are Apotex Corp., Mylan Pharm., Par Pharm., Aurobindo, Glenmark, Natco, Sandoz, and Sun Pharma. If anyone has had luck with a generic and knows the brand please comment. TEVA was a bad experience for me.

  • Ellen Schnakenberg author
    6 years ago

    Sue, one of the difficult things about generics, is that they can vary in potency between brands. When one brand is 20% less potent than the name brand, and another brand is 20% more potent than the name brand, that’s a difference of 40% which could seriously affect patients. Sometimes the trick is figuring out which generic works best for any one patient. You can ask your pharmacist for specific generic brands, just be sure to do it and give them a few days to get your choice in to be filled. This will obviously take some time, and they can change their formulation at any time, however, at least it is something.

  • Candi Frontczak
    6 years ago

    I too have suffered from chronic migraines. I spent lots of money over the years and now have found out several tricks when traveling. 1. Don’t get too excited about the trip the excitement leads migraines. I try to stay in my mood as if I am working until I have a few days of being there then I can let go & relax! My worst migraine was my second marriage on my Honeymoon! That migraine lasted 2 days! 2. Try to stay with-in your normal meals, I start my day off with my oatmeal on vacay no I can’t have sweets for breakfast (triggers my migraines sweets on an empty stomach)I know this along with other triggers. It is so important to KNOW your triggers! Make a journal for 1 month you will find out your triggers it works!
    3. Never Ever use artificial sweeteners except Sucrose my migraines have decreased in HALF not using or drinking anything with Splenda, Equal ETC! Read every label Diet Pepsi, Diet Coke, low calorie foods, such as yogurt, Diet Teas, Crystal Light all use aspartame do you know when Aspartame is heated as in my hot tea it turns into Arsenic! No wonder we get migraines! When I want a Mt. Dew or a Coke I only get a small slushy of Mt. Dew, Coke etc! **NOTE** never DIET products Unless label says Sucrose! This stops my craving & has 1/2 calories & caffeine! 4. My help on stopping the caffeine this was very hard to do until I found Spark from Advocare it is also a healthy way to lose weight! Spark is a natural caffeine I can & do enjoy. I was not aware they have generic for Maxalt I am not happy that Dr.’s or pharmacies don’t share this to us! Hope my tips can be helpful!

  • Vicki
    7 years ago

    Thanks for the info! It’s about time these meds are becoming generic!

  • Barbetta
    7 years ago

    Sometimes generics are fine then they aren’t. Some of us the generic doesn’t work as good as the brand name that slightest change in ingredients makes all the difference. And with the cost of these drugs vary too because generic sumatriptan is about $20 difference than the brand name and that is without insurance.

  • Ellen Schnakenberg author
    7 years ago

    Hi Barbetta – You’re right, they can vary. If you have an experience with the new generic versions of Maxalt and Maxalt MLT’s, please let us know here how you think it measures up with the name brand. Time will tell if these will end up being helpful outside of the pocketbook, or not…

  • CarolineSwing
    7 years ago

    This is fantastic news! Thank you for sharing!

  • Ellen Schnakenberg author
    7 years ago

    You’re so welcome. I LOVE being the bearer of great news!!! Now let’s see how the generic measures up…

  • Janet
    7 years ago

    Just got my generic maxalt last Thursday before moving from Las Vegas to Atlanta. It saves about $69 in mynco-pay fee ….$33 is far better than $101!

    Janet Jones
    Douglasville GA

  • Ellen Schnakenberg author
    7 years ago

    Wonderful jones8900! Please do us the favor of letting us know if you think the generic measures up to the brand name 🙂

  • afinkel
    7 years ago

    In Canada, we also have generic Zomig: Zolmitriptan

  • Ellen Schnakenberg author
    7 years ago

    Linda Dunscombe – It is not available here in the US yet as a generic, although I understand that it should be soon. We do not recommend purchasing illegal generics as these drugs may be counterfeit and potentially unsafe.

  • Linda Dunscombe
    7 years ago

    Please send me info on Zomig generic As this is the only one that works for me and believe me, I have tried everything. Thank You for this comment

    [comment edited by moderator for safety reasons]

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