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How long does DHE stay in the body?

I am new to migraines...I was just diagnosed with vestibular migraines. Age 46....I just got home yesterday after 7 treatments of DHE...I felt great!!! I was headache free for almost a full 24 hours....headache is back 🙁 They said I had to wait 24 hrs to take imitrex.... I am seriously new to this. I have been dizzy and headaches since January but they took me off all pain meds for rebound so the constant intenseness is new. Not happy 🙁

  1. Hi al2ic2ia,

    Thank you for your question. Getting a new diagnosis can be scary and confusing, been there done that! The best thing we can do for ourselves is to learn about our particular type of migraine and/or headache disorder. And educated patient can help make decisions with their health care partner.

    If I'm not mistaken DHE stays in the system for about 9 hours. I found this that may help; "The major excretory route of dihydroergotamine is via the bile in the feces. The total body clearance is 1.5 L/min which reflects mainly hepatic clearance. Only 6%-7% of unchanged dihydroergotamine is excreted in the urine after intramuscular injection. The renal clearance (0.1 L/min) is unaffected by the route of dihydroergotamine administration. The decline of plasma dihydroergotamine after intramuscular or intravenous administration is multi-exponential with a terminal half-life of about 9 hours." This is from

    I know how awful it is to be dizzy and in pain. I've tried PT for vestibular issues that helped quite a bit. Something to think about!


    1. Thank you Nancy. It is pretty scary. I am so tired of being dizzy and having headaches.... 5 months is too long

  2. You should be able to get a DHE prescription from your Headache Specialist so you can give yourself injections at home. I get 30 ampules per month and purposely cut the 1 mg dose down to 0.40 mg and get three syringes filled since they include agout 20 mg more than the 1 mg size. Hopefully you have a doctor and insurance company that will work with you on this? You may want to inquire about a new FDA approved med Aimovig™ (erenumab) which belongs to a new class of drugs known as selective calcitonin gene-related peptide (CGRP) antagonists, which are used for the treatment of acute migraine attacks. But work with your doctor, establish trust and rapport and you should be able to get anything you want.

    1. Been having migraines for eighteen years and gone to two university migraine clinics and various neurologists over the years. Plus all the naturopathic remedies. Never heard of it bred prescribed DHE. Is it rescription med or what?

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