Brand name Sanomigran
Used in the following combined preparations None
Pizotifen general information
Pizotifen is an antihistamine drug with a chemical structure similar to that of the tricyclic antidepressants it also has similar anticholinergic effects. This drug is prescribed for the prevention of migraine headaches in people who suffer frequent, disabling attacks. The exact mechanism by which the drug works is not known, but it is thought to be through its blocking action on the chemicals (histamine and serotonin) that act on blood vessels in the brain.
Pizotifen has also been prescribed to relieve the symptoms of carcinoid syndrome, a disorder in which excess production of serotonin causes attacks of flushing and diarrhoea.
The main disadvantage of prolonged use of pizotifen is that it stimulates the appetite and, as a result, often causes weight gain. For this reason, use of this drug should be reviewed twice yearly. It is usually prescribed only for people in whom other measures for migraine prevention – for example, avoidance of stress and foods that trigger attacks – have failed.