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Dr Roger Henderson
Reviewed by Roger HendersonReviewed on 29.04.2024 | 3 minutes read

Migraleve is an over the counter medication used to relieve migraine symptoms. It contains a combination of yellow and pink tablets. The yellow tablets contain paracetamol and codeine, two different types of painkillers. The pink tablets contain paracetamol, codeine, and buclizine, an antihistamine that helps relieve nausea. Migraleve Yellow and Migraleve Pink are similar products that only contain the respective coloured tablets. All Migraleve products are available for purchase without a prescription.

Migraleve products are some of the strongest painkillers available over the counter and should only be used short term. You should initially try other painkillers like ibuprofen, aspirin, or paracetamol and only turn to Migraleve if these have been ineffective in the past.

How do I take it?

It is best to take Migraleve at the first sign of a migraine attack to stop the migraine from fully developing. Migraleve is suitable for adults and children aged twelve and above. However, dosing is age dependent.

  • Adults and children aged sixteen and above can take two pink tablets at the first sign of a migraine attack. They can then take two yellow tablets every four hours if necessary. However, they should not take more than eight tablets (two pink tablets and six yellow tablets) in a twenty-four-hour period.
  • Children aged twelve to fifteen can take one pink tablet at the first sign of a migraine attack. They can then take one yellow tablet every four hours if necessary. However, they should not take more than four tablets (one pink tablet and three yellow tablets) in a twenty-four-hour period.

Paracetamol and codeine can be dangerous if you take too much of them, so make sure you do not take any other paracetamol or codeine-containing products at the same time as taking Migraleve.

Can I become addicted to the medication?

It is possible to become addicted to Migraleve if you take the medication for too long. Codeine belongs to a family of drugs called opioids. Opioids activate receptors in the brain and spinal cord, reducing pain and giving us feelings of pleasure.

It is possible to become dependent on the feelings of these medications, so they should only be used for the shortest possible time and only when there is a good reason. The medications also carry a risk of tolerance with prolonged use, whereby you need to keep increasing the dose to have the same effect.

For these reasons, it is best to speak with your doctor before taking Migraleve for longer than three consecutive days (especially if you are taking the full recommended dose for the product).

Who should not take the medication?

As always, do not take the medication if you are allergic to any of the ingredients in it. You should also avoid the medication if you have had an allergic reaction to any other medications in the opioid family in the past. The medication is not suitable for children under twelve years of age. Only use the medication if your migraines have been diagnosed by your doctor. If not, then make an appointment to speak with your doctor.

You should speak with your doctor before taking the medication if you are pregnant, breastfeeding or if you have any medical conditions. Migraleve can interact with other medications such as warfarin (an anticoagulant), certain cholesterol-lowering medications like lomitapide and colestyramine, and other medications that can cause drowsiness.

If you take any prescription, over-the-counter, or herbal medicines, ask your doctor or pharmacist whether it is safe for you to take Migraleve.

Are there any side effects?

As with all medications, some people may experience side effects. Common side effects from Migraleve can include nausea, drowsiness, constipation, dry mouth, increased sweating, and dizziness. If you experience drowsiness or dizziness, it is best to avoid driving and drinking alcohol. If you are worried about any potential side effects you may be feeling, speak with your doctor or pharmacist.

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Dr Roger Henderson
Reviewed by Roger Henderson
Reviewed on 29.04.2024
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