Dihydroergotamine (Injection)


Dihydroergotamine (dye-hye-droe-er-GOT-a-meen)

Treats migraine headaches. Belongs to a class of drugs called ergot alkaloids.

Brand Name(s)

D.H.E. 45

When This Medicine Should Not Be Used

How to Use This Medicine


  • Your doctor will tell you how much medicine to use and how often.
  • You may be told to use the medicine at the first sign of a migraine headache.
  • An IM injection is a shot given in your muscle (upper arm, thigh, buttocks).
  • A doctor, nurse, or other health caregiver will teach you how to give yourself the shots. You may want a family member or friend to also learn how to give your medicine.

If a dose is missed:

  • Dihydroergotamine is used when you have a migraine. It is not used on a regular schedule.

How to Store and Dispose of This Medicine

  • Store the medicine at room temperature, away from heat and direct light.
  • Before each injection, look carefully at the medicine, if you see any solid pieces or if the medicine has changed color, You should not use that medicine. Get a new vial of medicine.
  • If you have your treatments at home, you should be given a special container for the used needles. Keep it where children and pets cannot reach it.
  • Keep all medicine out of the reach of children.

Drugs and Foods to Avoid

Ask your doctor or pharmacist before using any other medicine, including over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products.

  • Talk to your doctor before using this medicine if you are using decongestants (such as pseudoephedrine or phenylpropanolamine), midodrine, diet pills, or if you use other medicine to treat migraines (such as sumatriptan (Imitrex®) or zolmitriptan (Zomig®).
  • Make sure your doctor knows if you are using propranolol (Inderal®), medicine for your heart, or antibiotics for an infection (such as erythromycin or clarithromycin).
  • It is best not to smoke tobacco while using this medicine. Smoking may increase side effects of the medicine.

Warnings While Using This Medicine

  • You should not use more of this medicine that your doctor ordered.
  • This medicine helps stop migraine headaches. It does not relieve pain or stop other kinds of headaches.
  • Do not get pregnant while you are being treated with this medicine. Dihydroergotamine may cause birth defects or be harmful to an unborn baby.
  • This medicine may make you dizzy or drowsy. Avoid driving or using machinery until you know how the medicine will affect you.

Possible Side Effects While Using This Medicine

Call your doctor right away if you notice any of these side effects:

  • Coldness, numbness, tingling, or a blue color in your fingers and toes
  • Hives, rash, severe itching
  • Muscle pain in your arms and legs
  • Weakness in your legs
  • Chest pain
  • Fast, slow, or irregular heartbeat
  • Wheezing or trouble breathing
  • Swelling in your face, hands, legs, or feet

If you notice these less serious side effects, talk with your doctor:

  • Mild nausea and vomiting
  • Mild itching
  • Flushing, sweating
  • Feeling dizzy or drowsy

If you notice other side effects that you think are caused by this medicine, tell your doctor

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088

Version Info

  • Last reviewed on 8/4/2014

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