Fioricet is a misspelling of the famous drug Fioricet, a drug used in the treatment of tension headaches. It is a product of Novartis Pharmaceuticals, one of the largest drug manufacturing companies that have manufactured a lot of high-quality drugs. The drug’s content comprises of butalbital, acetaminophen, and caffeine which works together to offer relief in the following ways:
- Acetaminophen; this is a pain relieving component to aid in getting rid of a tension headache.
- Caffeine: this is geared towards making acetaminophen more effective as it is a stimulant.
- Butalbital: it works as a sedative to help in bringing down the level of anxiety thereby making the person taking it to get more relaxed and able to sleep.
Fioricet pill image
When these three components of Fioricet work together, the tension migraine will be relieved. Fioricet is only available in tablet form that should be taken either one or two tablets after four hours. The maximum tablets that can be taken in twenty-four hours are six tablets.
For best results, Fioricet tablet should be used when the first signs of a tension headache appear. Waiting until the condition worsens may not be the best option as the drug may fail to work properly. The tablet should be taken orally with a glass of water either before or after eating, whichever works best for you as it is not affected by food intake.
Aspirin, Butalbital, Caffeine Interactions
Before you take Fioricet, you should inform the doctor if you are using any other drug so that he can determine if it will lead to any interactions if used together. Fioricet may be contraindicated if used with any of the drugs listed below:
- Some drugs used in the treatment of gouts like probenecid and sulfinpyrazone.
- Some antibiotics like erythromycin and disulfiram
- Drugs that affect liver enzymes like erythromycin, valproic acid, and cimetidine.
- MAO inhibitors like isocarboxazid, procarbazine, and methotrexate.
- Blood thinners like dabigatran and warfarin.
The above is not the full list of drugs that interact with Fioricet; ensure that the doctor attending to you is aware of your entire drug intake to avoid any negative reactions.
Fioricet may inhibit the working of hormonal birth control pill, patches or rings and this could result in unwanted pregnancy. If the doctor advises you to continue with the use of Fioricet, an alternative birth control method should be used to avoid pregnancy.
Every drug that is administered to relieve pain or reduce fever should not be used with Fioricet as it may lead to more adverse reactions. If the doctor has said that you take aspirin together with Fioricet, he will advise you on the best dose that will keep the side effects as minimal as possible.
Photo of Brand Fioricet package
Fioricet Generic Name
After Novartis lost its patent rights, other generic companies came up to produce drugs that work in the same way as Fioricet, but cost much lower. The generic form of Fioricet is referred to as Butalbital, aspirin, and caffeine and works in the same way as the brand drug.
Generic Fioricet is manufactured by different manufacturers and is available under different brands in the market. Some of these brand names are MikArt Fioricet manufactured by MikArt pharmaceuticals, Butalbital, acetaminophen, caffeine, among others.
Just like the brand Fioricet, generic forms of Fioricet should be taken with caution as they contain the same active ingredients and could result in adverse side effects if wrongly used. The brand Fioricet contains the black box warning which is the strongest that FDA can impose on a drug as a result of the harm that may proceed out of its use. You should, therefore, be as careful when using the generic brands as they also contain similar ingredients. Allow the doctor to guide you on the dosage so that you may keep the side effects as minimal as possible.
Butalbital, which is an ingredient in Fioricet generic and brand drugs is a depressant and may lead to dependence on the drug. This may lead to abuse of these drugs where a person using them gets so used to them that he cannot function well without them. It also has a way of making those who take it feel high and when the drug’s concentration gets lower, the person feels depressed.
Photo of generic Fioricet
Fioricet Side Effects: Risks of Acetaminophen Medication for a Migraine
Acetaminophen, which is one of the active ingredients in Fioricet, has made FDA impose the black box warning on the package as it is known to cause acute liver dysfunction. Some of the patients who have used Fioricet have suffered liver complications with some being forced to undergo a liver transplant while others died out of liver-related complications.
Acetaminophen will be harmful to you if you exceed if you take a dose of 400mg and above. You will also be in danger if you take another drug containing acetaminophen at the same time you are taking Fioricet. This is why it is important to inform the doctor if you are using any other drug when he is administering a dose of Fioricet.
A person who has a pre-existing liver complication will be at a higher risk of suffering from acetaminophen-related complications. Some of the signs that will indicate that your liver has been damaged as a result of acetaminophen are:
- Skin becoming yellow
- Yellowing of the eyes
- Dark urine
- Severe abdominal pain
- Extreme fatigue
If you experience any of the above signs while taking Fioricet, you should seek immediate medical help before the liver is severely damaged or before you end up losing your life.
Fioricet is an effective relief from a tension headache which should be used whenever you feel the signs of an oncoming attack. You should follow the doctor’s advice and avoid taking more than the recommended daily dose of six tablets each day. Exceeding this dose is the reason why many experience the severe side effects. Ensure too that you space out the dosage such that you will take two tablets every four hours for effective treatment of a tension headache as well as migraines. When buying this drug especially from online stores, ensure that you buy original drugs and not counterfeit by sourcing it from reliable online pharmacies. You can follow our pharmacy guide in our list of Top Online Pharmacies when choosing a credible online pharmacy to buy from.