Can you use expired Sumatriptan? 

Can you use expired Sumatriptan? 

You should not use expired Sumatriptan or any other medication for that matter. Expired Sumatriptan has no guarantee regarding its safety and efficacy. 

However, studies have shown that Sumatriptan can outlive its expiry date, especially if it is stored properly and the drug doesn’t necessarily become toxic. It simply starts to lose its efficacy with time. 

Sumatriptan is an antidepressant that can literally change your brain chemistry. I would definitely not recommend using an expired antidepressant. 

What are the possible dangers associated with the use of expired Sumatriptan? 

Expired Sumatriptan may work for some time once it’s past the expiration date. However, it loses its potency with time and the most commonly expected outcome is a therapeutic failure. 

Sumatriptan works by binding to and activating serotonin receptors in the brain, which causes the blood vessels to constrict and reduces inflammation. This helps to alleviate the pain and other symptoms associated with migraines (1).

If you are taking an expired Sumatriptan which has lost its potency, the drug will not bind to its respective receptors and will not work the way it should. This means you will see no effect of this medication and your symptoms will persist. 

This is why the FDA has strongly recommended against the use of expired medications, as there is no easy way to tell whether or not they are potent enough to help you with your symptoms adequately (2). 

What to do if you have taken expired Sumatriptan? 

Expired Sumatriptan does not harm your health as the drug does not turn toxic once it’s past the expiration date. However, it will not benefit your mental health either. 

Having expired Sumatriptan indicates that either you did not take your treatment seriously, or you’re trying to use Sumatriptan without a prescription. The medication is also used for managing migraine headaches, but it is not the drug of choice for everyone. 

This is why I’d recommend you talk to your healthcare provider and get a proper diagnosis. There are plenty of other antidepressants which may suit you more. Your mental health should be your priority and you should not take expired medications just for the sake of finishing them.

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Brar Y, Hosseini SA, Saadabadi A. Sumatriptan. 2023 Feb 12. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023 Jan–. PMID: 29262214. Available from:


U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Don’t Be Tempted to Use Expired Medicines [Internet]. Silver Spring (MD): U.S. Food and Drug Administration; 2021 [cited 2022 Oct 24]. Available from: