Rizatriptan 10 mg wafers were listed on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS) as authority required (streamlined) on 1 March 2010 for people with past migraines that have usually failed to respond to analgesics.1

Rizatriptan has been available overseas for more than 10 years.2 All triptans are effective for migraine3,4 but individual response cannot be predicted.5 If the first triptan fails, try another.

As of 1 April 2010, the PBS restriction for naratriptan, sumatriptan and zolmitriptan has changed: there is no longer a requirement for past migraines to have failed to respond to ergotamine*.6 This change brings the restriction into line with that of rizatriptan.

* Injectable dihydroergotamine is the only ergot alkaloid indicated for migraine listed on the PBS


  1. Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee. Positive recommendations made by the Pharmaceutical Benefits Advisory Committee (PBAC) in November 2009 relating to the listing of drugs on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS). Canberra: Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing, 2009. http://www.health.gov.au/internet/main/publishing.nsf/Content/pbacrec-nov09-positive (accessed 6 January 2010).
  2. Hargreaves RJ, Lines CR, Rapoport AM, et al. Ten years of rizatriptan: from development to clinical science and future directions. Headache 2009;49:S3–20.
  3. Ferrari MD, Goadsby PJ, Roon KI, et al. Triptans (serotonin, 5-HT agonists) in migraine: detailed results and methods of a meta-analysis of 53 trials. Cephalalgia 2002;22:633–58.
  4. Pascual J, Mateos V, Roig C, et al. Marketed oral triptans in the acute treatment of migraine: a systematic review on efficacy and tolerability. Headache 2007;47:1152–68.
  5. National Prescribing Centre. The management of migraine. MeReC Bulletin 13:(2). Liverpool: National Health Service, 2002. http://www.npc.co.uk/ebt/merec/pain/migraine/resources/merec_bulletin_vol13_no2.pdf (accessed 15 January 2010).
  6. Department of Health and Ageing. PBS for Health Professionals. Canberra, 2010. www.pbs.gov.au (accessed 6 January 2010).