woman holding her head like she's having a migraine

What IV Fluids Are Used When Treating Migraines And Headaches?

Migraine headaches can cause debilitating symptoms such as severe pain, sensitivity to light, nausea, and vomiting, and even cause vision problems such as blurred or foggy vision. These painful, life-altering symptoms can last for hours or even days. Many people who have migraines dread of the onset of their next migraine episode.

Do you suffer from migraine headaches? Have you read about IV therapy treatment for migraines, but you’re wondering what exactly is in the treatment? Well, you’ve come to the right place. Today, we’ll clear up the mystery behind what goes into the IV bag – and consequently, into your bloodstream – when you receive IV fluids for migraines.

What are migraine cocktail infusions?

Migraine cocktails are special blends of ingredients designed to relieve migraines. These can be obtained at IV bars or from in-home IV services.

Delivering treatment for migraines via IV therapy has several advantages, including:

  • Fast relief: Migraine treatment is delivered directly to the bloodstream, unlike oral treatments that must go through the digestive process. Direct delivery to the bloodstream means your body can absorb ingredients right away, typically offering relief within an hour.
  • Ensures hydration: IV fluids quickly hydrate your body and help balance electrolytes, making sure your body can function efficiently. Being properly hydrated also helps combat side effects of other migraine cocktail ingredients.
  • Best possible absorption: Oral treatments are broken down during the digestive process, resulting in the loss of about 50% of treatment ingredients. IV therapy boasts an absorption rate of 90% or more, ensuring you get the full benefits of treatment.

Migraine cocktail blends can differ between providers, so you should make sure to check ingredients before receiving treatment. Blends may include prescription medications, over-the-counter (OTC) medications, vitamins and nutrients, or a blend of all three.

Prescribed migraine cocktail

A prescribed migraine cocktail is comprised of one or more prescription medications. One 2019 study revealed that 50% of participants had less dizziness and 40% experienced pain relief after receiving infusion treatments.

Some examples of medications commonly found in prescribed migraine cocktails include:

  • Steroids help relieve inflammation and pain and help prevent reoccurrence of migraine for the next few days after treatment is received.
  • Antiemetics offer relief from nausea and vomiting and in some cases also help ease pain. Compazine (prochlorperazine) and Reglan (metoclopramide) are the two most common antiemetics found in migraine cocktails.
  • Depakote (valproic acid) traditionally treats seizures but is sometimes used in treatment of severe migraine.
  • Ergot alkaloids are anti-inflammatory medications that cause vasoconstriction, the narrowing of blood vessels in the brain, which eases pain. The most common ergot alkaloid found in prescribed migraine cocktails is dihydroergotamine.
  • Triptans also have anti-inflammatory effects promoting vasoconstriction. Imitrex (sumatriptan) is a triptan frequently found in prescription migraine cocktails.

OTC and natural migraine cocktails

There are various reasons why people may feel more comfortable with OTC or natural vitamin migraine cocktails, such as allergies to medications, negative interactions with prescriptions already being taken, or impact to other health conditions. OTC and vitamin IV formulas can help relieve migraine symptoms without the need for prescription medications.

OTC migraine cocktails

Typical ingredients found in OTC migraine cocktails include:

  • Caffeine helps stimulate vasoconstriction for pain relief.
  • Acetaminophen reduces the production of prostaglandins, which are natural compounds made up of fats in the body. They work much like hormones, creating various effects depending on which receptors they interact with. Reducing prostaglandin production eases migraine pain.
  • Aspirin relieves pain and helps reduce inflammation.

These ingredients are often found in OTC oral migraine medications like Excedrin. Delivering them via IV therapy instead of consuming them orally can enhance their effects due to the benefits of infusion therapy explained earlier in this article.

Vitamin migraine cocktails

There are a number of vitamins that have benefits for people who experience migraines. Vitamin blends are not typically made specifically to address migraines, and the names of vitamin blends can vary between providers.

Types of vitamin IV therapy formulas that can help relieve migraines include:

  • All-inclusive
  • Super Immune Boost
  • Myer’s Cocktail
  • Recovery

Typically, the following vitamins are found in these blends.

Vitamin C

Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant, helping to protect cells from free radical damage resulting from inflammation experienced during a migraine.

B-Complex vitamins

While various B vitamins are beneficial to those who suffer from migraines, Vitamin B2 stands out in research. Nine different studies have shown participants experienced pain relief and a decrease in frequency of migraine attacks after supplementing Vitamin B2 for three months. No serious side effects were reported.

Vitamin B12 also has a significant impact for migraine sufferers, as headaches are a common sign of Vitamin B12 deficiency. A 2019 study also found that people who reported experiencing migraines had some of the lowest levels of B12. Additionally, those with the highest levels of B12 were 80% less likely to have migraine attacks.


Zinc is an essential vitamin that cannot be produced or stored by the body. Zinc deficiency has also been linked to migraine. A study found that supplementing zinc caused the frequency of migraine attacks to decrease. It should be noted that it did not relieve headache or shorten the duration of migraine attacks.


Magnesium is yet another vitamin whose deficiency has been associated with migraine attacks.

Magnesium is thought to prevent and treat migraines in a few ways:

  • Helps reduce excessive stimulation of brain receptors and proinflammatory signaling, contributors to migraine development
  • Particularly effective for premenstrual migraine, which is tied to magnesium deficiency.
  • Reduces frequency and severity of attacks.
  • An analysis of 21 studies concluded that intravenous magnesium supplementation can provide significant relief for those suffering from acute migraines.


Glutathione is the body’s most abundant antioxidant, helping protect against free radical damage. Glutathione also plays a role in breaking down toxins that may function as migraine triggers. When combined with hydrating IV fluids, glutathione can aid in breaking down and flushing toxins from your body.

You may not be limited by pre-blended vitamin formulas. Many providers have the option to choose individual vitamins as add-ons to existing formulas or as a monotherapy. You may also be able to add OTC anti-inflammatory and anti-nausea medications to help bring relief from migraine symptoms faster.

Are there any side effects of migraine cocktails?

The side effects of migraine cocktails can vary depending on the ingredients, so you should consult your healthcare provider before getting a migraine cocktail.

OTC migraine cocktails

People with certain health conditions may need to avoid OTC migraine infusions. You should be sure to mention the following conditions during your pre-treatment health screening:

  • Pregnancy or breastfeeding
  • Any prescriptions you may be taking, especially other NSAIDs, diuretics, steroids, or blood thinners
  • Asthma
  • Heartburn or ulcers
  • Heart, kidney, or liver disease

OTC migraine infusion side effects may include:

  • Difficulty sleeping
  • Headache resulting from medication overuse
  • Abdominal pain, nausea, diarrhea, or vomiting

Vitamin IV migraine cocktails

Side effects of vitamin supplementation are usually caused by vitamin overload or having too much of a vitamin in your system. Side effects vary depending on the specific vitamin.

Some examples of vitamin overload symptoms include:

  • Vitamin C overload can cause iron overload, nausea, kidney stones, and diarrhea.
  • B-complex vitamin overload may result in vomiting, high blood sugar, and liver damage.
  • Glutathione overload may cause difficulty breathing, allergic reaction, or abdominal cramping.

Vitamins may also interact with your other medications. In some cases, vitamins may change how your body breaks down certain medications, changing the absorption rate. This can result in an increase or a decrease in how effective your medications are. Alternately, vitamin deficiency can result as a side effect of certain medications.

In-Home IV Treatments With Drip Hydration

Drip Hydration offers mobile IV treatments in the comfort of your home. Once you book your appointment, a certified nurse will come to your desired location and administer the treatment, which usually takes less than an hour. During this time, you can do anything you’d like, such as relax under a warm blanket or watch TV. Drip Hydration will also go to hotels, worksites, or other locations upon request.

You can either browse our treatment options and decide which is best for you or speak to a representative who can help you choose what you need based on your health goals. To schedule your appointment or learn more, contact us today!