Generic Name: nifedipine (nye-FED-i-peen)
Brand Name: Procardia
Nifedipine is used for:
Treating certain kinds of angina (chest pain). It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.
Nifedipine is a calcium channel blocking agent. It works to decrease chest pain by dilating (widening) blood vessels in the heart and other blood vessels.
Do NOT use nifedipine if:
- you are allergic to any ingredient in nifedipine
- you have very low blood pressure or shock due to heart problems
- you have had a heart attack within the past 2 weeks
- you are taking a barbiturate (eg, phenobarbital), carbamazepine, a hydantoin (eg, phenytoin), a rifamycin (eg, rifampin, rifabutin), or St. John's wort
Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.
Before using nifedipine:
Some medical conditions may interact with nifedipine. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:
- if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant, or are breast-feeding
- if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
- if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
- if you have a history of angina, heart blood vessel problems, or other heart problems (eg, aortic stenosis; congestive heart failure; heart attack; fast, slow, or irregular heartbeat); high or low blood pressure; liver problems (eg, cirrhosis); kidney problems; swelling of the arms or legs; or fluid in your lungs
- if you take medicines to lower your blood pressure
- if you have recently had or will be having surgery, or if you have recently stopped taking a beta-blocker (eg, propranolol)
Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with nifedipine. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:
- Alpha-blockers (eg, doxazosin), beta-blockers (eg, propranolol), diuretics (eg, hydrochlorothiazide, furosemide), methyldopa, or phosphodiesterase type 5 (PDE5) inhibitors (eg, sildenafil, tadalafil) because the risk of low blood pressure may be increased
- Acarbose because high blood sugar may occur
- Azole antifungals (eg, ketoconazole, fluconazole), calcium channel blockers (eg, diltiazem, verapamil), cimetidine, fluoxetine, HIV protease inhibitors (eg, ritonavir, saquinavir), imatinib, macrolide antibiotics (eg, erythromycin, clarithromycin), nefazodone, streptogramins (eg, quinupristin/dalfopristin), or valproic acid because they may increase the risk of nifedipine's side effects
- Barbiturates (eg, phenobarbital), carbamazepine, hydantoins (eg, phenytoin), rifamycins (eg, rifampin, rifabutin), or St. John's wort because they may decrease nifedipine's effectiveness
- Cyclosporine, digoxin, ketanserin, lithium, tacrolimus, theophylline, or vinca alkaloids (eg, vincristine) because the risk of their side effects may be increased by nifedipine
- Quinidine, theophylline, or vinca alkaloids (eg, vincristine) because their effectiveness may be decreased by nifedipine
This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if nifedipine may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.
How to use nifedipine:
Use nifedipine as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.
- Take nifedipine by mouth with or without food.
- Do not eat grapefruit or drink grapefruit juice while you use nifedipine.
- Swallow nifedipine whole. Do not break, crush, or chew before swallowing.
- Do not suddenly stop taking nifedipine without checking with your doctor. If you need to stop nifedipine, your doctor may gradually lower your dose.
- If you miss a dose of nifedipine, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.
Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use nifedipine.
Important safety information:
- Nifedipine may cause dizziness or light-headedness. These effects may be worse if you take it with alcohol or certain medicines. Use nifedipine with caution. Do not drive or perform other possibly unsafe tasks until you know how you react to it.
- Nifedipine may cause dizziness, light-headedness, or fainting; alcohol, hot weather, exercise, or fever may increase these effects. To prevent them, stit up or stand slowly, especially in the morning. Sit or lie down at the first sign of any of these effects.
- Do NOT take more than the recommended dose without checking with your doctor.
- Proper dental care is important while you are taking nifedipine. Brush and floss your teeth and visit the dentist regularly.
- Tell your doctor or dentist that you take nifedipine before you receive any medical or dental care, emergency care, or surgery.
- If your doctor has instructed you to check your blood pressure regularly, be sure to do so.
- Use nifedipine with caution in the ELDERLY; they may be more sensitive to its effects.
- Nifedipine should not be used in CHILDREN; safety and effectiveness in children have not been confirmed.
- PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, contact your doctor. You will need to discuss the benefits and risks of using nifedipine while you are pregnant. Nifedipine is found in breast milk. If you are or will be breast-feeding while you use nifedipine, check with your doctor. Discuss any possible risks to your baby.
Possible side effects of nifedipine:
All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:
Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:
Constipation; cough; dizziness; flushing; giddiness; headache; heat sensation; heartburn; light-headedness; muscle cramps; nausea; nervousness; weakness.
Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue; unusual hoarseness); fainting; fever, chills, or persistent sore throat; mental or mood changes; red, swollen, blistered, or peeling skin; severe or persistent dizziness or light-headedness; shortness of breath; slow, fast, or irregular heartbeat; sudden, unusual weight gain; swelling of the arms or legs; symptoms of heart attack (eg, chest, jaw, or left arm pain; numbness in an arm or leg; sudden, severe headache or vomiting); tender, bleeding, or swollen gums; tremors; unusual bruising or bleeding; unusual tiredness or weakness; vision problems; wheezing; worsening chest pain (eg, longer, more often, more severe); yellowing of the skin or eyes.
This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions about side effects, contact your health care provider. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. To report side effects to the appropriate agency, please read the Guide to Reporting Problems to FDA.
If OVERDOSE is suspected:
Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center, or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include fainting; loss of consciousness; rapid, slow, or irregular heartbeat; severe dizziness or light-headedness.Proper storage of nifedipine:
Store nifedipine at room temperature, between 59 and 77 degrees F (15 and 25 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep nifedipine out of the reach of children and away from pets.
- If you have any questions about nifedipine, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
- Nifedipine is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
- If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.
- Check with your pharmacist about how to dispose of unused medicine.
This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take nifedipine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about nifedipine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to nifedipine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using nifedipine.
Disclaimer: This information should not be used to decide whether or not to take this medicine or any other medicine. Only your health care provider has the knowledge and training to decide which medicines are right for you. This information does not endorse any medicine as safe, effective, or approved for treating any patient or health condition. This is only a brief summary of general information about this medicine. It does NOT include all information about the possible uses, directions, warnings, precautions, interactions, adverse effects, or risks that may apply to this medicine. This information is not specific medical advice and does not replace information you receive from your health care provider. You must talk with your healthcare provider for complete information about the risks and benefits of using this medicine.