Nimodipine Side Effects

It is possible that some side effects of nimodipine may not have been reported. These can be reported to the FDA here. Always consult a healthcare professional for medical advice.

For the Consumer

Applies to nimodipine: oral capsule liquid filled, oral solution, oral tablet

As well as its needed effects, nimodipine may cause unwanted side effects that require medical attention.

If any of the following side effects occur while taking nimodipine, check with your doctor immediately:

Less common
  • Blurred vision
  • chest pain or discomfort
  • confusion
  • difficult or labored breathing
  • fast, pounding, or irregular heartbeat or pulse
  • lightheadedness, dizziness, or fainting
  • shortness of breath
  • slow or irregular heartbeat
  • sweating
  • swelling
  • tightness in the chest
  • unusual tiredness or weakness

Some nimodipine side effects may not need any medical attention. As your body gets used to the medicine these side effects may disappear. Your health care professional may be able to help you prevent or reduce these side effects, but do check with them if any of the following side effects continue, or if you are concerned about them:

Less common
  • Abdominal or stomach cramps, discomfort, or pain
  • back pain
  • blemishes on the skin
  • constipation
  • diarrhea
  • discouragement
  • feeling sad or empty
  • headache
  • indigestion
  • irritability
  • lack or loss of appetite
  • loss of interest or pleasure
  • muscle pain
  • nausea or vomiting
  • pimples
  • rash
  • swollen mouth and tongue
  • tiredness
  • trouble concentrating
  • trouble sleeping
  • unpleasant taste
  • urge to have bowel movement

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to nimodipine: oral capsule, oral liquid

Cardiovascular

Cardiovascular effects have frequently been associated with the use of nimodipine, and are related to its vasodilatory properties. Mild to moderate hypotension has been reported in up to 5% of patients, and was the reason less than 1% of patients chose to discontinue therapy. Bradycardia has been reported and may be severe in rare cases. Rare cardiovascular side effects have included tachycardia, hypertension, peripheral edema, dizziness, and flushing. A case of pulmonary vasoconstriction has been associated with the use of this drug.[Ref]

Nervous system

The incidence of nervous system side effects associated with the use of nimodipine has been similar to placebo in large studies. Headache has been reported in 4% of patients, and is believed to be due to the vasodilatory properties of nimodipine.[Ref]

Hepatic

Hepatic effects include transient, reversible elevations in liver function tests.[Ref]

Hematologic

Hematologic side effects are rare and have included thrombocytopenia and anemia.[Ref]

Gastrointestinal

Gastrointestinal intolerance occurs occasionally.[Ref]

Dermatologic

Dermatologic effects include occasional cases of rash.[Ref]

References

1. Grobe-Einsler R "Clinical aspects of nimodipine." Clin Neuropharmacol 16 (1993): S39-45

2. "Randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of nimodipine in acute stroke. Trust Study Group." Lancet 336 (1990): 1205-9

3. Jan M, Buchheit F, Tremoulet M "Therapeutic trial of intravenous nimodipine in patients with established cerebral vasospasm after rupture of intracranial aneurysms." Neurosurgery 23 (1988): 154-7

4. Lovell AT, Smith M "Pulmonary vasoconstriction following intravenous nimodipine." Anaesthesia 47 (1992): 409-10

5. Fagan SC, Nacci N "Nimodipine and bradycardia in acute stroke--drug or disease?" DICP 25 (1991): 247-9

6. Sramek JJ, Heller AH, Sundaresan PR, Lettieri J, Sawin S, Cutler NR "Safety and tolerance of intravenous nimodipine." Ann Pharmacother 28 (1994): 1143-8

7. Langley MS, Sorkin EM "Nimodipine. A review of its pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic properties, and therapeutic potential in cerebrovascular disease." Drugs 37 (1989): 669-99

8. "Product Information. Nimotop (nimodipine)." Bayer, West Haven, CT.

9. Petruk KC, West M, Mohr G, Weir BK, Benoit BG, Gentili F, Disney LB, Khan MI, Grace M, Holness RO, et al "Nimodipine treatment in poor-grade aneurysm patients. Results of a multicenter double-blind placebo-controlled trial." J Neurosurg 68 (1988): 505-17

10. Florence G, Bonvento G, Roucher P, Charbonne R, Seylaz J "Effect of nimodipine on the autoregulation of cerebral blood flow studied by laser-doppler flowmetry." Brain Res 625 (1993): 301-6

11. Gelmers HJ, Gorter K, de Weerdt CJ, Wiezer HJ "A controlled trial of nimodipine in acute ischemic stroke." N Engl J Med 318 (1988): 203-7

12. Torrealba G, Sharp A, Soto B "Nimodipine-treated subarachnoid hemorrhage associated with acute pseudo-obstruction of the colon." Surg Neurol 28 (1987): 150-2

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