Pentoxifylline Side Effects
Commonly reported side effects of pentoxifylline include: dizziness and nausea. Other side effects include: dyspepsia and vomiting. See below for a comprehensive list of adverse effects.
For the Consumer
Applies to pentoxifylline: oral tablet extended release
As well as its needed effects, pentoxifylline may cause unwanted side effects that require medical attention.
If any of the following side effects occur while taking pentoxifylline, check with your doctor or nurse as soon as possible:Rare
- Chest pain
- irregular heartbeat
- unusual excitement
- convulsions (seizures)
Minor Side Effects
Some pentoxifylline 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:
- nausea or vomiting
- stomach discomfort
For Healthcare Professionals
Applies to pentoxifylline: compounding powder, oral tablet extended release
Pentoxifylline has been generally well tolerated. While typically minor, side effects have necessitated discontinuation of the drug in approximately 3% of treated patients. Tolerance to mild side effects generally has developed with continued use.[Ref]
Gastrointestinal side effects have been the most common side effects associated with pentoxifylline therapy and have included dyspepsia, nausea, vomiting, and belching, which occurred in 1% to 3% of patients. Some smaller studies have reported gastrointestinal disturbance in up to 33% of patients treated with pentoxifylline.[Ref]
Nervous system side effects have occurred in 1% to 2% of treated patients and have included headache, dizziness, insomnia, and tremor. Some smaller studies have reported nervous system adverse effects in up to 17% of treated patients. In addition, rare cases of visual and auditory hallucinations have been reported. Aseptic meningitis has been reported in postmarketing experiences.[Ref]
Cardiovascular side effects have included reports of palpitations, flushing, and angina. These reports have usually been associated with higher doses of an immediate release capsule which is not available in the United States.[Ref]
Hematologic side effects have included anecdotal reports of pancytopenia and fatal aplastic anemia.[Ref]
Hepatic side effects have included postmarketing reports of cholestasis.
Hypersensitivity side effects have included postmarketing reports of anaphylactic reaction, anaphylactoid reaction, and anaphylactic shock.
1. "Product Information. Trental (pentoxifylline)." Hoechst Marion-Roussel Inc, Kansas City, MO.
2. Dettelbach HR, Aviado DM "Clinical pharmacology of pentoxifylline with special reference to its hemorrheologic effect for the treatment of intermittent claudication." J Clin Pharmacol 25 (1985): 8-26
3. Witter FR, Smith RV "The excretion of pentoxifylline and its metabolites into human breast milk." Am J Obstet Gynecol 151 (1985): 1094-7
4. Ward A, Clissold SP "Pentoxifylline: a review of its pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic properties, and its therapeutic efficacy." Drugs 34 (1987): 50-97
5. Green RM, McNamara J "The effects of pentoxifylline on patients with intermittent claudication." J Vasc Surg 7 (1988): 356-62
6. Lucas MA "Prevention of post-operative thrombosis in peripheral arteriopathies. Pentoxifylline vs. conventional antiaggregants: a six-month randomized follow-up study." Angiology 35 (1984): 443-50
7. Baker DE, Campbell RK "Pentoxifylline: a new agent for intermittent claudication." Drug Intell Clin Pharm 19 (1985): 345-8
8. Crowder JE, Cohn JB, Savitsky JP, Morgan DL, Slywka J, Cobert BL, Hryniewicki SW, Piccirillo RT, Wilcox CS "Efficacy and safety of pentoxifylline in geriatric patients with intermittent claudication." Angiology 40 (1989): 795-802
9. Gilbert GJ "Pentoxifylline-induced musical hallucinations." Neurology 43 (1993): 1621-2
10. Pitner J, Simpson W, Gutierrez S, Mintzer J "Pentoxifylline (Trental)-induced visual hallucinations." J Am Geriatr Soc 41 (1993): 782-3
11. Mass RD, Venook AP, Linker CA, Zipkin RE "Pentoxifylline and aplastic anemia." Ann Intern Med 107 (1987): 427-8
It is possible that some side effects of pentoxifylline may not have been reported. These can be reported to the FDA here. Always consult a healthcare professional for medical advice.
More about pentoxifylline
- Side Effects
- During Pregnancy or Breastfeeding
- Dosage Information
- Drug Images
- Drug Interactions
- Support Group
- Pricing & Coupons
- En Español
- 4 Reviews – Add your own review/rating
Related treatment guides
Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided is accurate, up-to-date and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. In addition, the drug information contained herein may be time sensitive and should not be utilized as a reference resource beyond the date hereof. This material does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients, or recommend therapy. This information is a reference resource designed as supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill , knowledge, and judgement of healthcare practitioners in patient care. The absence of a warning for a given drug or combination thereof in no way should be construed to indicate safety, effectiveness, or appropriateness for any given patient. Drugs.com does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of materials provided. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the substances you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse, or pharmacist.