nifedipine, Adalat (discontinued brand), Procardia, Afeditab, Nifediac

  • Pharmacy Author:
    Omudhome Ogbru, PharmD

    Dr. Ogbru received his Doctorate in Pharmacy from the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy in 1995. He completed a Pharmacy Practice Residency at the University of Arizona/University Medical Center in 1996. He was a Professor of Pharmacy Practice and a Regional Clerkship Coordinator for the University of the Pacific School of Pharmacy from 1996-99.

  • Medical and Pharmacy Editor: William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR
    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR

    Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.

What is nifedipine?

Nifedipine belongs to a class of medications called calcium channel blockers (CCBs) that are used to treat angina (heart pain), high blood pressure, and abnormal heart rhythms.

Is nifedipine available as a generic drug?

Yes

Do I need a prescription for nifedipine?

Yes

Why is nifedipine prescribed to patients?

Nifedipine is used for the treatment and prevention of angina resulting from either an increased workload on the heart (as with exercise) or spasm of the coronary arteries. It is used in the treatment of high blood pressure, to treat abnormally fast heart rhythms such as atrial fibrillation, and in the prevention of episodes of rapid heart rhythm originating from the atria of the heart.

It also is used to dilate blood vessels that go into spasm such as those causing Raynaud's phenomenon, a painful condition of the hands caused by spasm of the arteries supplying blood to the hands.

Non-FDA approved uses include:

  • anal fissures (applied to the fissures),
  • prevention of migraine headaches in adults,
  • ureteral stones (as secondary therapy) and
  • wound healing (applied to the skin).

What are the side effects of nifedipine?

Side effects of nifedipine are generally mild, and reversible. Most side effects are expected consequences of the dilation of the arteries. The most common side effects include:

Less common side effects include:

Uncommon side effects include:

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 11/2/2016

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