Nicardipine is indicated for the management of hypertension and the alleviation of angina (chest pain). Classified as a calcium channel blocker, nicardipine exerts its therapeutic effects by promoting vasodilation, thereby reducing blood pressure and relieving strain on the cardiovascular system. It additionally helps the delivery of oxygen and nutrients to the myocardium, assisting in the control of chest pain.
Uses and Dosage
Nicardipine is available in two formulations: regular capsules and extended-release capsules, both administered orally. The regular capsules are typically taken three times daily, while the extended-release capsules are taken twice daily.
Establish a consistent daily schedule for taking nicardipine to facilitate adherence. Take nicardipine exactly as prescribed, without altering the dosage or frequency unless otherwise directed by your doctor.
When consuming the extended-release capsules, swallow them whole and avoid splitting, chewing, or crushing them.
Although nicardipine helps control chest pain when taken regularly, it does not provide immediate relief during an ongoing episode. In such cases, your doctor may prescribe an alternative medication specifically for acute chest pain.
While nicardipine effectively manages high blood pressure and angina, it does not offer a cure for these conditions. Continue taking nicardipine as prescribed, even if you feel well. Do not discontinue the medication without consulting your doctor.
Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention:
- upset stomach
- dizziness or lightheadedness
- excessive tiredness
- fast heartbeat
- muscle cramps
- increased sweating
- dry mouth
Inform your healthcare provider immediately if you experience any serious side effects:
- swelling of the face, eyes, lips, tongue, arms, or legs
- difficulty breathing or swallowing
- increase in frequency or severity of chest pain (angina)
Prior to initiating nicardipine treatment, inform your healthcare provider or pharmacist about any known allergy to the medication or other allergens. This product may contain inactive ingredients that can potentially trigger allergic reactions or other complications.
Before commencing this medication, disclose your complete medical history to your doctor or pharmacist, particularly if you have aortic stenosis, liver disease, or kidney disease.
Nicardipine may induce dizziness. Consumption of alcohol or marijuana can exacerbate this dizziness. Refrain from driving, operating machinery, or engaging in tasks requiring alertness until you can safely do so.
During pregnancy, the use of this medication should be limited to situations where it is clearly necessary. Consult with your doctor to weigh the potential risks and benefits.
It is uncertain whether this drug passes into breast milk. Prior to breastfeeding, consult your doctor for appropriate guidance.
Form and Strength
Cardene is available in the following forms and strengths:
How long does it take for Cardene to lower my blood pressure?
It takes about 1 to 2 hours to see the maximum blood pressure-lowering effect from Cardene.
Is Cardene a vasopressor or vasodilator?
Cardene is an effective cerebral vasodilator, increasing cerebral blood flow and oxygen delivery.