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Nifedipine Oral tablet, extended-release

What is this medicine?

NIFEDIPINE (nye FED i peen) is a calcium-channel blocker. It affects the amount of calcium found in your heart and muscle cells. This relaxes your blood vessels, which can reduce the amount of work the heart has to do. This medicine is used to treat high blood pressure and chest pain caused by angina.

How should I use this medicine?

Take this medicine by mouth with a glass of water. Follow the directions on the prescription label. Do not cut, crush or chew. Take your doses at regular intervals. Do not take your medicine more often then directed. Do not suddenly stop taking this medicine. Your doctor will tell you how much medicine to take. If your doctor wants you to stop the medicine, the dose will be slowly lowered over time to avoid any side effects.

Talk to your pediatrician regarding the use of this medicine in children. Special care may be needed.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medicine?

Side effects that you should report to your doctor or health care professional as soon as possible:

  • blood in the urine

  • difficulty breathing

  • fast heartbeat, palpitations, irregular heartbeat, chest pain

  • redness, blistering, peeling or loosening of the skin, including inside the mouth

  • reduced amount of urine passed

  • skin rash

  • swelling of the legs and ankles

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your doctor or health care professional if they continue or are bothersome):

  • constipation

  • facial flushing

  • headache

  • weakness or tiredness

What may interact with this medicine?

Do not take this medicine with any of the following medications:

  • certain medicines for seizures like carbamazepine, phenobarbital, phenytoin

  • rifabutin

  • rifampin

  • rifapentine

  • St. John's Wort

This medicine may also interact with the following medications:

  • antiviral medicines for HIV or AIDS

  • certain medicines for blood pressure

  • certain medicines for diabetes

  • certain medicines for erectile dysfunction

  • certain medicines for fungal infections like ketoconazole, fluconazole, and itraconazole

  • certain medicines for irregular heart beat like flecainide and quinidine

  • certain medicines that treat or prevent blood clots like warfarin

  • clarithromycin

  • digoxin

  • dolasetron

  • erythromycin

  • fluoxetine

  • grapefruit juice

  • local or general anesthetics

  • nefazodone

  • orlistat

  • quinupristin; dalfopristin

  • sirolimus

  • stomach acid blockers like cimetidine, ranitidine, omeprazole, or pantoprazole

  • tacrolimus

  • valproic acid

What if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.

Where should I keep my medicine?

Keep out of the reach of children.

Store at room temperature below 30 degrees C (86 degrees F). Protect from moisture and humidity. Keep container tightly closed. Throw away any unused medicine after the expiration date.

What should I tell my health care provider before I take this medicine?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:

  • heart problems, low blood pressure, slow or irregular heartbeat

  • kidney disease

  • liver disease

  • previous heart attack

  • stomach or intestine problems

  • an unusual or allergic reaction to nifedipine, other medicines, foods, dyes, or preservatives

  • pregnant or trying to get pregnant

  • breast-feeding

What should I watch for while using this medicine?

Visit your doctor or health care professional for regular check ups. Check your blood pressure and pulse rate regularly. Ask your doctor or health care professional what your blood pressure and pulse rate should be and when you should contact him or her.

You may get drowsy or dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs mental alertness until you know how this medicine affects you. Do not stand or sit up quickly, especially if you are an older patient. This reduces the risk of dizzy or fainting spells. Alcohol may interfere with the effect of this medicine. Avoid alcoholic drinks.

If you are taking Procardia XL, you may notice the empty shell of the tablet in your stool.

Online Medical Reviewer: Louise Akin, RN, BSN
Online Medical Reviewer: Daphne Pierce-Smith, RN, MSN, FNP, CCRC
Last Review Date: 10/18/2011
© 2000-2014 The StayWell Company, LLC. 780 Township Line Road, Yardley, PA 19067. All rights reserved. This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professional's instructions.