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All about: Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules

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Generic Name: Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules (nye-KAR-de-peen)
Brand Name: Cardene SR

Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules is used for:

Treating high blood pressure. It may be used alone or in combination with other high blood pressure medicines. It may also be used for other conditions as determined by your doctor.

Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules is a calcium channel blocker. It works by relaxing the blood vessels, which helps to lower blood pressure.

Do NOT use Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules if:

  • you are allergic to any ingredient in Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules
  • you are breast-feeding
  • you have advanced narrowing of your aorta (stenosis)

Contact your doctor or health care provider right away if any of these apply to you.

Before using Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules:

Some medical conditions may interact with Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules. Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you have any medical conditions, especially if any of the following apply to you:

  • if you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant
  • if you are taking any prescription or nonprescription medicine, herbal preparation, or dietary supplement
  • if you have allergies to medicines, foods, or other substances
  • if you have angina (chest pain), congestive heart failure or other heart problems, liver or kidney problems, low blood pressure, or lung congestion associated with heart attack, or have had a stroke
  • you are having beta-blocker withdrawal

Some MEDICINES MAY INTERACT with Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules. Tell your health care provider if you are taking any other medicines, especially any of the following:

  • Cyclosporine or digoxin because actions and side effects may be increased by Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules
  • Cimetidine because the side effects of this medicine may be increased

This may not be a complete list of all interactions that may occur. Ask your health care provider if Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules may interact with other medicines that you take. Check with your health care provider before you start, stop, or change the dose of any medicine.

How to use Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules:

Use Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules as directed by your doctor. Check the label on the medicine for exact dosing instructions.

  • Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules may be taken with or without food, but should not be taken with a high-fat meal.
  • Swallow Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules whole. Do not break, crush, or chew before swallowing.
  • Do not eat grapefruit or drink grapefruit juice while taking Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules unless your doctor directs you otherwise.
  • If you miss a dose of Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.

Ask your health care provider any questions you may have about how to use Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules.

Important safety information:

  • Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules may cause dizziness or fainting. Do not drive, operate machinery, or do anything else that could be dangerous until you know how you react to Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules. Using Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules alone, with other medicines, or with alcohol may lessen your ability to drive or to perform other potentially dangerous tasks.
  • Patients being treated for high blood pressure often feel tired or run down for a few weeks after beginning therapy. Continue taking your medicine even though you may not feel quite "normal." Contact your doctor or pharmacist about any new symptoms.
  • Maximum lowering of blood pressure occurs approximately 1 to 2 hours after taking the medicine. Blood pressure should be taken 1 to 2 hours after the medicine has been taken.
  • Before you have any medical or dental treatments, emergency care, or surgery, tell the doctor or dentist that you are using Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules.
  • Additional monitoring of your dose or condition may be necessary if you are using intravenous (IV) calcium.
  • LAB TESTS, including blood pressure, electrocardiogram (ECG) readings, and monitoring of heart rate, may be performed to monitor your progress or to check for side effects. Be sure to keep all doctor and lab appointments.
  • PREGNANCY and BREAST-FEEDING: If you become pregnant, discuss with your doctor the benefits and risks of using Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules during pregnancy. It is unknown if Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules is excreted in breast milk. Do not breast-feed while taking Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules.

If you suddenly stop taking Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules, you may experience WITHDRAWAL symptoms including increased chest pain (angina) and more frequent chest pain.

Possible side effects of Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules:

All medicines may cause side effects, but many people have no, or minor, side effects. Check with your doctor if any of these most COMMON side effects persist or become bothersome:

Diarrhea; dizziness; feeling of warmth (flushing); feet swelling; headache; nausea; weakness.

Seek medical attention right away if any of these SEVERE side effects occur:

Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); fainting; fast or irregular heartbeat; increased chest pain; pounding in the chest; shortness of breath; swelling of the ankles or hands.

This is not a complete list of all side effects that may occur. If you have questions or need medical advice about side effects, contact your doctor or health care provider. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 (1-800-332-1088) or at http://www.fda.gov/medwatch.

If OVERDOSE is suspected:

Contact 1-800-222-1222 (the American Association of Poison Control Centers), your local poison control center (http://www.aapcc.org/findyour.htm), or emergency room immediately. Symptoms may include confusion; drowsiness; flushing; slowed heart rate; slurred speech; weakness.

Proper storage of Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules:

Store Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules between 59 and 86 degrees F (15 and 30 degrees C) in a tightly closed container. Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules out of the reach of children and away from pets.

General information:

  • If you have any questions about Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules, please talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.
  • Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules is to be used only by the patient for whom it is prescribed. Do not share it with other people.
  • If your symptoms do not improve or if they become worse, check with your doctor.

This information is a summary only. It does not contain all information about Nicardipine Sustained-Release Capsules. If you have questions about the medicine you are taking or would like more information, check with your doctor, pharmacist, or other health care provider.

Issue Date: September 5, 2007
Database Edition 07.3.1.003
Copyright © 2007 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.

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