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Calcium Channel Blockers (CCBs) (cont.)

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What are the side effects of calcium channel blockers?

Common side effects of calcium channel blockers include:

Sexual dysfunction, overgrowth of gums, and liver dysfunction also have been associated with calcium channel blockers. Verapamil (Covera-HS, Verelan PM, Calan) and diltiazem (Cardizem LA, Tiazac) worsen heart failure because they reduce the ability of the heart to contract and pump blood.

With which drugs do calcium channel blockers interact?

Calcium channel blockers interact with several drugs.

  • Verapamil (Covera-HS, Verelan PM, Calan) and diltiazem (Cardizem LA, Tiazac) reduce the elimination and increase the blood levels of carbamazepine (Tegretol), simvastatin (Zocor), atorvastatin (Lipitor), and lovastatin (Mevacor). This can lead to toxicity from these drugs.

  • Several calcium channel blockers [for example, diltiazem (Cardizem LA, Tiazac), felodipine (Plendil)] increase the level of cyclosporine (Sandimmune, Neoral, Restasis) and similarly lead to toxicity of cyclosporine.

  • Grapefruit juice (1 glass, approximately 200ml) may elevate serum concentrations of verapamil (Covera-HS, Verelan PM, Calan), felodipine (Plendil), nifedipine (Adalat, Procardia), nicardipine (Cardene), nisoldipine (Sular), and possibly amlodipine (Norvasc).
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 6/22/2016

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