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Severe hypotension, particularly with upright posture, may occur even with small doses of nitroglycerin particularly in patients with constrictive pericarditis, aortic or mitral stenosis, patientswho may be volume-depleted, or are already hypotensive. Hypotension induced by nitroglycerin may be accompanied by paradoxical bradycardia and increased angina pectoris. Symptoms of severe hypotension (nausea, vomiting, weakness, pallor, perspiration and collapse/syncope) may occur even with therapeutic doses.
Hypertrophic Obstructive Cardiomyopathy
Nitroglycerin produces dose-related headaches, especially at the start of nitroglycerin therapy, which may be severe and persistent but usually subside with continued use.
Patient Counseling Information
Advise the patient to read the FDA-approved patient labeling (Instructions for Use)
Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis, Impairment Of Fertility
Animal carcinogenesis studies with sublingual nitroglycerin have not been performed.
Rats receiving up to 434 mg/kg/day of dietary nitroglycerin for 2 years developed doserelated fibrotic and neoplastic changes in liver, including carcinomas, and interstitial cell tumors in testes. At high dose, the incidences of hepatocellular carcinomas in both sexes were 52% vs. 0% in controls, and incidences of testicular tumors were 52% vs. 8% in controls.
Lifetime dietary administration of up to 1058 mg/kg/day of nitroglycerin was not tumorigenic in mice.
Nitroglycerin was weakly mutagenic in Ames tests performed in two different laboratories. There was no evidence of mutagenicity in an in vivo dominant lethal assay with male rats treated with doses up to about 363 mg/kg/day, p.o., or in in vitro cytogenic tests in rat and dog tissues and for chromosomal aberration in Chinese hamster ovary cells.
In a three-generation reproduction study, rats received dietary nitroglycerin at doses up to about 434 mg/kg/day for six months prior to mating of the F0 generation with treatment continuing through successive F1 and F2 generations. The high dose was associated with decreased feed intake and body weight gain in both sexes at all matings. No specific effect on the fertility of the F0 generation was seen. Infertility noted in subsequent generations, however, was attributed to increased interstitial cell tissue and aspermatogenesis in the highdose males. In this three-generation study there was no clear evidence of teratogenicity.
Use In Specific Populations
Pregnancy Category C
Animal teratology studies have not been conducted with Nitroglycerin Pumpspray. Teratology studies in rats and rabbits, however, were conducted with topically applied nitroglycerin ointment at doses up to 80 mg/kg/day and 240 mg/kg/day, respectively. No toxic effects on dams or fetuses were seen at any dose tested. A teratogenicity study was conducted in the third mating of F0 generation female rats administered dietary nitroglycerin for gestation day 6 to day 15 at dose levels used in the 3-generation reproduction study. In offspring of the high-dose nitroglycerin group, increased incidence of diaphragmatic hernias and decreased hyoid bone ossification were seen. The latter finding probably reflects delayed development rather than a potential teratogenic effect, thus indicating no clear evidence of teratogenicity of nitroglycerin. There are no adequate and well-controlled studies in pregnant women. Nitroglycerin should be given to pregnant women only if clearly needed.
It is not known whether nitroglycerin is excreted in human milk.
Safety and effectiveness of nitroglycerin in pediatric patients have not been established.
Clinical studies did not include sufficient numbers of subjects aged 65 and over to determine whether they respond differently from younger subjects. Other reported clinical experience has not identified differences in responses between elderly (greater than or equal to 65 years) and younger (less than 65 years) patients. In general, dose selection for an elderly patient should start at the low end of the dosing range, reflecting the greater frequency of decreased hepatic, renal, or cardiac function, and of concomitant disease or other drug therapy.This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.
Last reviewed on RxList: 2/23/2016
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