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Trade namesCardene, others
Other namesNicardipine hydrochloride
  • 2-[benzyl(methyl)amino]ethylmethyl-2,6-dimethyl-4-(3-nitrophenyl)-1,4-dihydropyridine-3,5-dicarboxylate
Clinical data
Drug classCalcium channel blocker (dihydropyridine)[1]
Main usesHigh blood pressure, heart related chest pain[1]
Side effectsSwelling, headache, palpations, low blood pressure[1]
Routes of
By mouth, intravenous
External links
US NLMNicardipine
Legal status
  • In general: ℞ (Prescription only)
Protein binding>95%
Elimination half-life8.6 hours
Chemical and physical data
Molar mass479.533 g·mol−1
3D model (JSmol)
Melting point136–138 °C (277–280 °F)
  • O=C(OCCN(Cc1ccccc1)C)\C2=C(\N/C(=C(/C(=O)OC)C2c3cccc([N+]([O-])=O)c3)C)C
  • InChI=1S/C26H29N3O6/c1-17-22(25(30)34-4)24(20-11-8-12-21(15-20)29(32)33)23(18(2)27-17)26(31)35-14-13-28(3)16-19-9-6-5-7-10-19/h5-12,15,24,27H,13-14,16H2,1-4H3 checkY

Nicardipine, sold under the brand name Cardene among others, is a medication used to treat high blood pressure and heart related chest pain.[1] It is also used for Raynaud's phenomenon.[2] It is given by mouth and injected into a vein.[1]

Common side effects include swelling, headache, palpations, and low blood pressure.[1] It should not be used in those with severe aortic stenosis.[1] It may be used in pregnancy.[3] It is a calcium channel blocker of the dihydropyridine class.[1] It works by dilating peripheral arteries.[1]

Nicardipine was patented in 1973 and first approved for medical use in 1981.[4] It was approved in the United States in 1988.[1] It is available as a generic medication.[3] In the United Kingdom 4 weeks of medication costs the NHS about £10 as of 2021.[3] In the United States this amount costs about 130 USD.[5]

Medical uses

It has been used in percutaneous coronary intervention.[6]


For angina or high blood pressure it is used at a dose of 20 to 30 mg three times per day.[3]

For a hypertensive emergency it is used at a dose of 1 to 5 mg/hr as an intravenous infusion.[3]

Society and culture

The patent for both Cardene and Cardene SR expired in October 1995.[7]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 1.9 "Nicardipine Monograph for Professionals". Retrieved 12 November 2021.
  2. Pope, J (10 October 2013). "Raynaud's phenomenon (primary)". BMJ clinical evidence. 2013: 1119. PMID 24112969.
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 BNF 81: March-September 2021. BMJ Group and the Pharmaceutical Press. 2021. p. 176. ISBN 978-0857114105.
  4. Fischer, Jnos; Ganellin, C. Robin (2006). Analogue-based Drug Discovery. John Wiley & Sons. p. 464. ISBN 9783527607495.
  5. "Nicardipine Prices, Coupons & Patient Assistance Programs". Retrieved 13 November 2021.
  6. Huang RI, Patel P, Walinsky P, et al. (November 2006). "Efficacy of intracoronary nicardipine in the treatment of no-reflow during percutaneous coronary intervention". Catheterization and Cardiovascular Interventions. 68 (5): 671–6. doi:10.1002/ccd.20885. PMID 17034064. S2CID 37071966.
  7. Nicardipine at Medline PLus

External links