Generic name: Nifedipine.

Other brand names: Adalat, Procardia XL.

Procardia is a calcium channel blocker. It increases the amount of oxygen that reaches the heart muscle. 

Quick Facts About Procardia


Used to treat angina (crushing chest pain). Also used to treat high blood pressure.

Procardia Dosage

Continue to take exactly as prescribed even if symptoms subside. Must take on a regular basis in order for medication to be effective, and may take several weeks before you get the full benefit of Procardia. Take at the same time each day. May take with food; do not chew or crush tablets. Do not substitute brands.

  • Usual adult dose: Procardia — one 10 milligram capsule taken 3 times per day. Range may be from 10 to 20 milligrams taken 3 times per day, up to 120 to 180 milligrams per day maximum. Procardia XL — one 30 or 60 milligram tablet taken once per day.
  • Usual child dose: not generally prescribed for children.
  • Missed dose: take as soon as possible, unless almost time for next dose. In that case, do not take missed dose; go back to regular schedule. Do not double doses.

Procardia Side Effects

Overdose symptoms:

dizziness, extremely low blooc pressure, flushing, fluttering heartbeat, loss of consciousness, nausea, nervousness, swelling due to fluid retention, vomiting. If you suspect an overdose, immediately seek medical attention.

More common side effects: constipation; cough dizziness; fatigue; fluid retention (ankle or leg swelling); giddiness; headache; heartburn; heat sensatior. light-headedness; low blood pressure; mood changes; muscle cramps; nasal congestion; nausea; sore throat; swelling of arms, legs, hands, feet; tremors; wheezing.

Less common Procardia side effects: abdominal pain, blurred vision, chest congestion, chills, cramps, diarrhea, difficult or labored breathing, difficulty in balance, difficulty sleeping, drowsiness, dry cough, dry mouth, excessive sweating, fever, flushing, fluttering heartbeat, gas, general chest pain, hives, impotence, indigestion, itching, jitteriness, joint pain, leg cramps, muscle and bone inflammation, nervousness, pain, production of large amounts of pale urine, rash, sexual difficulties, shakiness, shortness of breath, skin inflammation, sleep disturbances, sleepiness, stiff joints, tingling or pins and needles, weakness. Rare side effects: abnormal or terrifying dreams, anemia, anxiety, arthritis, back pain, belching, blood in urine, breast pain, breathing disorders, dark stools containing blood, decreased sex drive, depression, distorted taste, dulled sense of touch, excessive urination at night, facial swelling, fainting, fever, gout, gum irritation, hair loss, hepatitis, hives, hot flashes, increased angina, increased sweating, inflammation of sinuses, irregular heartbeat, migraine, muscle incoordination, muscle pain, muscle tension, nosebleeds, painful or difficult urination, paranoia, rapid heartbeat, reddish or purplish spots under the skin, ringing in ears, swelling around the eyes, tearing eyes, temporary blindness, upper respiratory tract infection, vague feeling of illness, vertigo, vision changes, vomiting, weight gain.


Inform your doctor before combining Procardia with:

cimetidine (Tagamet); digitalis (Lanoxin); other heart and blood pressure medications such as propranolol (Inderal) and metoprolol (Lopressor).

No known food/other substance interactions. 

Special Cautions

If pregnant or planning to become pregnant, inform your doctor immediately. Not known if Procardia appears in breast milk.

No special precautions apply to seniors.

Not generally prescribed for children.

  • There may be an increased risk of heart attack or death with Procardia. Should not use if sensitive to or allergic to Procardia or other calcium channel blockers such as Adalat and Calan.
  • At beginning of therapy and when dose is increased may experience low blood pressure, making you feel light-headed or feint. May also occur if you are taking beta-blockers such as Tenormin or Inderal; doctor should monitor blood pressure.
  • Small risk of increased angina at the beginning of therapy and when dose is increased; contact your doctor if this occurs.
  • Shell from Procardia XL tablets may appear in your stool; this is normal.
  • If doctor stops beta-blocker therapy, should be gradually stopped. If you have tight aortic stenosis (narrowing of aortic valve that obstructs blood flow from the heart to the body) and were taking a beta-blocker, doctor will monitor your condition.
  • Use with caution if you have stomach or intestinal narrowing.
  • Inform your doctor or dentist in the event of a medical emergency or prior to surgery or dental treatment that you are taking Procardia.
  • To avoid moderate swelling of the arms, hands, legs, and feet, doctor may prescribe a diuretic.

Note: provides accurate and independent information prescription pills, over-the-counter medicines and natural products. This material is provided for educational purposes only and is not intended for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. If you have questions about  dosage, or Procardia side effects, please contact your healthcare provider