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CARDIZEM
DILTIAZEM TABLET - ORAL

Important Note

The following information is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of your physician, pharmacist or other healthcare professional. It should not be construed to indicate that use of the drug is safe, appropriate, or effective for you. Consult your healthcare professional before using this drug.

DILTIAZEM TABLET - ORAL

(dill-TIE-uh-zem)

COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Cardizem

Uses

Diltiazem is a calcium channel blocker. Calcium is involved in blood vessel contraction. By blocking calcium, diltiazem relaxes and widens blood vessels. Diltiazem is used to treat chest pain (angina). Ask your doctor or pharmacist about possible problems related to use of short-acting calcium channel blockers.

How To Use

This medication should be swallowed whole with a full glass of water unless your doctor directs you otherwise. May be taken with or without meals. This drug must be taken as directed if used to prevent chest pain. It is not effective if taken only when chest pain occurs. Do not stop taking this medication suddenly without your doctor's permission. Your dose may need to be gradually decreased.

Side Effects

This drug may cause dizziness and lightheadedness especially during the first few days. Avoid activities requiring alertness. When you sit or lie down for a while, get up slowly to allow your body to adjust and minimize dizziness. You may also experience bloating, heartburn, muscle cramps, headache, flushing, nasal congestion, sore throat, constipation or diarrhea. Inform your doctor if they become bothersome. Notify your doctor if you develop: breathing difficulties, swelling of the hands or feet, an irregular heartbeat. If you notice other effects not listed above, contact your doctor or pharmacist.

Precautions

Before taking this drug, tell your doctor if you have: heart problems, liver disease, lung disease, allergies. Limit intake of alcohol while taking this drug. This medication should be used only when clearly needed during pregnancy. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor. This drug is excreted into breast milk. If there is no alternative to using this drug you should discontinue breast-feeding. Consult your doctor before breast-feeding.

Drug Interactions

Tell your doctor of all prescription and nonprescription drugs you may use, especially of: cyclosporine, flecainide, beta-blockers (including eye drops), intravenous (IV) calcium, digoxin, lithium, disopyramide, high blood pressure medication, benzodiazepines (e.g., midazolam, triazolam), buspirone, lovastatin, quinidine, rifampin, carbamazepine, cimetidine, St John's wort. Avoid any drugs that increase your heart-rate (the decongestants phenylephrine, pseudoephedrine and phenylpropanolamine are examples). These drugs are commonly found in over-the-counter cough-and-cold products. Do not start or stop any medicine without doctor or pharmacist approval.

Overdose

If overdose is suspected, contact your local poison control center or emergency room immediately. Symptoms of overdose may include dizziness, weakness, slowed or irregular heartbeat, nausea, drowsiness, confusion, and slurred speech.

Notes

Do not share this product with others.

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose, take as soon as remembered; do not take if it is almost time for the next dose, instead, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not "double-up" the dose to catch up.

Storage

Store at room temperature away from sunlight and moisture.

Medical Alert

Your condition can cause complications in a medical emergency. For enrollment information call MedicAlert at 1-800-854-1166 (USA), or 1-800-668-1507 (Canada).