Advertisement

What are the side effects of calcium channel blockers?

Calcium channel blockers block the influx of ions into cells, so calcium (that's the ion that gets blocked) can't rush into cells. This makes these drugs useful in treating high blood pressure and a rapid heart rate. Side effects of calcium channel blockers sometimes are problematic. These include:

  • Constipation - Because calcium channel blockers prevent calcium ions from influxing into cells, one of the places that prevent them from influxing is into the muscles that make your gut contract. So constipation can be a real problem for people who take calcium channel blockers. And sometimes it's actually debilitating.
  • Headache - Headaches are common, as they are with beta blockers and alpha blockers.
  • Lower extremity swelling (specifically feet and ankles) - This is not actually harmful, but it sure makes walking hard.

Side effects of calcium-channel blockers include fatigue, dizziness, constipation, and swelling of the feet. Calcium-channel blockers may not be the best choice for people with heart failure or heart rhythm abnormalities.

Donna Hill Howes, RN
Family Practitioner

Side effects may include headaches, dizziness, general weakness, fatigue, flushing, nose and throat inflammation, changes in heart rate, skin rash, swelling of the legs or feet, nausea, constipation, and diarrhea. 

This answer was adapted from Sharecare's award-winning AskMD app. Start a consultation now to find out what's causing your symptoms, learn how to manage a condition, or find a doctor. 

Continue Learning about Antihypertensive

What are possible side effects of beta blockers?
Dr. Egilius L. Spierings, MDDr. Egilius L. Spierings, MD
Side effects of beta blockers can include fatigue, dizziness, cold hands and feet, exercise intolera...
More Answers
What should I know before taking candesartan?
Donna Hill Howes, RNDonna Hill Howes, RN
It is not known whether candesartan is safe or effective for children and adolescents under age 18. ...
More Answers
What side effects does Olmesartan and Hydrochlorothiazide cause?
MediGuardMediGuard
Based on information from iGuard.org, a free medication monitoring service, 20% of patients experien...
More Answers
Do thiazide diuretics have any side effects?
Brad AdkinsBrad Adkins
Thiazides are a class of medications which work in the kidneys to increase the amout of salt and wat...
More Answers

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.