Verapamil - Benefits, dosage and side effects

Verapamil is a drugto treat hypertension, angina, or certain heart rhythm disorders, such as atrial fibrillation or supraventricular arrhythmias. Verapamil or or verapamil hydrochloride should only be used with a doctor's prescription.

Verapamil is a potassium antagonistcalcium channel blockers) which works by blocking the flow of calcium into heart cells and blood vessels, so that blood vessels relax and blood flow becomes smoother.

This way of working will help lower blood pressure, increase the supply of blood and oxygen to the heart, and reduce the workload of the heart. Verapamil can also inhibit the spread of abnormal electrical signals in the heart muscle, so it can be used to treat certain heart rhythm disorders.

Verapamil trademark: Isoptin, Isoptin SR, Tarka, Verapamil HCL

What's that Verapamil

groupPrescription drugs
CategoryCalcium antagonist
BenefitTreat hypertension, certain types of arrhythmias, or angina
Used byAdults and children
Verapamil for pregnant and lactating womenCategory C:Animal studies have shown adverse effects on the fetus, but there are no controlled studies in pregnant women.

Drugs should only be used if the expected benefit outweighs the risk to the fetus.

Verapamil can be absorbed into breast milk. If you are breastfeeding, do not use this medicine without consulting your doctor.

Drug formTablets and caplets

Warning Before Taking Verapamil

Verapamil should not be used carelessly. Before taking verapamil, you need to pay attention to the following things:

  • Tell your doctor about any allergies you have. Verapamil should not be taken by someone who is allergic to this drug.
  • Tell your doctor if you have kidney disease, liver disease, myasthenia gravis, muscular dystrophy, congestive heart failure, or a heart rhythm disorder.
  • Tell your doctor if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or planning a pregnancy.
  • Tell your doctor if you are taking certain supplements, herbal products, or medications.
  • If you are planning to undergo certain medical procedures, such as surgery or dental surgery, tell your doctor that you are taking verapamil.
  • See your doctor right away if you have an allergic drug reaction, serious side effect, or overdose after taking verapamil.

Dose and Rules of Use Verapamil

The dose of verapamil is determined based on the age, condition of the patient, and the body's response to the drug. The following is the dosage of verapamil based on the patient's condition:

Condition: High blood pressure (hypertension)

  • Mature: Initial dose 240 mg, 2-3 times daily. The maximum dose is 480 mg daily.
  • Children aged 2 years: 20 mg, 2-3 times daily.
  • Children aged 2 years and over: 40–120 mg, 2–3 times daily.

Condition: Supraventricular arrhythmias

  • Mature: 120–480 mg, 3-4 times daily, or depending on the response and severity of the patient's condition.
  • Children aged 2 years: 20 mg, 2-3 times daily.
  • Children aged 2 years and over: 40–120 mg, 2–3 times daily.

Condition: Angina pectoris

  • Mature: 80–120 mg, 3 times daily. The dose may be increased to no more than 480 mg daily.

Method Taking Verapamil Correctly

Take verapamil according to the doctor's advice and don't forget to read the information on the drug packaging. Do not increase or decrease the dose, and do not use the drug for more than the recommended time.

Verapamil can be taken before or after meals. Swallow the medicine with the help of a glass of water. Do not crush, chew, or split the medicine, as this may affect the effectiveness of the medicine.

Take verapamil at the same time each day for effective treatment. If you forget to take verapamil, take it immediately if the break with the next consumption schedule is not too close. If it is close, ignore it and do not double the dose.

Avoid eating or drinking juice grapefruit while taking verapamil, because it can increase the risk of side effects.

Check your blood pressure regularly while taking verapamil to monitor your body's condition and your body's response to the drug.

Please note that this drug can help control blood pressure, arrhythmias, and angina, but cannot cure them. To help control blood pressure, you also need to maintain an ideal body weight, exercise regularly, and limit the consumption of foods that are high in salt.

Store verapamil in a dry, closed place, away from direct sunlight. Keep this medicine out of reach of children.

Verapamil Interactions with Other Drugs

The following are interactions that can occur if you take verapamil with other medicines:

  • Increased levels of verapamil if taken with erythromycin, ritonavir, or cimetidine
  • Decreased levels of verapamil if taken with rifampicin, phenobarbital, or sulfinpyrazone
  • Elevated levels of digoxin, propranolol, terazosin, immunosuppressant drugs, simvastatin, quinidine, carbamazepine, theophylline, midazolam, or buspirone
  • Increased risk of neurological disorders when used with lithium
  • Increased risk of developing low blood pressure (hypotension) if used with diuretics or antihypertensive drugs

Verapamil Side Effects and Dangers

Some of the side effects that can occur after taking verapamil are:

  • Nauseous
  • Headache or dizziness
  • Constipation
  • Fatigue
  • Slow heart rate
  • Low blood pressure

Check with your doctor if the side effects above do not subside. Immediately see a doctor if there is an allergic reaction to the drug which can be characterized by symptoms such as the appearance of an itchy and swollen rash, swollen eyelids and lips, or difficulty breathing.

In addition, you should also see a doctor immediately if you experience more serious side effects, such as:

  • Chest pain or heart palpitations
  • Swelling in the legs or feet
  • Weight gain fast
  • Shortness of breath or wheezing
  • Unusual fatigue
  • Persistent nausea or vomiting, jaundice, loss of appetite, or very severe abdominal pain
  • Dizzy until you want to faint