Cardizem SR is a prescribed oral medication indicated to treat high blood pressure (hypertension) and chest pain (angina) caused by reduced blood flow to the heart. It contains the active ingredient diltiazem, which belongs to a class of drugs called calcium channel blockers. It works by relaxing the blood vessels in the body and heart, making it easier for blood to flow. This effect helps lower blood pressure and reduce the workload of the heart.
Use and Dosage
Cardizem SR is a tablet taken orally, with or without food, usually twice a day or as prescribed by your doctor. The tablet must be swallowed whole and should not be crushed or chewed during consumption.
Your doctor may adjust your dosage, based on your medical condition, response to treatment, and other medications you may be taking. To ensure the maximum benefit of Cardizem SR, you should take it regularly at the same time each day, even if you are feeling well.
If the tablet is prescribed to treat angina, take it regularly for it to be effective. Other medications like nitroglycerin can be used to relieve angina attacks but use them only as directed by your doctor.
It may take two weeks for the Cardizem SR tablet to work effectively. If your condition persists or worsens, or if your blood pressure readings remain high, inform your doctor immediately. Also, in case you use other medications like prescription drugs, non-prescription drugs, or herbal remedies, ensure you inform your doctor and pharmacist about it.
Common Side Effects of Cardizem SR (Diltiazem SR):
- Flushing (warmth redness or tingly feeling)
- Sore throat
- Stuffy nose
- Tired feeling
- Upset stomach
Serious Side Effects of Cardizem SR (Diltiazem SR):
- Mental/mood changes (such as depression agitation)
- Shortness of breath
- Slow/irregular/pounding/fast heartbeat
- Swelling of ankles or feet
- Unexplained or sudden weight gain
- Unusual dreams
- Unusual tiredness
Forms and Strength
Cardizem SR (Diltiazem SR) is available in the following forms and strength:
Cardizem SR: Tablet
- 60 mg
- Hypotension: Cardizem SR may cause a decrease in blood pressure, which can lead to dizziness, lightheadedness, or fainting. Have regular blood pressure checks and notify your doctor if you experience any of these symptoms.
- Heart problems: Cardizem SR may cause or worsen heart problems, especially in patients with congestive heart failure or heart rhythm disorders. Inform your doctor if you have a history of heart problems before taking Cardizem SR.
- Liver function: Cardizem SR is metabolized by the liver, so people with liver problems may need to be monitored more closely for side effects. Inform your doctor if you have liver disease.
- Kidney function: Diltiazem may accumulate in people with kidney problems, so they may need to be monitored more closely for side effects. Inform your doctor if you have kidney disease.
- Pregnancy and breastfeeding: Cardizem SR should be used with caution in pregnant or breastfeeding women, as the safety and efficacy of the drug have not been established in these populations.
- Allergic reaction: Some people may be allergic to diltiazem, and may experience symptoms such as rash, itching, swelling, or trouble breathing. Seek immediate medical attention if you notice any of these symptoms.
- Grapefruit juice: Diltiazem interacts with grapefruit juice and may increase the risk of side effects. Avoid drinking grapefruit juice while taking Cardizem SR.
- Other medications: Cardizem SR may interact with other medications, including other blood pressure medications, anti-seizure medications, and antidepressants. Inform your doctor of all medications you are taking before starting Cardizem SR.
- Driving and operating machinery: Cardizem SR may cause dizziness or drowsiness, which can impair your ability to drive or operate machinery. Avoid these activities until you know how you respond to the medication.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Can I stop taking Cardizem SR suddenly?
No, you should not stop taking Cardizem SR suddenly without first consulting with your doctor. Abruptly stopping the medication can cause an increase in blood pressure and other unpleasant side effects.
Can Cardizem SR make me gain weight?
Weight gain is a rare side effect of Cardizem SR, but it is possible. If you experience sudden or unexplained weight gain while taking the medication, notify your doctor.
How long does it take for Cardizem SR to start working?
Cardizem SR can start working within a few hours of taking the first dose, but it may take several weeks for the full effects of the medication to be seen.
Can Cardizem SR be taken with food?
Yes, Cardizem SR can be taken with food or immediately after a meal.