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Back to Cardiology Drug index

Back to Calcium channel blockers

Name: Isradipine

Pregnancy Category C

Drug classes

  • Calcium channel-blocker
  • Antihypertensive

Therapeutic actions

Inhibits the movement of calcium ions across the membranes of cardiac and arterial muscle cells; calcium is involved in the generation of the action potential in specialized automatic and conducting cells in the heart and in arterial smooth muscle and excitation-contraction coupling in cardiac muscle cells; inhibition of transmembrane calcium flow results in the depression of impulse formation in specialized cardiac pacemaker cells, slowing of the velocity of conduction of the cardiac impulse, the depression of myocardial contractility, and the dilation of coronary arteries and arterioles and peripheral arterioles. These effects lead to decreased cardiac work, cardiac energy consumption, and blood pressure.


Management of hypertension alone or in combination with thiazide-type diuretics


Contraindicated in the presence of allergy to isradipine; sick sinus syndrome, except in presence of ventricular pacemaker; heart block (second or third degree); IHSS; cardiogenic shock, severe CHF; pregnancy; lactation.

Use caution in the presence of hypotension, impaired hepatic or renal function (repeated doses may accumulate).

Adverse effects

  • CNS: Dizziness, vertigo, emotional depression, sleepiness, headache
  • GI: Nausea, constipation
  • CV: Peripheral edema, hypotension, arrhythmias, bradycardia, AV heart block
  • Other: Muscle fatigue, diaphoresis
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