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Nicergoline is used in the treatment of disorders of brain that affect memory and body balance. It is also used for treatment of various disorders of blood vessels of brain and eyes and severe headaches (migraines).

How it works

Nicergoline is an ergot alkaloid derivative and is vasoactive drug. It acts via multiple mechanisms which mainly include:
  • dilation of the blood vessels to improve blood flow (by blocking adrenergic alpha 1 receptors).
  • inhibition of platelet aggregation (that is involved in clot formation that can affect blood flow).
  • improving transmission of neurological signals.
  • increasing utilization of glucose and oxygen.

Common side effects

Gastrointestinal discomfort, Decreased blood pressure, Diarrhoea, Dizziness, Hot flashes, Feeling of discomfort, Nausea, Abnormal blood vessels on the surface of the iris, Sleepiness


Expert advice

  • Nicergoline tablets should be preferably taken between meals to improve its absorption (the process by which the drug enters blood circulation after oral ingestion).
  • Do contact your doctor before taking nicergoline if you have porphyria (a rare blood pigment disorder that affects skin and other organs) or high blood pressure and are receiving medication to lower it (antihypertensive drugs).
  • Do consult your doctor before taking nicergoline if you are pregnant, planning to become pregnant or breastfeeding.

Frequently asked questions


Q. Is nicergoline FDA approved?
No. Nicergoline is not approved by the US- Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Q. What is nicergoline used for?
Nicergoline is a vasoactive drug that is used in disorders related to blood vessels in the brain (including vascular dementia), eye (including macular degeneration, diabetic retinopathy) and other parts of the body (including Raynaud’s syndrome, migraine) that impair the blood flow to these organs and affect their functioning.

Content on this page was last updated on 28 September, 2016, by Dr. Varun Gupta (MD Pharmacology)