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Nimodipine is used in the treatment of subarachnoid haemorrhage

How it works

Nimodipine is a calcium channel blocker. It blocks the action of calcium on the blood vessel of the brain. This prevents changes in brain function after bleeding around the brain (subarachnoid hemorrhage).

Common side effects

Headache, Nausea, Decreased blood pressure, Slow heart rate

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Expert advice

  • It is very common to have dizziness, lightheadedness, swelling ankles/feet, flushing, or a headache as a side effect.
  • To lower your risk of dizziness and lightheadedness, get up slowly when rising from a sitting or lying position.
  • Inform your doctor if your symptoms do not improve or if it worsens (for example, your blood pressure readings remain high or increase, chest pain continues or worsens). 
  • Inform your doctor immediately if any of these serious side effects occur: fast/irregular/pounding heartbeat, fainting.
  • Use this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, take it at the same time each day. It is important to continue taking this medication even if you feel well.
  • If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose.

Frequently asked questions


Q. How does nimodipine work/prevent vasospasm?
Nimodipine relaxes and widens the blood vessels so that blood can flow easily through them thereby improving the blood supply to the brain, and preventing vasospasm (reflex narrowing of blood vessels caused by bleeding)
Q. What is nimodipine?
Nimodipine is used to prevent further damage to/changes in brain function after subarachnoid haemorrhage (bleeding around the brain).

Content on this page was last updated on 28 April, 2017, by Dr. Varun Gupta (MD Pharmacology)