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nitroglycerin (transdermal)

Pronunciation: NYE troe GLIS er in

Brand: Minitran, Nitrek, Nitro TD Patch-A, Nitro-Dur

What is the most important information I should know about nitroglycerin transdermal?

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You should not use this medication if you are allergic to nitroglycerin, isosorbide mononitrate (Imdur), or isosorbide dinitrate (BiDil, Isordil).

Before using nitroglycerin transdermal, tell your doctor if you have congestive heart failure, low blood pressure, glaucoma, anemia, or a history of heart attack, stroke, or head injury.

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Do not use this medication to treat an angina attack that has already begun. It will not work fast enough.

Nitroglycerin transdermal can cause severe headaches, especially when you first start using it. Do not stop using the skin patches, and ask your doctor before using any headache pain medication.

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Nitroglycerin may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be alert.

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Call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as worsening chest pain, pain spreading to the arm or shoulder, nausea, vomiting, sweating, blurred vision and dry mouth, or fainting.

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Drinking alcohol can increase certain side effects of nitroglycerin.

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The nitroglycerin transdermal patch may burn your skin if you wear the patch during an MRI (magnetic resonance imaging). Remove the patch before undergoing such a test.

What is nitroglycerin transdermal?

Nitroglycerin is in a group of drugs called nitrates. Nitroglycerin dilates (widens) blood vessels, making it easier for blood to flow through them and easier for the heart to pump.

Nitroglycerin transdermal is used to prevent attacks of chest pain (angina).

Nitroglycerin transdermal may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before using nitroglycerin transdermal?

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You should not use this medication if you are allergic to nitroglycerin, isosorbide mononitrate (Imdur), or isosorbide dinitrate (BiDil, Isordil). Do not use nitroglycerin transdermal if you are allergic to any type of adhesive on a bandage or other transdermal skin patch.

To make sure you can safely use nitroglycerin, tell your doctor if you have any of these other conditions:

  • congestive heart failure;
  • a history of heart attack, stroke, or head injury;
  • low blood pressure;
  • glaucoma; or
  • anemia (lack of red blood cells).
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FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether nitroglycerin will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medication.

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It is not known whether nitroglycerin transdermal passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How should I use nitroglycerin transdermal?

Use exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.

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Do not use nitroglycerin transdermal to treat an angina attack that has already begun. It will not work fast enough. Your doctor may prescribe an oral form of nitroglycerin (tablet, capsule, spray) to treat an angina attack. Talk with your doctor if any of your medications do not seem to work as well in treating or preventing angina attacks.

The nitroglycerin transdermal skin patch is usually worn for 12 to 14 hours and then removed. A new patch is put on after a "patch-free" period of 10 to 12 hours. Your doctor may want you to wear the patch for longer or shorter periods of time. Follow your doctor's instructions carefully.

Apply the skin patch to a clean, dry, hairless area of the body, below your neck and above your knees or elbows. To remove any hair from these skin areas, clip the hair short but do not shave it.

Press the patch onto the skin and press it down firmly with your fingers. Make sure it is well sealed around the edges.

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Wash your hands after applying a nitroglycerin transdermal skin patch.

If the patch falls off, try sticking it back on. If you replace the patch with a new one, leave it on only for the rest of your wearing time. Do not change your patch removal schedule.

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After removing a skin patch fold it in half, sticky side in, and throw it away in a place where children or pets cannot get to it. Keep both used and unused nitroglycerin skin patches out of the reach of children or pets.

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Do not stop using this medication without your doctor's advice, even if you feel better. You may have increased angina attacks if you stop using the medication suddenly.

If you need to have any type of surgery or dental work, tell the surgeon or dentist ahead of time that you are using nitroglycerin transdermal.

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The nitroglycerin transdermal patch may burn your skin if you wear the patch during an MRI (magnetic resonance imaging). Remove the patch before undergoing such a test.

Tell any doctor or other healthcare provider who treats you that you are using nitroglycerin transdermal. If you need emergency heart resuscitation, your family or caregivers should tell emergency medical personnel if you are wearing a nitroglycerin skin patch. The patch should be removed before any electrical equipment (such as a defribrillator) is used on you.

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Store at room temperature, away from moisture and heat. Keep each skin patch in its sealed pouch until you are ready to use it.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Apply a patch as soon as you remember, and keep it on for the rest of your wearing time without changing your patch removal schedule. If you miss a dose and it is almost time to apply your next patch, wait until then to apply the patch and skip the missed dose.

Do not use extra patches to make up a missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

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Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

Overdose symptoms may include a severe throbbing headache, confusion, fever, fast or pounding heartbeats, dizziness, vision problems, nausea, vomiting, bloody diarrhea, trouble breathing, cold or clammy skin, feeling light-headed, fainting, seizure (convulsions), or blue-colored skin, lips, or nails.

What should I avoid while using nitroglycerin transdermal?

Avoid using nitroglycerin transdermal on irritated or broken skin.

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Nitroglycerin may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be alert.

Avoid getting up too fast from a sitting or lying position, or you may feel dizzy. Get up slowly and steady yourself to prevent a fall.

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Drinking alcohol can increase certain side effects of nitroglycerin.

What are the possible side effects of nitroglycerin transdermal?

Nitroglycerin transdermal can cause severe headaches, especially when you first start using it. These headaches may gradually become less severe as you continue to use nitroglycerin transdermal. Do not stop using the medication. Ask your doctor before using any headache pain medication.

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Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

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Call your doctor at once if you have a serious side effect such as:

  • worsening chest pain, slow heart rate;
  • feeling like you might pass out;
  • chest pain or heavy feeling, pain spreading to the arm or shoulder, nausea, sweating, general ill feeling;
  • fast or pounding heartbeats; or
  • blurred vision and dry mouth.

Less serious side effects may include:

  • mild skin rash or itching;
  • warmth, redness, or tingly feeling under your skin;
  • nausea, vomiting, upset stomach; or
  • feeling nervous, weak, or dizzy.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What other drugs will affect nitroglycerin transdermal?

Tell your doctor about all other medications you use, especially:

  • blood pressure medication or diuretics (water pills);
  • cold or allergy medicines, diet pills, or over-the-counter pain medicine such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin) or naproxen (Aleve);
  • an erectile dysfunction medication such as sildenafil (Viagra), tadalafil (Cialis), or vardenafil (Levitra);
  • migraine headache medication such as ergotamine (Ergomar, Cafergot, Migergot), dihydroergotamine (D.H.E. 45, Migranal), or methylergonovine (Methergine);
  • a beta-blocker such as atenolol (Tenormin, Tenoretic), carvedilol (Coreg), labetalol (Normodyne, Trandate), metoprolol (Dutoprol, Lopressor, Toprol), nadolol (Corgard), propranolol (Inderal, InnoPran), sotalol (Betapace), and others; or
  • heart or blood pressure medicine such as amlodipine (Norvasc, Caduet, Exforge, Lotrel, Tekamlo, Tribenzor, Twynsta), diltiazem (Cartia, Cardizem), nifedipine (Nifedical, Procardia), verapamil (Calan, Covera, Isoptin, Verelan), and others.

This list is not complete and other drugs may interact with nitroglycerin. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

Your pharmacist can provide more information about nitroglycerin transdermal.


Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

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