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Calcium Channel Blockers

Calcium channel blockers (CCBs) are a category of medication prescribed to treat high blood pressure, angina (chest pain) and heart rhythm abnormalities.

Calcium channel blockers keep calcium from entering the muscle cells of your heart and blood vessels. This allows blood vessels to relax, and your blood pressure goes down.

Clinical Uses

Calcium channel blockers are not usually prescribed as a first-line treatment for people with high blood pressure who have no other forms of heart disease. Instead, they are used as a when other medications have failed to provide sufficient blood pressure control.

Calcium channel blockers may be prescribed for the initial treatment for people who have high blood pressure, AND angina and/or a high risk of stroke. In such cases, the are usually prescribed in combination with other medications.

These medicationa are not prescribed for people with heart failure.

Types of Calcium Channel Blockers

There are various forms of CCBs available, including:

Side Effects

Common side effects from the use of calcium channel blockers include the following:


Call your doctor if you have any of these signs:

Read the Medication Guide you receive with your prescription for a complete list of  usage instructions and side effects.

Reference: U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services