This medication is used to prevent chest pain (angina) in people with a certain heart condition (coronary artery disease). Nitroglycerin belongs to a class of drugs known as nitrates. Angina occurs when the heart muscle is not getting enough blood. This drug works by relaxing and widening blood vessels so blood can flow more easily to the heart.
This medication will not relieve chest pain once it occurs. It is also not intended to be used just before physical activities (such as exercise, sexual activity) to prevent chest pain. Other medications may be needed in these situations. Consult your doctor for more details.
Read the Patient Information Leaflet available from your pharmacist. Consult your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.
Remove the patch from its pouch, and peel off the protective clear liner as directed. Usually, you will wear the patch on the upper arm or chest. However, you can wear it anywhere on the body below the neck and above the knees or elbows. Apply the patch to a clean, dry, and hairless area. Hair in the area may be clipped, but not shaved. Avoid areas with cuts or irritation. Do not apply the patch immediately after bathing or showering. Wait until your skin is completely dry. However, you may bathe, shower, and swim while wearing the patch. Press the patch firmly in place with the palm of your hand. Wash your hands after applying the patch.
You will usually use 1 patch a day and wear it for 12 to 14 hours or as directed by your doctor. The dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment.
To reduce skin irritation, apply each new patch to a different area of skin. After removing the old patch, fold it in half with the sticky sides together, and discard out of reach of children and pets.
Use this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, use it at the same time each day.
Do not suddenly stop using this medication without consulting your doctor. Some conditions may become worse when the drug is suddenly stopped. Your dose may need to be gradually decreased.
Although unlikely, when this medication is used for a long time, it may not work as well and may require different dosing. Tell your doctor if this medication stops working well (for example, you have worsening chest pain or it occurs more often).
Headache is often a sign that this medication is working. Your doctor may recommend treating headaches with an over-the-counter pain reliever (such as acetaminophen, aspirin). If the headaches continue or become severe, tell your doctor promptly.
To reduce the risk of dizziness and lightheadedness, get up slowly when rising from a sitting or lying position.
Remember that your doctor has prescribed this medication because he or she has judged that the benefit to you is greater than the risk of side effects. Many people using this medication do not have serious side effects.
Tell your doctor immediately if any of these unlikely but serious side effects occur: fainting, fast/irregular/pounding heartbeat.
A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is rare. However, seek immediate medical attention if you notice any of the following symptoms of a serious allergic reaction: rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing.
In the US -
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or to similar drugs (such as isosorbide mononitrate); or if you have any other allergies. This product may contain inactive ingredients, which can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your pharmacist for more details.
This medication should not be used if you have a certain medical condition. Before using this medicine, consult your doctor or pharmacist if you have: recent head injury.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist your medical history, especially of: anemia, low blood pressure, loss of too much body water (dehydration), other heart problems (such as recent heart attack).
This drug may make you dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do any activity that requires alertness until you are sure you can perform such activities safely. Limit alcoholic beverages.
Before having surgery, tell your doctor or dentist that you are using this medication.
If you are going to have an MRI test, tell testing personnel that you are using this patch. Some patches may contain metals that can cause serious burns during an MRI. Ask your doctor whether you will need to remove your patch before the test and apply a new patch afterward, and how to do so properly.
Older adults may be more sensitive to the side effects of this medication, especially dizziness and lightheadedness, which could increase the risk of falls.
During pregnancy, this medication should be used only when clearly needed. Discuss the risks and benefits with your doctor.
Your doctor or pharmacist may already be aware of any possible drug interactions and may be monitoring you for them. Do not start, stop, or change the dosage of any medicine before checking with your doctor or pharmacist first.
This drug should not be used with the following medications because very serious (possibly fatal) interactions may occur: drugs used to treat erectile dysfunction-ED or pulmonary hypertension (such as sildenafil, tadalafil), riociguat.
If you are currently using any of these medications, tell your doctor or pharmacist before starting nitroglycerin.
Before using this medication, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all prescription and nonprescription/herbal products you may use, especially of: rosiglitazone, certain drugs to treat migraine headaches (ergot alkaloids such as ergotamine).
This medication may interfere with certain laboratory tests (including blood cholesterol levels), possibly causing false test results. Make sure laboratory personnel and all your doctors know you use this drug.
This document does not contain all possible interactions. Therefore, before using this product, tell your doctor or pharmacist of all the products you use. Keep a list of all your medications with you, and share the list with your doctor and pharmacist.
If overdose is suspected, contact a poison control center or emergency room immediately. US residents can call their local poison control center at 1-800-222-1222. Canada residents can call a provincial poison control center. Symptoms of overdose may include: slow heartbeat, vision changes, severe nausea/vomiting, sweating, cold/clammy skin, bluish fingers/toes/lips.
Do not share this medication with others.
Laboratory and/or medical tests (such as blood pressure monitoring) should be performed periodically to monitor your progress or check for side effects. Consult your doctor for more details.
Lifestyle changes such as dietary changes, exercise, and stopping smoking may help this drug work better. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist about lifestyle changes that might benefit you.
If you miss a dose, apply it as soon as you remember. If it is near the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not double the dose to catch up.
Store at room temperature between 68-77 degrees F (20-25 degrees C) away from light and moisture. Brief storage between 59-86 degrees F (15-30 degrees C) is permitted. Do not store in the bathroom. Keep all medicines away from children and pets.
Do not flush medications down the toilet or pour them into a drain unless instructed to do so. Properly discard this product when it is expired or no longer needed (See How to Use section).
MEDICAL ALERT: Your condition can cause complications in a medical emergency. For information about enrolling in MedicAlert, call 1-888-633-4298 (US) or 1-800-668-1507 (Canada).
Information last revised March 2014. Copyright(c) 2014 First Databank, Inc.
Sorry. No images are available for this medication.
With WebMD's Medicine Cabinet, you can check interactions with drugs.Go to medicine cabinet