Cortiazem - Use | Dosage | Side Effects

This article was medically reviewed by M.Pharm, Marko Tanaskovic on August 12, 2018. To read more about an author, click here.

Cortiazem is a medicine that contains active substance called diltiazem. This medicine blocks calcium channels and leads to dilation of blood vessels (vasodilation). Dilation of blood vessels facilitates blood flow, therefore reducing blood pressure. This is why it is used to treat high blood pressure and angina pectoris.


It cannot be used in the following conditions:

  • Patients with AV (atrioventricular) block I, II or III level. Cortiazem can slow the heart rate and may lead to heart failure in these patients.
  • In patients allergic to the active substance (diltiazem) or other similar medicines:
    • nifedipine,
    • nicardipine,
    • amlodipine,
    • verapamil and others.
  • Patients with cardiogenic shock.
  • Hypotension (low blood pressure).
  • In patients with slow heart rate (bradycardia). It may further slow the heart rate and cause cardiac arrest.

It cannot be used concomitant with grapefruit, alcoholic beverages, or St. John's wort because these foods may change the efficacy of Cortiazem.

It can be used only with great caution in patients with liver or kidney disorders as well as in the patients with depression.

Cortiazem should be used for as long as your doctor recommended because high blood pressure usually causes no symptoms. However, it is very important that your blood pressure be within a healthy range, to reduce the risk of heart attack or stroke! In addition to using Cortiazem, your doctor will probably recommend you to change your life style:

  • You need to exercise at least half an hour per day
  • Stop smoking
  • Avoid stress
  • Increase your intake of fruits, vegetables, fish meat
  • Avoid greasy, fatty and spicy foods

Use during pregnancy and breastfeeding

Cortiazem is not recommended for use in pregnant women. It can be used during pregnancy only if the benefit to the mother outweighs the risk to the child.

Avoid breastfeeding your baby while using Cortiazem, because it can passes into breast milk and may harm your baby.

How to use

Condition (Indication) Dose
High blood pressure (hypertension) 90 mg every 12 hours (twice daily)
Angina pectoris 90 mg every 12 or 8 hours (2-3 times daily)
Unstable angina pectoris 90-180 mg every 12 or 8 hours (2-3 times daily)

The maximum daily dose should not exceed 480 mg per day. You should take Cortiazem with a glass of water. Do not crush or chew the tablet, but swallow them whole.

It is not recommended for use in children.

Do not use grapefruit, St. John's wort or alcohol beverages while using Cortiazem.

Avoid getting up too quickly from a lying position while using Cortiazem, because it may cause a sudden dizziness and low blood pressure. If you experience dizziness, you need to know that such a patient should be placed in the lying position and raise his hands and feet. Tell your doctor if you are feeling dizzy.

Use with other medicines (Interactions)

Diltiazem should not be used in combination with the following medicines:

  • Dantrolene, a medicine used in the treatment of so-called malignant fever (tumor fever) and to treat muscle spasms.
  • Amiodarone, a medicine used to treat heart rhythm disorders.
  • Medications used to treat high blood pressure, so-called beta-blockers such as:
    • propranolol,
    • bisoprolol,
    • metoprolol,
    • atenolol,
    • nebivolol and others. Concomitant use Cortiazem with these medicines can cause cardiac arrest!
  • Alpha blockers such as:
    • prazosin,
    • terazosin,
    • doxazosin and others.
  • Nitrates such as:
    • pentaerythrityl tetranitrate,
    • isosorbide dinitrate,
    • nitroglycerin and others. These medicines are used in the treatment of angina pectoris.
  • Statins, medicines used to treat high cholesterol such as:
    • pravastatin,
    • fluvastatin,
    • rosuvastatin,
    • lovastatin,
    • atorvastatin,
    • simvastatin (Cholipam).
  • Corticosteroids, used to treat inflammation such as:
    • methyl prednisolone (Lemod Solu),
    • prednisolone,
    • dexamethasone and others.
  • Medicines used to treat epilepsy such as:
    • phenytoin,
    • phenobarbital,
    • carbamazepine.
  • Medicines used in the treatment of bacterial and fungal infections such as:
    • erythromycin,
    • clarithromycin,
    • rifampicin,
    • itraconazole,
    • voriconazole,
    • ketoconazole.
  • Benzodiazepines used as a tranquilizers such as:
    • midazolam,
    • alprazolam,
    • triazolam and others.

Cortiazem cannot be used in combination with alcoholic beverages, grapefruit and St. John's wort.

Side effects

Cortiazem may cause the following side effects:
  1. headache,
  2. flushing,
  3. dizziness,
  4. bradycardia (slow heart rate),
  5. hypotension (low blood pressure),
  6. liver damage (dark urine, loss of appetite, severe nausea, persistent vomiting, jaundice-yellowing of the skin and eyes),
  7. diarrhea,
  8. insomnia,
  9. mood changes (anxiety),
  10. allergy and others.

Tell your doctor if you experience any side effect.

Information on this website are provided for educational purposes only and are not intended for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other health-care professional.

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