Nitroglycerin (rectal) – Uses & Side Effects

Nitroglycerin (rectal) is a nitrate that dilates (widens) blood vessels. It is used to treat moderate to severe pain caused by chronic anal fissures (tears in the skin lining your rectum).

You should not use nitroglycerin rectal if you have: severe anemia (a lack of red blood cells), or a brain injury, hemorrhage, or tumor.

You also should not use nitroglycerin if you are using medicine to treat pulmonary arterial hypertension (PAH), such as riociguat, (Adempas), sildenafil (Revatio), or tadalafil (Adcirca).

Do not take erectile dysfunction medicine (Viagra, Cialis, and others) while you are using nitroglycerin rectal, or you could have a sudden and serious decrease in blood pressure.

To make sure nitroglycerin is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:

  • Congestive heart failure;
  • A history of heart attack, stroke, or circulation problems;
  • Low blood pressure;
  • Migraine headaches; or
  • Liver disease.

It is not known whether nitroglycerin rectal will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medicine.

It is not known whether nitroglycerin rectal passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Nitroglycerin rectal is not approved for use by anyone younger than 18 years old.

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.

Side effects

Call your doctor at once if you have a light-headed feeling, like you might pass out.

Common side effects may include:

  • headache; or
  • dizziness

Keyword: nitroglycerin.

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