) is a prescription medication used to treat certain types of chest pain (angina
Brand-name Procardia is made by Pfizer, Inc. Generic Procardia
is made by various manufacturers.
Different Forms of Procardia
This article focuses on regular (short-acting) Procardia. In addition to regular Procardia, there is also a long-acting form, called Procardia XL.
(Click Procardia XL for more information on the long-acting form of this medication.)
Procardia is part of a class of drugs called calcium channel blockers
. It helps slow down the rate at which calcium
moves into your heart and into the walls of the blood vessels. This, in turn, helps to relax the vessels, which allows better blood flow and makes it easier for the heart to pump blood.
There are two basic types of calcium channel blockers, dihydropyridine and non-dihydropyridine. The most important difference between the two types is that non-dihydropyridine calcium channel blockers can slow down the heart rate, while dihydropyridine calcium channel blockers do not. Procardia is a dihydropyridine calcium channel blocker, which means that it does not usually decrease the heart rate. In fact, Procardia can actually increase the heart rate.