Calcium channel blockers: pharmacology and place in therapy of pediatric hypertension

Pediatr Nephrol. 2000 Dec;15(3-4):302-16. doi: 10.1007/s004670000480.


The calcium channel blockers (CCBs) are a diverse group of antihypertensive medications with variable pharmacokinetics and clinical effects. Although CCBs have been widely applied to the treatment of hypertensive children, data regarding the pharmacokinetics, efficacy and safety of these agents in children are extremely limited. In this review we briefly summarize the mechanism of action of CCBs and then summarize pertinent pharmacokinetic information on each of the CCBs commonly used in children, including amlodipine, diltiazem, felodipine, isradipine, intravenous nicardipine, nifedipine and verapamil. Clinically important drug interactions and adverse effects are discussed, as well as the potential role of CCBs in renal protection. Available pediatric efficacy and safety data are summarized, and recommendations made regarding the rational use of CCBs in the management of pediatric hypertension.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Calcium Channel Blockers / adverse effects
  • Calcium Channel Blockers / pharmacokinetics
  • Calcium Channel Blockers / pharmacology
  • Calcium Channel Blockers / therapeutic use*
  • Calcium Channels / metabolism
  • Calcium Channels / physiology
  • Child
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / drug therapy*


  • Calcium Channel Blockers
  • Calcium Channels