Intravenous nicardipine for the treatment of severe hypertension. A double-blind, placebo-controlled multicenter trial

Arch Intern Med. 1989 Dec;149(12):2662-9.


A placebo-controlled, double-blind multicenter trial was conducted in 123 patients with severe hypertension to examine the efficacy and safety of intravenously administered nicardipine hydrochloride in controlling blood pressure. Seventy-three patients were initially randomized to receive nicardipine treatment. This group had an initial blood pressure of 213 +/- 3/126 +/- 2 mm Hg. Sixty-seven patients achieved the therapeutic goal (diastolic blood pressure less than or equal to 95 mm Hg; systolic blood pressure less than or equal to 160 mm Hg). Fifty patients were randomized to receive placebo solution. Blood pressure in these patients was 216 +/- 3/125 +/- 2 mm Hg. No patient in this group achieved the therapeutic goal during the "blinded" portion of the study. Forty-four of 49 patients who did not respond to placebo administration responded to subsequent treatment with nicardipine. Patients with end-organ damage were included in the study. These included patients with left ventricular hypertrophy, retinopathy, and renal insufficiency. Patients with and without end-organ damage responded equally well to nicardipine treatment. Serious adverse experiences were infrequent, the most common adverse reaction being headache in 24% of the patients studied.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Multicenter Study
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Headache / chemically induced
  • Humans
  • Hypertension / drug therapy*
  • Hypertension / physiopathology
  • Hypotension / chemically induced
  • Infusions, Intravenous
  • Kidney / physiopathology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Multicenter Studies as Topic
  • Nicardipine / adverse effects
  • Nicardipine / blood
  • Nicardipine / therapeutic use*
  • Placebos


  • Placebos
  • Nicardipine