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What is Cardura?

Cardura is a medication known as an alpha-adrenergic blocker, which works by relaxing the arteries and veins so that blood can pass through them more easily. Cardura can also relax the muscles in the neck of the bladder and the prostate gland so that it is easier to urinate if you have an enlarged prostate. Cardura can also have a positive impact on reducing blood pressure and cholesterol at the same time. It comes in the form of a modified release capsule, enabling the active ingredients to be slowly absorbed by the body.

When is Cardura used?

Cardura tablets can be used both on their own or with other drugs for the treatment of high blood pressure, otherwise known as hypertension. Lowering high blood pressure can help with the prevention of heart attacks, strokes, kidney problems and other serious conditions. This medication works by relaxing blood vessels so that blood can flow more easily throughout the body.

Cardura is also used in some cases by men for the treatment of an enlarged prostate gland, sometimes referred to as benign prostatic hyperplasia or BPH. Cardura tablets do not reduce the size of the prostate, but they do work to relax the muscles in various parts of the bladder, so you can more easily pass urine. Cardura can help to assist with issues such as weak urine streams and the need to urinate urgently in the middle of the night.

How do you use Cardura?

Cardura comes in modified release capsule tablets, so rather than all of the medication being released at once, patients get a small amount of medicine at a time released into their blood stream. This ensures that the effects of the Cardura tablets can last longer, and have a better impact on your blood pressure.

Cardura comes with a patient leaflet which you should read carefully before you begin taking the medication. It is also important to read the medication leaflet enclosed with Cardura tablets every time that you get a repeat prescription from your pharmacist, as various ingredients in a medication can sometimes change, or new studies could be released.

Cardura tablets should be swallowed, either with or without food depending on the advice of your doctor. Cardura tablets are usually taken once a day, and may cause a sudden drop in your blood pressure at times, so you should monitor your blood pressure.

Most doctors and medical professionals will recommend that you take your first dose of Cardura at bedtime to reduce your chances of injuries caused by fainting or dizziness while awake. Cardura tablets can be started at a very low dose and then gradually increased over time if you respond favourable to the medication.

What dosages are there?

The dosage of Cardura provided will be based on your response to treatment and medical condition. Usually, you will start on a low dose of Cardura and work your way up. Make sure that you take this medication regularly to ensure that you get the most benefit from it. To ensure that you remember to take Cardura tablets correctly, you may need to set an alarm and take them at the same time every day.

If you stop taking Cardura and need to start again, you should not start with the medication at the same dose that you were using before. Your doctor will once again need to see how you respond to treatment in case your condition has changed. Cardura is a medication that needs to be taken on a long-term basis. You will need to continue taking Cardura tablets even if you begin to feel healthy. Most people who suffer from high blood pressure do not feel unwell at first.

Usually, most people taking Cardura will experience some benefits from the medication within two weeks of using it. You will need to tell your doctor if your condition worsens or does not improve within two weeks, as you may need a higher dose, or you might need a different kind of treatment. Cardura is only one form of medication for BPH or high blood pressure, and other options can be suggested.

What are the side effects Cardura?

Although Cardura tablets are well tolerated by most people, they can sometimes cause side effects, as different people respond to medications in different ways. You may only have side effects when you first begin taking Cardura tablets, and then stop experiencing these problems once you get used to the medication. On the other hand, you may find that your side effects persist, which means that you need to seek medical advice.

Cardura can cause drowsiness, lightheadedness, dizziness and unusual feelings of tiredness caused by a sudden drop in your blood pressure. Your doctor or consultant may ask you to take Cardura tablets at bedtime so that you are less likely to experience an injury caused by these side effects. You should tell your doctor straight away if you experience any other severe side effects, including:

  • Shortness of breath;
  • Fainting;
  • Weakness;
  • Swollen feet or hands;
  • Yellowing of the skin or eyes;
  • Dark urine;
  • Easy bruising or bleeding;
  • High temperature,
  • (Persistent) sore throat.

Seek immediate medical attention if you experience severe chest pain when taking Cardura as this could be a sign of a severe heart response. In very rare situations, males taking Cardura tablets could experience a prolonged erection lasting longer than four hours. If this happens, seek medical help immediately.

Severe allergic reactions to Cardura are rare. However, you should get medical help immediately if you experience side effects that include swelling around the tongue, lips or throat, a rash or trouble with your breathing.

When should you not use Cardura?

Before you begin using Cardura tablets, inform your doctor or consultant if you have any allergies, including those that are caused by external substances other than Cardura, which could have inactive ingredients in it that cause allergic reactions.

Before you use this medication, it is important to answer any questions that your consultant has about your medical history, particularly issues with your heart such as congestive heart failure, heart attacks or angina. Also inform your doctor or consultant about any liver disease issues that you or your close family members might have suffered from.

Remember that this medication can sometimes cause you to feel drowsy or dizzy if you get a sudden drop in your blood pressure when taking it. It is a good idea to avoid any other substances that may also cause a feeling of drowsiness. Older adults are more likely to experience side effects when taking this drug, particularly in regard to dizziness and the side effects caused by low blood pressure.

If your doctor or consultant thinks that you are at a greater risk of having side effects when taking Cardura tablets, they may ask you to get regular check-ups to ensure that you are responding well to the medication and do not need to change to a different drug. Cardura should only be used by pregnant or breastfeeding women when it is clearly needed, and women should discuss their options with their doctor.

Does Cardura interact with other medications?

Cardura may interact with medications that you take for various other conditions. This could mean that you have a higher risk of suffering from problems that you are trying to treat with your existing medications. Drug interactions may also lead to a higher chance of negative side effects.

It is important to inform your consultant of any other substances that you are using before you begin taking Cardura tablets. This includes the medications that have been prescribed to you by a doctor, and drugs that are given over the counter or have herbal contents. This medication should not be taken with other drugs that are intended to lower your blood pressure, as it could lead to a severe drop in blood pressure.

If you are taking drugs for the treatment of hypertension or erectile dysfunction, then there is also a risk that your blood pressure could become too low which will increase your chances of dangerous side effects. Cardura could be affected by medications such as macrolide antibiotics, which change the way that certain medications are removed from your body. Some products also contain ingredients that raise your blood pressure. You should tell a consultant about any products you are using, purely for safety’s sake.

Where can you buy Cardura?

Following a consultation, you will be able to purchase Cardura tablets through one of our partner pharmacies.

Can I get Cardura without a prescription?

Cardura tablets cannot be purchased without a prescription.

Sources, online, 2020, “Cardura” [Accessed 15 January 2020], Available on:

Mayo Clinic, online, 2020, “Doxazosin (Oral Route)”[Accessed 15 January 2020], Available on:

Medline plus, 2020, online, “Doxazosin” [Accessed 15 January 2020], Available on:

Patient Leaflet(s)

Reviewed by:

Dr Imran Malik, General practitioner Registrationnumber: GMC: 4741365 Last checked: 17-08-2023 | Still valid

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