Published: 8 April 2024

Safety Information

Monitoring communication

Patients should NOT stop using any medicine or medical device subject to a monitoring communication. If you have any concerns with a medicine or medical device you are using, please contact your healthcare professional. A monitoring communication does not mean that the medicine or medical device causes an adverse event.

M2 logo Calcium channel blockers and the possible risk of new-onset eczema

8 April 2024

Monitoring closes 8 October 2024

Medsafe is highlighting a possible risk of new-onset eczema with the use of calcium channel blockers (CCBs). The aim of this communication is to encourage further reporting to obtain more information on this potential safety concern.

This potential safety concern was triggered by a report received by the Centre for Adverse Reactions Monitoring (CARM). The report (CARM ID 148006) describes a 69-year-old male patient who was prescribed felodipine for hypertension. Several years after initiating treatment he was diagnosed with adult-onset eczema associated with calcium channel blocker use.

Products affected
More information
Medsafe's actions
Reporting adverse events

Products affected

Table 1: Calcium channel blockers – products and sponsors

Product name* Sponsor
Vasorex REX Medical Limited
Cardizem CD Pharmacy Retailing NZ Ltd
Diltiazem CD Clinect NZ Pty Limited
Dilzem Douglas Pharmaceuticals Limited
Plendil ER AstraZeneca Limited
Felo ER Viatris Limited
Nyefax Retard Douglas Pharmaceuticals Limited
Nimotop Bayer New Zealand Limited
Isoptin Viatris Limited

* The table only lists approved CCB products that currently have a published data sheet . However, this monitoring communication applies to all CCBs.

CCBs are used to treat hypertension (high blood pressure) and angina (tightness or pain in the chest). Verapamil is also used to treat arrhythmia (irregular heartbeat).1

More information

Eczema, also called dermatitis, is an itchy inflammatory condition of the epidermis (the outer layer of the skin). The clinical features of new-onset eczema include redness, swelling, the formation of bumps or blisters, oozing and weeping of the skin.2 

Currently, the CCB data sheets list some signs and symptoms associated with eczema (itching, redness) but not eczema.

As of 18 March 2024, CARM has received six reports of eczema where the suspect medicine was a CCB. Of these reports, five were associated with felodipine and one with diltiazem.

See the consumer medicine information (CMI) and data sheet for advice on how to take these medicines and the known side effects.

Search for consumer medicine information and data sheets

Medsafe’s actions

We are placing this safety concern on the Medicines Monitoring (M2 Logo) scheme to encourage reporting of new-onset eczema with calcium channel blockers.

Reporting adverse events

Please report adverse events to medicines (side effects) to CARM. Anyone can submit a report.


  1. New Zealand Formulary (NZF). 2023. NZF v141: Calcium-channel blockers 1 March 2024. URL: (accessed 20 March 2024).
  2. Coulson I. 2022. Dermatitis. In: DermNet April 2022. URL: (accessed 20 March 2024).
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