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Nicotinyl Alcohol (Systemic)

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Nicotinyl Alcohol (Systemic)

Canadian Brand Names

• Roniacol


Nicotinyl (nik-oh-TIN-ill) alcohol belongs to the group of medicines called vasodilators. Vasodilators increase the size of blood vessels and are used to treat problems resulting from poor blood circulation.

Nicotinyl alcohol is available without a prescription, in the following dosage form:


    • Extended-release tablets (Canada)

Special Considerations

If you are taking this medicine without a prescription, carefully read and follow any precautions on the label. For nicotinyl alcohol, the following should be considered:


Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to nicotinyl alcohol. Also tell your health care professional if you are allergic to any other substances, such as foods, preservatives, or dyes.


Studies on effects in pregnancy have not been done in either humans or animals.


It is not known whether nicotinyl alcohol passes into breast milk. However, this medicine has not been reported to cause problems in nursing babies.

Older adults

Many medicines have not been studied specifically in older people. Therefore, it may not be known whether they work exactly the same way they do in younger adults or if they cause different side effects or problems in older people. There is no specific information comparing use of nicotinyl alcohol in the elderly with use in other age groups. However, nicotinyl alcohol may reduce tolerance to cold temperatures in elderly patients.

Other medicines

Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. Tell your health care professional if you are taking any other prescription or nonprescription (over-the-counter [OTC]) medicine, or if you smoke.

Other medical problems

The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of nicotinyl alcohol. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

    • Angina (chest pain) or

    • Diabetes mellitus (sugar diabetes) or

    • Heart attack (recent) or

    • Stomach ulcer or

    • Stroke (recent)-Nicotinyl alcohol can make your condition worse

    • Glaucoma or

    • High cholesterol levels-The chance of side effects may be increased


Nicotinyl alcohol tablets should be swallowed whole. Do not break, crush, or chew the tablets before swallowing them.


The dose of nicotinyl alcohol will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label . The following information includes only the average doses of nicotinyl alcohol. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so:

    • For oral dosage forms (tablets):

      o Adults: 150 to 300 milligrams two times a day, taken in the morning and evening.

Missed dose

If you miss a dose of this medicine, take it as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.


To store this medicine:

    • Keep out of the reach of children.

    • Store away from heat and direct light.

    • Do not store in the bathroom, near the kitchen sink, or in other damp places. Heat or moisture may cause the medicine to break down.

    • Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed. Be sure that any discarded medicine is out of the reach of children.


It may take some time for this medicine to work. If you feel that the medicine is not working, do not stop taking it on your own. Instead, check with your doctor.

The helpful effects of this medicine may be decreased if you smoke.

Side Effects

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor as soon as possible if any of the following side effects occur:


Swelling of feet or lower legs; yellow eyes or skin.

Other side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. However, check with your doctor if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome:

More common

Flushing; warmth or tingling.

Less common or rare

Diarrhea; dizziness or faintness; increased hair loss; nausea and vomiting; skin rash.

Other side effects not listed above may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your doctor.

April 06, 1993

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