Minoxidil is used to reduce high blood pressure in patients who do not respond to other therapies. Furthermore, it is used to treat hair loss.


What is Minoxidil?

Minoxidil is a vasodilator drug. It works by relaxing the blood vessels and allowing blood to flow more easily. This way, blood pressure can be steadily reduced.


How should Minoxidil be taken?

In case of high blood pressure, minoxidil is typically administered orally. In case of hair loss, the drug should be applied locally via topical medication. 


Side effects associated with Minoxidil

When taken orally, minoxidil may cause serious cardiac problems. Among the other possible side effects of Minoxidil include the following:


  • Hair changes
  • Excessive hair growth
  • Slight weight gain
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting


You should contact a doctor immediately if you experience:


  • Rash
  • Urticaria
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Tightness in the chest
  • Swelling of the mouth, face, lips or tongue
  • Impaired vision or hearing
  • Dizziness
  • Rapid and extreme weight gain
  • Fainting
  • Fast, heavy or irregular heartbeat
  • Feeling faint or lightheaded
  • Pain in the chest, arms or shoulders
  • Severe indigestion
  • Shortness of breath
  • Swelling


Contraindications and warnings associated with the use of Minoxidil

Minoxidil may affect the ability to drive or operate dangerous machinery. It may also cause dangerous dizziness when standing up too quickly (especially in the morning after getting up).  These side effects can be aggravated by alcohol, other medicines, high temperatures, fever and strenuous physical exercise.


Before starting treatment with Minoxidil, it is important to tell your doctor if:

  • You have any allergies to the active substance, its excipients or any other drugs or food
  • You are taking any other medications, herbal remedies or supplements. Mentioning in particular: guanethidine
  • You are suffering (or have suffered) from bloodstream problems, congestive heart failure, tumors or pheochromocytoma
  • You have recently suffered from a heart attack
  • You are currently on dialysis
  • You are pregnant or breast-feeding