Compare Calan vs. Prazosin

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Calan
(Verapamil)

Minipress
(Prazosin)

Lowers blood pressure and controls heart rate. Verapamil works well to lower blood pressure and prevent chest pain, but you have to be okay with avoiding alcohol. You can't miss doses, and you might get persistent swelling.Lowers blood pressure and makes it easier to urinate. Prazosin is used mostly to make urination easier for men with an enlarged prostate, but it can cause dizziness.
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Reviews & ratings
Button Group. All currently active
Button Group. All currently active
3.761904761904762Calan
Reviews for Calan (Verapamil)
33%
of people say Calan (Verapamil) is worth it
31%
say it works well
21%
say it's a big hassle
Reviews for Minipress (Prazosin)
43%
+10% vs. Calan (Verapamil)
28%
3% vs. Calan (Verapamil)
15%
+6% vs. Calan (Verapamil)
Side effects
CalanPrazosin

The Calan FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.

More about Calan side effects »

The Prazosin FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.

More about Prazosin side effects »
How it works
CalanPrazosin
Verapamil is a calcium channel blocker. It lowers blood pressure by slowing your heart rate and relaxing your blood vessels. Your heart gets more oxygen and doesn't have to work as hard to pump, which can relieve chest pain.Prazosin is a selective alpha blocker. It lowers blood pressure by relaxing blood vessels. It also relaxes the urethra and prostate, which makes it easier to urinate.
Type of medication
CalanPrazosin
Antihypertensive
Calcium channel blocker
Prescription only
Antihypertensive
Alpha blocker
Prescription only
Available as
CalanPrazosin
  • Pill
  • Extended release
  • Delayed release capsule
  • Pill
Used for (click to learn more)
CalanPrazosin
Risk factors for serious side effects
CalanPrazosin
  • Severe left ventricular dysfunction (ejection fraction <30%)
  • Taking beta-blockers
    • History of liver disease
    • History of kidney disease
    • History of liver disease
    Detailed Calan (Verapamil) risks & warnings »
    • Age 65 years or older
    Detailed Minipress (Prazosin) risks & warnings »
    Pregnancy category
    CalanPrazosin
    CFDA pregnancy category (Weigh risks vs. benefits)

    Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

    See the FDA package insert
    CFDA pregnancy category (Weigh risks vs. benefits)

    Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

    See the FDA package insert
    Alcohol
    • Not a good medication for you if you drink alcohol.
    • Don't drink too much alcohol while taking this medicine.
    No specific alcohol-related info.
    Food
    No specific food-related info.
    • Take with food or at bedtime to avoid side effects.
    Kidneys and liver
    • Your doctor may monitor your heart to see if changes to its electrical system may occur, especially if you have had liver or kidney disease in the past.
    No specific kidneys and liver-related info.
    Sex
    No specific sex-related info.No specific sex-related info.
    Sleep
    No specific sleep-related info.
    • Helps people with PTSD get better sleep with fewer, less-intense nightmares.
    • Can cause drowsiness, headache, dizziness, and nausea.
    Weight
    No specific weight-related info.No specific weight-related info.
    Upsides and benefits
    CalanPrazosin
    • A first-choice blood pressure treatment for many people.
    • Calcium channel blockers work especially well for African Americans to lower blood pressure.
    • You can take it alone or with other medicines to help lower blood pressure.
    • Lowers the risk of heart attack and stroke.
    • Prevents heart-related chest pain (angina) if you take it regularly.
    • Treats certain abnormal heart rhythms.
    • Can be added to other blood pressure-lowering medicines if you need additional blood pressure control.
    • Makes urination easier in men with an enlarged prostate.
    • Helps people with PTSD get better sleep with fewer, less-intense nightmares.
    Downsides and risks
    CalanPrazosin
    • Calcium channel blockers can cause swelling in your limbs. If this happens for you, it probably won't get better over time, so talk to your doctor about alternatives if it bothers you.
    • Women are more likely to have side effects (especially swelling) from Verapamil than men.
    • You can't miss doses. Stopping Verapamil suddenly can cause your blood pressure to go up suddenly, which raises the risk of heart attack and stroke.
    • Not a good medication for you if you drink alcohol.
    • Not the best medicine to lower blood pressure by itself.
    • Likely to cause orthostatic hypotension. This means dizziness when you change positions (like standing up) because your blood pressure doesn't adjust quickly enough.
    • Not preferred for people 65 years or older.
    Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
    CalanPrazosin
    • Interacts with grapefruit and the cholesterol medicine Simvastatin.
    • Can cause constipation and headache.
    • Don't drink too much alcohol while taking this medicine.
    • Your doctor might do routine blood tests to check your liver function.
    • Check your blood pressure 1 week after starting this medicine, and tell your doctor if it hasn't improved.
    • Can cause drowsiness, headache, dizziness, and nausea.
    • Take with food or at bedtime to avoid side effects.
    • If side effects don't go away, talk to your doctor about alternatives.
    • Recheck your blood pressure 1 week after starting this medicine.
    • Check your blood pressure 1 week after starting this medicine, and tell your doctor if it hasn't improved.
    Learn more
    More about CalanSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
    More about PrazosinSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert