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Pentoxifylline Prescription
Generic Name: pentoxifylline (pen tox I fi leen)
Brand Name: TRENtal, Pentoxil
Physician reviewed pentoxifylline patient information - includes pentoxifylline description, dosage and directions.
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Pentoxifylline Drug Information:

Pentoxifylline causes changes in your blood that help improve blood flow. This also helps your blood carry oxygen to your tissues and organs. Pentoxifylline is used to improve blood flow and reduce certain symptoms of a condition called intermittent claudication (IN-ter-MIT-ent KLOD-ih-KAY-tion). Pentoxifylline is not a cure for this condition. Pentoxifylline may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide. You should not use pentoxifylline if you have recently had any type of bleeding in your brain or the retina of your eye. Learn more

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Pentoxifylline Side Effects

In Summary

Commonly reported side effects of pentoxifylline include: dizziness and nausea. Other side effects include: dyspepsia and vomiting. See below for a comprehensive list of adverse effects.

For the Consumer

Applies to pentoxifylline: oral tablet extended release

Along with its needed effects, pentoxifylline 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 while taking pentoxifylline:


  • Chest pain
  • irregular heartbeat

Signs and symptoms of overdose (in the order in which they may occur)

  • Drowsiness
  • flushing
  • faintness
  • unusual excitement
  • convulsions (seizures)

Some side effects of pentoxifylline may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

Less common

  • Dizziness
  • headache
  • nausea or vomiting
  • stomach discomfort

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to pentoxifylline: compounding powder, oral tablet extended release


Pentoxifylline has been generally well tolerated. While typically minor, side effects have necessitated discontinuation of the drug in approximately 3% of treated patients. Tolerance to mild side effects generally has developed with continued use.


Gastrointestinal side effects have been the most common side effects associated with pentoxifylline therapy and have included dyspepsia, nausea, vomiting, and belching, which occurred in 1% to 3% of patients. Some smaller studies have reported gastrointestinal disturbance in up to 33% of patients treated with pentoxifylline.

Nervous system

Nervous system side effects have occurred in 1% to 2% of treated patients and have included headache, dizziness, insomnia, and tremor. Some smaller studies have reported nervous system adverse effects in up to 17% of treated patients. In addition, rare cases of visual and auditory hallucinations have been reported. Aseptic meningitis has been reported in postmarketing experiences.


Cardiovascular side effects have included reports of palpitations, flushing, and angina. These reports have usually been associated with higher doses of an immediate release capsule which is not available in the United States.


Hematologic side effects have included anecdotal reports of pancytopenia and fatal aplastic anemia.


Hepatic side effects have included postmarketing reports of cholestasis.


Hypersensitivity side effects have included postmarketing reports of anaphylactic reaction, anaphylactoid reaction, and anaphylactic shock.

Editorial References and Review

Medically reviewed by USARx EDITORIAL TEAM Last updated on 1/1/2020.

Source: Drugs.com Pentoxifylline (www.drugs.com/mtm/pentoxifylline.html).