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Q. Can Nitroglycerin patch prolong life of an elderly person?

Answered by
Dr. Vedprakash Verma
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on Oct 16, 2018

Hello doctor,

My 96-year-old mother is getting to where she only eats breakfast. She has hearing loss and is blind. Does the Nitroglycerin patch she is using will prolong her life? She is miserable and ready to go. She is sleeping a lot and had three seizures two weeks back. She has refused to go to the hospital.

Dr. Vedprakash Verma

General Medicine Internal Medicine


Welcome to

As you mentioned, your mother has deafness and blindness, you did not mention why she is using Nitrogen glycerine patches. It is only useful when the patient is suffering from heart disease with recurrent anginal chest pain (heart attack), but it is used to reduce BP also. It is for symptomatic uses, related only with the condition, cannot use without indication. If you will give me details about her diabetic or hypertension status and current BP, pulse rate, then I can help you in a better way.

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Thank you doctor,

She had a heart attack and the stents were put in when she was in her early seventies. Her blood pressure is 122/58, and pulse is 59. My mother is not diabetic.

Dr. Vedprakash Verma

General Medicine Internal Medicine


Welcome back to

So, she is suffering from heart diseases, she is suffering from seizure also, with altered sensorium, which clearly suggestive of brain stroke due to cardiac embolism. In this condition, you can do two things. Go for urgent CT brain plain which will rule out a stroke or brain infarcts. Start tablet Levocetram 500 mg BD. Continue monitoring BP, pulse. If BP goes down, do not continue Nitroglycerine patch.

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