Digestive Diseases and Sciences

, Volume 56, Issue 8, pp 2404–2408 | Cite as

Nicorandil Associated Colonic Ulceration: Case Series of an Increasingly Recognized Complication

  • Bee C. Lee
  • Patrick B. Allen
  • Grant R. Caddy
  • Inder Mainie
Original Article



Nicorandil is widely accepted in the therapeutic armamentarium of ischemic heart disease and, although nicorandil-induced oral and anal ulcerations have been established in the literature, only five cases have reported the possibility of nicorandil-induced ulceration elsewhere in the gastrointestinal tract. There have been recent case reports which have suggested the possible causative association between nicorandil and colonic ulceration, either in isolation or in combination with anal ulceration.


We report a case series of eight patients prescribed with nicorandil therapy presenting with gastrointestinal symptoms and subsequently diagnosed with colonic ulceration on colonoscopy.


Eight patients were identified (five female, three male). Colonoscopic findings varied from solitary to multiple colonic ulcers. No concomitant oral or anal ulcerations were noted in these patients. Biopsies from the ulcers showed only non-specific inflammation. Cessation of nicorandil therapy resulted in resolution of symptoms and complete healing of colonic ulcers.


Nicorandil therapy appears to be an emerging etiology in the development of idiopathic colonic ulceration and therefore should be considered as a differential diagnosis in a selected group of patients.


Nicorandil Colon Ulcer Colonic ulceration 


Conflict of interest

All authors declare that they have no competing interests, and have no relationship with any manufacturer or industrial company producing or associated with the drug described in this case series.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bee C. Lee
    • 1
  • Patrick B. Allen
    • 2
  • Grant R. Caddy
    • 3
  • Inder Mainie
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of GastroenterologyDowne Hospital, South Eastern Health and Social Care TrustDownpatrickNorthern Ireland, UK
  2. 2.Department of GastroenterologyBelfast City Hospital, Belfast Health and Social Care TrustBelfastNorthern Ireland, UK
  3. 3.Department of GastroenterologyUlster Hospital, South Eastern Health and Social Care TrustDundonald, BelfastNorthern Ireland, UK

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