Psoriasis Home > Cyclosporine Side Effects

Possible Side Effects

Cyclosporine has been studied extensively in clinical trials. In these studies, the side effects that occurred in a group of people taking cyclosporine were carefully documented and then compared to the side effects that occurred in a group of people taking a different medication or a placebo (a sugar pill that does not contain any active ingredients). As a result, it was possible to see what side effects occurred, how often they appeared, and how they compared to the other groups.
In these clinical studies, the most commonly observed side effects of cyclosporine included:
  • Tremors -- in up to 55 percent of people
  • Increased blood pressure (hypertension) -- up to 53 percent
  • Excessive dark, coarse facial or body hair growth -- up to 45 percent
  • Kidney problems -- up to 38 percent
  • Headaches -- up to 25 percent
  • Infections of any kind -- up to 25 percent
  • Nausea -- up to 18 percent
  • Overgrowth of gum tissue -- up to 16 percent
  • Abdominal (stomach) pain -- up to 15 percent
  • High triglycerides (a type of fat found in the blood) -- up to 15 percent
  • Body pain -- up to 13 percent
  • Diarrhea -- up to 13 percent
  • Leg cramps -- up to 12 percent
  • Tingling, pricking, or a numbing sensation of the skin -- up to 11 percent
  • Nausea and vomiting -- up to 10 percent.
Other common side effects, occurring in 1 to 7 percent of people, included:
  • Sinus congestion
  • Swelling (edema) of the body
  • A rash
  • Heartburn or indigestion
  • Dizziness
  • Coughing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Sudden warmth and redness of the face and neck (flushing)
  • Acne
  • Chest pain
  • Breast swelling
  • Joint or muscle pain
  • Fatigue
  • Gas
  • Hair loss (alopecia)
  • Insomnia
  • Flu-like symptoms
  • Migraine
  • Uncontrollable shaking
  • Cramps
  • Decreased appetite
  • Increased sensitivity to touch
  • Brittle fingernails
  • Hiccups
  • Ringing of the ears.
Written by/reviewed by:
Last reviewed by: Kristi Monson, PharmD;
Last updated/reviewed:
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