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Classification: A

Drug products: Amolita, Asasantin Retard, Asasantin® Retard, Attia, Diprasorin, Dipyridamol "Actavis", Dipyridamol Alternova, Dipyridamole, Persantin, Persantin Boehringer Ingelheim Ltd, Persantin® Depot

ATC code: B01AC07, B01AC30

Substances: dipyridamole


Combination therapy with dipyridamole and low dose aspirin as secondary prevention after ischemic stroke or transitory ischemic attack (TIA) losers the risk of cardiovascular ischemic events similarly for men and women.

Headache has been shown to be more common in women treated with dipyridamole in combination with low dose aspirin.

Additional information

Pharmacokinetics and dosing

No studies with a clinically relevant sex analysis regarding the pharmacokinetics or dosing of dipyridamole have been found.


The first European Stroke Prevention Study (ESPS-1) showed similar results in men and women; reduction in death and stroke was 30% and 32%, respectively. The prevention of secondary ischemic lesions was seen in both sexes, though women tended  to have a better prognosis after a primary lesion and their vascular lesions appeared at a later date [1]. Other RCTs, ESPS-2 and ESPRIT also showed lowered risk of stroke in men and women. However, in all studies fewer women than men were included [2-4].

Adverse effects

Several studies have shown that dipyridamole-induced headache is more common in women than in men, and more common in younger age groups. Dipyridamole was given in combination with low-dose acetylsalicylic acid. The mechanisms behind the headache are unknown but might be similar to the mechanisms causing headache in migraine when using nitrates or other vasodilating treatment [4, 5].

Reproductive health issues

Regarding teratogenic aspects, please consult Janusmed Drugs and Birth Defects (in Swedish, Janusmed fosterpåverkan).

Updated: 2020-08-28

Date of litterature search: 2019-02-08


  1. Lowenthal A. Secondary prevention of myocardial infarction in the first European Stroke Prevention Study. Thromb Res Suppl. 1990;12:59-63. PubMed
  2. Diener HC, Cunha L, Forbes C, Sivenius J, Smets P, Lowenthal A. European Stroke Prevention Study 2 Dipyridamole and acetylsalicylic acid in the secondary prevention of stroke. J Neurol Sci. 1996;143(1):1-13. PubMed
  3. Sivenius J, Laakso M, Penttilä IM, Smets P, Lowenthal A, Riekkinen PJ. The European Stroke Prevention Study: results according to sex. Neurology. 1991;41(8):1189-92. PubMed
  4. ESPRIT Study Group, Halkes PH, van Gijn J, Kappelle LJ, Koudstaal PJ, Algra A. Aspirin plus dipyridamole versus aspirin alone after cerebral ischaemia of arterial origin (ESPRIT): randomised controlled trial. Lancet. 2006;367:1665-73. PubMed
  5. Lökk J. Dipyridamole-associated headache in stroke patients--interindividual differences?. Eur Neurol. 2009;62:109-13. PubMed
  6. Läkemedelsstatistik. Stockholm: Socialstyrelsen. 2017 [cited 2019-01-30.] länk

Authors: Linnéa Karlsson Lind

Reviewed by: Mia von Euler

Approved by: Karin Schenck-Gustafsson