The recommended treatment for chilblains doesn’t work

Nifedipine is widely used as a treatment for chilblains but the first randomised controlled trial of the vasodilator drug has shown it to be no better than placebo.

Dutch researchers compared the calcium channel blocker against placebo in 32 patients with chronic chilblains and found it had no benefit on symptoms or disability scores over six weeks of treatment.

Patients treated with nifedipine had an average 13mmHg lower systolic BP and higher rates of oedema compared to placebo, but no difference in chilblain symptoms such as pain and itch,