clonidine (oral) (Catapres, Kapvay, Kapvay Dose Pack)

Brand Names: Catapres, Kapvay, Kapvay Dose Pack

Generic Name: clonidine (oral) (Pronunciation: KLOE ni deen)

What is clonidine (Catapres, Kapvay, Kapvay Dose Pack)?

Clonidine lowers blood pressure by decreasing the levels of certain chemicals in your blood. This allows your blood vessels to relax and your heart to beat more slowly and easily.

Clonidine is used to treat hypertension (high blood pressure). The Kapvay brand of clonidine is used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

Clonidine may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

Catapres 0.1 mg

oval, tan, imprinted with Bl6

Catapres 0.2 mg

oval, orange, imprinted with BI7

Catapres 0.3 mg

oval, peach, imprinted with BI11

Clonidine 0.1 mg-ESI

round, blue, imprinted with LL, C 42

Clonidine 0.1 mg-MUT

round, yellow, imprinted with MP 657

Clonidine 0.1 mg-MYL

round, white, imprinted with MYLAN 152

Clonidine 0.1 mg-PUR

round, orange, imprinted with R127

Clonidine 0.2 mg-MUT

round, white, imprinted with MP 658

Clonidine 0.2 mg-MYL

round, white, imprinted with MYLAN 186

Clonidine 0.2 mg-PUR

round, orange, imprinted with 128, R

Clonidine 0.3 mg-MUT

round, green, imprinted with MP 659

Clonidine 0.3 mg-MYL

round, white, imprinted with MYLAN 199

What are the possible side effects of clonidine (Catapres, Kapvay, Kapvay Dose Pack)?

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • fast or pounding heartbeats, tremors;
  • a very slow heart rate (fewer than 60 beats per minute);
  • feeling short of breath, even with mild exertion;
  • swelling, rapid weight gain;
  • confusion, hallucinations;
  • flu symptoms;
  • urination problems; or
  • feeling like you might pass out.

Other common side effects may include:

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

What is the most important information I should know about clonidine (Catapres, Kapvay, Kapvay Dose Pack)?

Before you take clonidine, tell your doctor if you have heart disease or severe coronary artery disease, a heart rhythm disorder, slow heartbeats, low blood pressure, a history of heart attack or stroke, kidney disease, or if you have ever had an allergic reaction to a clonidine transdermal skin patch (Catapres TTS).

Do not take two forms of clonidine at the same time.

If you need surgery, tell the surgeon ahead of time that you are using clonidine. You may need to stop using the medicine for a short time.

Do not stop using clonidine suddenly, or you could have unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. Ask your doctor how to safely stop using clonidine.

If you are being treated for high blood pressure, keep using this medication even if you feel well. High blood pressure often has no symptoms. You may need to use blood pressure medication for the rest of your life.

Clonidine may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be alert.

What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking clonidine (Catapres, Kapvay, Kapvay Dose Pack)?

You should not take this medication if you are allergic to clonidine.

To make sure clonidine is safe for you, tell your doctor if you have:

  • heart disease or severe coronary artery disease;
  • heart rhythm disorder, slow heartbeats;
  • low blood pressure;
  • a history of heart attack or stroke;
  • pheochromocytoma (tumor of the adrenal gland);
  • kidney disease; or
  • if you have ever had an allergic reaction to a clonidine transdermal skin patch (Catapres TTS).

FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether clonidine will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medication.

Clonidine can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Do not take this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Do not give Kapvay to a child younger than 6 years old.

How should I take clonidine (Catapres, Kapvay, Kapvay Dose Pack)?

Follow all directions on your prescription label. Your doctor may occasionally change your dose to make sure you get the best results. Do not take this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.

Do not take two forms of clonidine at the same time.

Clonidine may be taken with or without food.

Shake the oral suspension (liquid) well just before you measure a dose. Measure the liquid with a special dose-measuring spoon or medicine cup. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.

Do not crush, chew, or break an extended-release tablet. Swallow it whole.

If you need surgery, tell the surgeon ahead of time that you are using clonidine. You may need to stop using the medicine for a short time.

Do not stop using clonidine suddenly, or you could have unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. Ask your doctor how to safely stop using clonidine.

If you are being treated for high blood pressure, keep using this medication even if you feel well. High blood pressure often has no symptoms. You may need to use blood pressure medication for the rest of your life.

Store at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and light.

What happens if I miss a dose (Catapres, Kapvay, Kapvay Dose Pack)?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose (Catapres, Kapvay, Kapvay Dose Pack)?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

Overdose symptoms may include high blood pressure (severe headache, blurred vision, buzzing in your ears, anxiety, confusion, chest pain, shortness of breath) followed by low blood pressure (feeling light-headed, fainting), cold feeling, shallow breathing, weakness, fainting, or pinpoint pupils.

What should I avoid while taking clonidine (Catapres, Kapvay, Kapvay Dose Pack)?

Avoid becoming overheated or dehydrated during exercise and in hot weather.

Drinking alcohol can increase certain side effects of clonidine.

Clonidine may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be alert.

What other drugs will affect clonidine (Catapres, Kapvay, Kapvay Dose Pack)?

Taking clonidine with other drugs that make you sleepy or slow your breathing can increase these effects. Ask your doctor before taking clonidine with a sleeping pill, narcotic pain medicine, muscle relaxer, or medicine for anxiety, depression, or seizures.

Tell your doctor about all medicines you use, and those you start or stop using during your treatment with clonidine, especially:

This list is not complete. Other drugs may interact with clonidine, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible interactions are listed in this medication guide.

Where can I get more information?

Your pharmacist can provide more information about clonidine.


Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.

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