What is Catapres?

Catapres (clonidine) is a medication that was originally approved to treat high blood pressure. It works by decreasing the amount of norepinephrine, a chemical messenger in the brain. Catapres has also been found to be effective in treating hot flashes associated with menopause.

Catapres

What are the benefits of Catapres?

The main benefit of Catapres is that it can help to relieve hot flashes associated with menopause. In addition, Catapres may also help to reduce high blood pressure.

What are the risks of Catapres?

The most common side effect of Catapres is drowsiness. Other potential side effects include dry mouth, constipation, and dizziness. Catapres may also cause low blood pressure, which can be dangerous for some people. If you experience any serious side effects, you should stop taking Catapres and speak to your doctor immediately.

Pharmacokinetics:

After oral administration, clonidine is rapidly absorbed from the gastrointestinal tract with peak concentrations occurring within 1 to 2 hours. The bioavailability of clonidine is about 50%. Clonidine is widely distributed throughout the body with a volume of distribution of approximately 3 L/kg. Clonidine undergoes extensive metabolism in the liver by conjugation and oxidation. The major metabolites are inactive. Clonidine is excreted in the urine primarily as conjugates. The elimination half-life of clonidine is 12 hours.

Mechanism of Action:

The antihpertensive effect of conidine results from stimulation of alpha-adrenergic receptors in the brain stem which reduces sympathetic outflow to the peripheral vessels, resulting in a decrease in total peripheral resistance and blood pressure. Clonidine also has central nervous system (CNS) actions similar to those of other centrally acting alpha-agonist drugs. These include sedation, reduction in autonomic outflow, reduction in motor activity, and changes in seizure threshold. In addition, clonidine suppresses renin release from juxtaglomerular cells.

Dosages:

The usual starting dose of Catapres is 0.1 mg taken two or three times per day. The dose may be increased gradually as needed to a maximum of 0.6 mg per day. Catapres should be taken at regular intervals and should not be missed. If you miss a dose, you should take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, you should skip the missed dose and continue with your regular dosing schedule. You should not take two doses at the same time.

Long-term effects:

Catapres may cause several long-term effects, including drowsiness, constipation, and dizziness. Catapres may also cause low blood pressure, which can be dangerous for some people. If you experience any serious side effects, you should stop taking Catapres and speak to your doctor immediately.

Interactions:

Catapres may interact with other medications, including blood pressure medications, tricyclic antidepressants, and barbiturates. You should speak to your doctor about all potential interactions before taking Catapres.

Pregnancy and breastfeeding:

Catapres is not recommended for use during pregnancy unless the benefits outweigh the risks. If you are pregnant or planning a pregnancy, you should speak to your doctor about the possible risks of taking Catapres. It is not known if Catapres passes into breast milk. If you are breastfeeding, you should speak to your doctor about the possible risks of taking Catapres.

What else should I know about Catapres?

Catapres is a medication that was originally approved for the treatment of high blood pressure. Catapres is also sometimes used to treat hot flashes associated with menopause. Catapres should be taken at regular intervals and should not be missed. If you miss a dose, you should take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, you should skip the missed dose and continue with your regular dosing schedule. You should not take two doses at the same time. Catapres may interact with other medications, including blood pressure medications, tricyclic antidepressants, and barbiturates. You should speak to your doctor about all potential interactions before taking Catapres.