What is Captopril?Captopril is used alone or with other medications to treat high blood pressure or chronic heart failure. In addition, Captopril is used to improve survival in certain people who have suffered heart attacks and have heart failure. Captopril may also be used to treat kidney disease in diabetic patients.
What is the most important information I should know about Captopril?If you have high blood pressure, you must take Captopril regularly for it to be effective. Since blood pressure declines gradually, it may be several weeks before you get the full benefit of Captopril. You must continue taking it even if you are feeling well. Captopril does not cure high blood pressure; it merely keeps it under control.
Captopril can cause injury or death to an unborn baby if taken after the third month of pregnancy. If you become pregnant, or think you may be pregnant while taking Captopril, stop taking Captopril immediately and tell your doctor right away.
Captopril can cause a rare but serious allergic reaction leading to extreme swelling of the face, lips, tongue, throat, or gut (causing severe abdominal pain). You may have an increased risk of experiencing these symptoms if you have ever had an allergy to angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors. Notify your doctor immediately if you notice any of these symptoms.
Captopril may rarely cause a yellowing of the skin or eyes (jaundice), which can be a sign of liver injury. If this occurs, tell your doctor immediately.
Who should not take Captopril?Do not use Captopril if you are allergic to the product or to any other ACE inhibitors.
What should I tell my doctor before I take the first dose of Captopril?Tell your doctor about all prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal medications you are taking before beginning treatment with Captopril. Also, talk to your doctor about your complete medical history, especially if you have diabetes; liver, kidney, or heart disease; blood vessel problems; bone marrow problems; history of stroke, recent heart attack, or kidney transplant; autoimmune disease (for example, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, scleroderma); or if you have ever had an allergy or sensitivity to an ACE inhibitor such as Captopril. In addition, tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.
What is the usual dosage?The information below is based on the dosage guidelines your doctor uses. Depending on your condition and medical history, your doctor may prescribe a different regimen. Do not change the dosage or stop taking your medication without your doctor's approval.
Adults: The initial dose is 25 milligrams (mg) two or three times daily. If satisfactory reduction of blood pressure has not been achieved after 1 or 2 weeks, the dose may be increased to 50 mg two or three times daily. The maximum recommended daily dose is 450 mg.
Adults: The initial dose is 25 mg three times a day. Your doctor may increase your dose if satisfactory results have not been achieved. A daily dosage of 450 mg should not be exceeded.
After a Heart Attack
Adults: The usual starting dose is 6.25 mg, taken once, followed by 12.5 mg three times a day. Your doctor will increase the dose over the next several days to 25 mg three times a day and then, over the next several weeks, to 50 mg three times a day.
Kidney Disease in Diabetes
Adults: The usual dose is 25 mg three times a day.
How should I take Captopril?Captopril should be taken 1 hour before meals. Take Captopril exactly as prescribed. Suddenly stopping it could cause your blood pressure to increase.
What should I avoid while taking Captopril?Captopril may cause you to become drowsy or less alert. Avoid driving or participating in any potentially hazardous activity. Avoid dehydration because this may cause a drop in blood pressure. Do not use potassium-containing salt substitutes while taking Captopril. Heart failure patients on Captopril therapy should not rapidly increase physical activity.
What are possible food and drug interactions associated with Captopril?If Captopril is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your doctor before combining Captopril with the following: allopurinol, aspirin, blood pressure drugs known as beta-blockers, cyclosporine, digoxin, diuretics, lithium, nitroglycerin, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, potassium preparations, and certain diuretics (water pill).
What are the possible side effects of Captopril?Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, tell your doctor as soon as possible. Only your doctor can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking this drug.
Side effects may include: itching, loss of taste, low blood pressure, rash
Call your doctor if you have persistent, dry cough; sore throat; swelling of the face around your lips, tongue, throat, or arms and legs; yellow coloring of your skin or eyes.
Can I receive Captopril if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?Captopril may cause injury and even death to the developing baby when used in pregnancy during the second and third trimesters. If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant, contact your doctor immediately. Captopril appears in breast milk and could affect a nursing infant. If Captopril is essential to your health, your doctor may advise you to discontinue breastfeeding until your treatment is finished.
What should I do if I miss a dose of Captopril?Take it as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the one you missed and go back to your regular schedule. Do not take two doses at once.
How should I store Captopril?Store at room temperature in a tightly closed container, away from moisture.
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