Clonidine, sold as the brand name Catapres among others, is a medication used to treat high blood pressure, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, drug withdrawal (alcohol, opioids, or smoking), menopausal flushing, diarrhea, and certain pain conditions. Clonidine is used to treat high blood pressure, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), drug withdrawal (alcohol, opioids, or smoking), menopausal flushing, diarrhea, and certain pain conditions. It can alleviate opioid withdrawal symptoms by reducing the sympathetic nervous system response such as tachycardia and hypertension, as well as reducing sweating, hot and cold flashes, and general restlessness. Clonidine also has several off-label uses, and has been prescribed to treat psychiatric disorders including stress, sleep disorders, and hyperarousal caused by post-traumatic stress disorder, borderline personality disorder, and other anxiety disorders. Clonidine has also been used to treat refractory diarrhea associated with irritable bowel syndrome, fecal incontinence, diabetes, withdrawal-associated diarrhea, intestinal failure, neuroendocrine tumors and cholera. The reduction in circulating norepinephrine by clonidine was used in the past as an investigatory test for phaeochromocytoma, which is a catecholamine-synthesizing tumour, usually found in the adrenal medulla. In a clonidine suppression test plasma catecholamine levels are measured before and 3 hours after a 0.3 mg oral test dose has been given to the patient. Though not used as much today as it was in the past, Catapres (clonidine) remains an important treatment option for some patients with mild to moderate hypertension, especially if they haven't had good blood pressure control with other medicines. While many high blood pressure medicines have some side effects involving the kidneys—which may change blood flow to the kidney or affect how the kidney filters waste from the blood—Catapres does not. This makes it especially useful for treating people who have high blood pressure along with some kind of kidney disease. Catapres belongs to a class of drugs called centrally acting alpha agonists. These drugs work by stimulating special receptors in the brain called alpha receptors. This causes a change in the body's hormone levels that leads to relaxation of the blood vessels, thus lowering blood pressure. There is another class of anti-hypertension medicines called alpha blockers, but these drugs work on different types of alpha receptors in different locations within the body. Because clonidine can cause salt and water retention, it is usually given along with a diuretic.
It’s available as a patch, an oral tablet, and an oral extended-release tablet. Clonidine extended-release tablets are available as the brand-name drug Kapvay. Clonidine extended-release tablets are used to treat symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). This drug may be used as part of a combination therapy. In some cases, they may not be available in every strength or form as the brand. That means you may need to take it with other drugs. Clonidine belongs to a class of drugs called centrally acting alpha-agonists. It isn’t known exactly how clonidine extended-release tablets work to reduce symptoms of ADHD. We do know that clonidine works in the part of the brain that helps regulate behavior, attention, and how we express emotion. However, this effect might go away the longer you take it. Mild side effects may go away within a few days or a couple of weeks. Talk to your doctor or pharmacist if they’re more severe or don’t go away. Your doctor will tell you how much of this medicine to use and how often. Your dose may need to be changed several times in order to find out what works best for you. Do not use more medicine or use it more often than your doctor tells you to. In addition to the use of this medicine, treatment for your high blood pressure may include weight control and changes in the types of foods you eat, especially foods high in sodium (salt). Your doctor will tell you which of these are most important for you. You should check with your doctor before changing your diet. Many patients who have high blood pressure will not notice any signs of the problem. It is very important that you take your medicine exactly as directed and that you keep your appointments with your doctor even if you feel well.
Clonidine is used alone or together with other medicines to treat high blood pressure (hypertension). High blood pressure adds to the workload of the heart and arteries. If it continues for a long time, the heart and arteries may not function properly. This can damage the blood vessels of the brain, heart, and kidneys, resulting in a stroke, heart failure, or kidney failure. High blood pressure may also increase the risk for heart attacks. These problems may be less likely to occur if the blood pressure is controlled. Clonidine belongs to the class of medicines called antihypertensives. A blood pressure reading, given in millimeters of mercury (mm Hg), has two numbers. The first, or upper, number measures the pressure in your arteries when your heart beats (systolic pressure). The second, or lower, number measures the pressure in your arteries between beats (diastolic pressure). Both numbers in a blood pressure reading are important. But after age 50, the systolic reading is even more significant. Isolated systolic hypertension is a condition in which the diastolic pressure is normal (less than 80 mm Hg) but systolic pressure is high (greater than or equal to 130 mm Hg). This is a common type of high blood pressure among people older than 65.
In addition to the use of this medicine, treatment for your high blood pressure may include. Clonidine extended-release tablets works differently than clonidine. Clonidine is the generic name of Catapres, a medication used to treat high blood pressure. Clonidine works by slowing down your heart rate.