Consumer Medicine Information
What is in this leaflet
This leaflet answers some common questions about Catapres 150 tablets.
It does not contain all the available information.
It does not take the place of talking to your doctor or pharmacist.
All medicines have benefits and risks. Your doctor has weighed the risks of you taking
Catapres against the benefits they expect it will have for you.
If you have any concerns about taking this medicine, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
This leaflet was last updated on the date at the end of this leaflet. More recent
information may be available. The latest Consumer Medicine Information is available
from your pharmacist, doctor, or from www.medicines.org.au (Australia) and www.medsafe.govt.nz/
Consumers/cmi/CMIForm.asp (New Zealand) and may contain important information about
the medicine and its use of which you should be aware.
Keep this leaflet with your medicine.
You may need to read it again.
What Catapres is used for
Catapres lowers high blood pressure, also called hypertension.
Everyone has blood pressure. This pressure helps your blood move around your body.
Your blood pressure may be different at different times of the day. You have hypertension
when your blood pressure stays higher than normal, even when you are calm or relaxed.
There are usually no signs of hypertension. The only way of knowing that you have
hypertension is to have your blood pressure checked on a regular basis. You may feel
fine and have no symptoms, but if high blood pressure is not treated, it can lead
to serious health problems (such as heart disease).
Catapres works by relaxing and widening blood vessels and so helps to lower your blood
Ask your doctor if you have any questions about why Catapres has been prescribed for
Your doctor may have prescribed Catapres for another reason.
Before you take Catapres
When you must not take it
Do not take Catapres if you have an allergy to:
any medicine containing clonidine
any of the other ingredients listed at the end of this leaflet.
Some of the symptoms of an allergic reaction may include:
shortness of breath
wheezing or difficulty breathing
swelling of the face, lips, tongue or other parts of the body
rash, itching or hives on the skin.
Do not take Catapres if you have the rare hereditary condition of galactose intolerance.
Do not take Catapres if you have certain heart problems, such as irregular/slow heartbeat.
Do not take Catapres if you are pregnant.
It may affect your developing baby if you take it during pregnancy.
Do not breast-feed if you are taking this medicine.
The active ingredient in Catapres passes into breast milk and there is a possibility
that your baby may be affected.
Do not give Catapres to a child under the age of 18 years of age.
Serious side effects have been observed when clonidine, the active ingredient in Catapres,
is used with methylphenidate in children with ADHD. Therefore, Catapres in this combination
is not recommended.
Do not take Catapres after the expiry date printed on the carton or blister strips
or if the packaging is torn or shows signs of tampering.
If it has expired or is damaged, return it to your pharmacist for disposal.
If you are not sure whether you should start taking this medicine, talk to your doctor.
Before you start to take it
Tell your doctor if you have allergies to any other medicines, foods, preservatives
Tell your doctor if you have or have had any of the following medical conditions:
heart failure or any heart or circulation problem
stroke, or transient ischaemic attack (TIA)
nerve damage, which may lead to weakness in the arms and legs
phaeochromocytoma (a rare tumour of the adrenal gland)
any problems with your kidneys.
If you are uncertain as to whether you have, or have had, any of these conditions
you should raise those concerns with your doctor.
If you have not told your doctor about any of the above, tell him/her before you start
Taking other medicines
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including any
that you get without a prescription from your pharmacy, supermarket or health food
Some medicines and Catapres may interfere with each other. These include:
other medicines for high blood pressure
medicines for heart problems
medicines used to control mood swings and some types of depression
medicines used to relieve pain, swelling or other symptoms of inflammation.
These medicines may be affected by Catapres, or may affect how well it works. You
may need different amounts of your medicine, or you may need to take different medicines.
Your doctor and pharmacist have more information on medicines to be careful with or
avoid while being given this medicine.
How to take Catapres
Follow the directions given to you by your doctor and pharmacist carefully.
These directions may differ from the information contained in this leaflet.
If you do not understand the instructions on the box, ask your doctor or pharmacist
How much to take
Your doctor will tell you how much of your medicine you need to take every day. This
depends on your condition and whether you are taking other medicines.
How to take it
Swallow the tablets with a full glass of water.
When to take it
Take your medicine at about the same time each day.
Taking it at the same time each day will have the best effect. It will also help you
remember when to take it.
How long to take it
Continue taking Catapres for as long as your doctor tells you.
Catapres helps to control your condition, but does not cure it. It is important to
keep taking your medicine even if you feel well.
If your doctor tells you to stop taking Catapres, you should reduce the dose of medicine
gradually over a period of a week or more.
This is to avoid a sudden increase in your blood pressure.
Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any concerns.
If you forget to take it
It is important to take Catapres as directed.
If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you remember. However, if you remember when
it is almost time for your next dose, take only your usual dose at that time.
Do not take a double dose to make up for the dose that you missed.
If you are not sure what to do, ask your doctor or pharmacist.
If you have trouble remembering to take your medicine, ask your pharmacist for some
If you take too much (overdose)
Immediately telephone your doctor or Poisons Information Centre (in Australia telephone
13 11 26; in New Zealand telephone 0800 764 766) for advice, or go to Emergency at
your nearest hospital, if you have taken more than the recommended or prescribed dose
of Catapres. Do this even if there are no signs of discomfort or poisoning.
You may need urgent medical attention.
Signs of overdose may include slow heartbeat, drowsiness, temporarily stopping breathing
and coma. Other signs include dizziness, weakness, lethargy, feeling cold, vomiting,
looking pale, or having an irregular heartbeat.
While you are taking Catapres
Things you must do
If you are about to be started on any new medicine, tell your doctor and pharmacist
that you are taking Catapres.
Tell any other doctors, dentists and pharmacists who treat you that you are taking
If you are going to have surgery, tell the surgeon or anaesthetist that you are taking
It may affect other medicines used during surgery.
If you become pregnant while taking Catapres, tell your doctor immediately.
Have your blood pressure checked as instructed by your doctor, to make sure Catapres
Tell your doctor if, for any reason, you have not taken Catapres exactly as prescribed.
Otherwise, your doctor may think that it was not effective and change your treatment
Things you must not do
Do not take Catapres to treat any other complaints unless your doctor tells you to.
Do not give Catapres to anyone else, even if they have the same condition as you.
Do not stop taking your medicine or lower the dosage without checking with your doctor.
Things to be careful of
Be careful driving or operating machinery until you know how Catapres affects you.
Catapres, like other medicines used to treat high blood pressure, may cause dizziness
or drowsiness in some people. Make sure you know how you react to Catapres before
you drive or operate machinery.
If you feel light-headed, dizzy or faint, get up slowly when getting out of bed or
You may feel light-headed or dizzy when you begin to take Catapres or if the dose
is increased. This is because your blood pressure is falling suddenly. Standing up
slowly will help your body get used to the change in position and blood pressure.
The problem usually goes away after the first few days.
Tell your doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible if you do not feel well while you
are taking Catapres.
All medicines can have side effects. Sometimes they are serious, most of the time
they are not. You may need medical attention if you get some of the side effects.
Do not be alarmed by the following list of side effects. You may not experience any
Ask your doctor or pharmacist to answer any questions you may have.
The more frequently reported side effects of Catapres are lightheadedness when you
stand up suddenly, drowsiness, dryness of the mouth, nausea and vomiting.
Less frequently reported side effects of Catapres include the following:
irrational or abnormal thoughts
decreased sexual drive / impotence
generally feeling unwell
thinning of hair
rash / hives / itching
dryness of the nose and eyes
pain in the salivary glands
tingling or numbness of the hands or feet
larger breasts than normal, in men
slow or irregular heart beat
blood glucose increased.
Occasional reports of abnormal liver function tests and cases of hepatitis have also
Tell your doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible if you experience any side effects
during or after taking Catapres, so that these may be properly treated.
Other side effects not listed above may also occur in some people.
Tell your doctor or pharmacist if you notice anything unusual, during or after taking
After taking Catapres
Keep your tablets in the blister strip until it is time to take them.
The blister strip protects the tablets. If you take the tablets out of the blister
strip they may not keep well.
Keep your tablets in a cool dry place where the temperature stays below 25°C.
Do not store Catapres or any other medicine in the bathroom or near a sink. Do not
leave it in the car or on the window sill.
Heat and dampness can destroy some medicines.
Keep it where children cannot reach it.
A locked cupboard at least one-and-a-half metres above the ground is a good place
to store medicines.
If your doctor tells you to stop taking this medicine or the expiry date has passed,
ask your pharmacist what to do with any medicine that is left over.
What it looks like
Catapres is the brand name of your medicine.
Catapres 150 tablets are white, round tablets, marked with the Boehringer Ingelheim
logo on one side and 15C/15C on the other.
Blister packs of 100 tablets.
Each Catapres 150 tablet contains 150 micrograms clonidine hydrochloride. The other
ingredients are maize starch, colloidal anhydrous silica, povidone, stearic acid,
calcium hydrogen phosphate and lactose monohydrate.
Catapres 150 tablets are supplied in Australia by:
Boehringer Ingelheim Pty Limited
ABN 52 000 452 308
78 Waterloo Road
NORTH RYDE NSW 2113
Catapres 150 tablets are supplied in New Zealand by:
BOEHRINGER INGELHEIM (N.Z.) LIMITED
This Consumer Medicine Information was updated in October 2017
® Catapres is a registered trademark of Boehringer Ingelheim
© Boehringer Ingelheim Pty Limited
Australian Registration Number
Blister pack AUST R 78376