Captopril is used on its own or together with other medicines to keep your blood pressure under control. This medicine helps relax your blood vessels consequently lowering your blood pressure.
Captopril may also be used to treat other conditions such as heart failure, heart attack, and kidney damage caused by diabetes.
Take Captopril exactly as directed by your doctor or according to the instructions on the label. Do not take more or less than instructed by your doctor.
This medicine should be taken on an empty stomach, at least 1 hour before or 2 hours after a meal. Try to take it at the same time each day.
Captopril must be taken regularly for it to be effective. Continue taking this medicine even when you feel better/well. Do not stop taking it unless instructed by the doctor, as stopping it suddenly may worsen your condition.
Take the missed dose as soon as you remember. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and return to your normal dosing schedule.
DO NOT double a dose under any circumstances.
If you often forget to take your medicine, let your doctor and pharmacist know.
Alert your doctor if you have the previously experience a serious allergic reaction which causes swelling of the face, lips and throat due to an unknown reason or a family history, as Captopril may not be suitable for you.
Do not take this medicine if you are pregnant or planning to have a baby soon. If you become pregnant while being treated with this medicine, alert your doctor immediately. Captopril may cause harm to your unborn child. You must use proven birth control methods while taking this medicine.
Do not take this medicine if you have taken sacubitril (medicine used to treat high blood pressure) if you have diabetes and severe kidney disease.
Do not take Captopril with aliskiren (medicine used to treat high blood pressure) if you have diabetes and severe kidney disease. Please see the section “Can I take this with other medicines?” below for more information.
Inform your doctor if you have the following conditions:
- low sodium levels in the blood or fluid loss caused by water pills, dietary salt restriction, diarrhoea or vomiting
- heart disease such as narrowing of the valves of the heart
- kidney disease
- immune system diseases affecting collagen
Let your doctor know if you are breastfeeding.
Be sure to check with your doctor or pharmacist before giving Captopril to a child or elderly person. Children and elderly people may be more sensitive to the side effects.
If you are going for an operation, including minor surgery and dental work, inform your doctor or dentist that you are taking Captopril.
If you are of a Black race, Captopril may be less effective. Inform your doctor if you are taking this medicine.
If you are going to undergo certain laboratory tests, inform your doctor that you are using this medicine.
Why is it important to keep my appointments with the doctor?
Keep your appointments with your doctor. Your doctor needs to monitor your condition and check your response to the medication regularly.
- Your blood pressure may fall to unsafe levels without you noticing it.
- Your doctor may also need to do routine blood tests while you are being treated with Captopril to monitor the health of your kidney. Your doctor will advise you about how often you need to have blood tests.
What lifestyle changes can I make to improve my blood pressure?
Regular exercise and eating a healthy diet will help lower your blood pressure and improve your overall health. Engage in physical activity (e.g. walking) at least 30 to 60 minutes on most days of the week. If you have not exercised for a long time, start with light exercises such as slow walks. Speak to your doctor about what type of exercise would be suitable for you. Follow a healthy diet plan by eating more fruits, vegetables, whole grains and low-fat dairy products and reduce your intake of foods high in saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium. Cutting down on deep-fried foods and using less salt when cooking can kick-start your healthy diet.
If you smoke, you should try to quit. Smoking is harmful to your blood pressure, heart and overall health. Speak to your doctor or pharmacist about ways to kick your smoking habit.
This medicine may cause any of the following side effects: nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, constipation, dizziness, dry mouth, stomach discomfort and pain; dyspepsia, taste impairment, persistent dry cough, weakness, loss of appetite, difficulty in breathing, frequent urination, rash, alopecia, lack of concentration, muscle weakness, cramping or numbness; fast or irregular heartbeat, low blood sugar (sweating, hunger, irritability, headache), enlargement of one or both breasts, sleep disturbance, confusion, unusual changes in mood or behaviour (being too depressed, agitated, or having compulsive and impulsive behaviour).
Some side effects may be serious, although they are not common. Alert your doctor quickly if you experience:
- swelling in the ankles or feet
- yellowing of the skin or eyes
- foamy, frothy or bubbly-looking urine
If you develop rashes, breathlessness, swollen mouth or eyes, stop taking Captopril and inform your doctor quickly. These could be signs of an allergic reaction.
You may experience dizziness when getting up from a sitting or lying down position, especially if you are taking this medicine for the first time. This is common and should disappear gradually as you get used to the medicine. It will help if you get up slowly from a sitting or lying position.
This medicine may cause the level of your red blood cells, white blood cells and platelets to drop.
Red blood cells carry oxygen around your body. A fall in the level of red blood cells may make you feel tired and worn out.
White blood cells help your body to fight infections. A fall in the level of your white blood cells may put you at higher risk for infections, such as coughs, colds and flu, which may lead to more serious infections. Avoid crowded places and people who are sick. Alert your doctor if you have a fever, or a cough or flu that does not go away.
Platelets help your blood to clot when there is a cut in the skin. A fall in the level of your platelets may put you at risk of bleeding more than usual. Do not take part in activities where you may fall or get injured, such as contact sports. Alert your doctor if you get any unusual bruising (large bruises or several bruises, especially if the bruises appeared on their own) or bleeding that takes a long time to stop (for example, too much bleeding when you floss or brush your teeth).
Inform your doctor if any of these side effects do not go away or are severe, or if you experience other side effects.
Do not take Captopril with aliskiren (medicine used to treat high blood pressure) if you have diabetes and severe kidney disease.
Do not take Captopril if you are taking medicines for high blood pressure or heart disease e.g. sacubitril/valsartan.
Inform your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any of these medicines:
- NSAIDs (medicine for pain and inflammation) e.g. indomethacin, ibuprofen
- medicines for diabetes e.g. insulin, sitagliptin, gliclazide
- medicines for water retention (“water pills”) e.g. spironolactone
- medicine used in organ transplant or certain immune disorders e.g. temsirolimus, everolimus
- other medicines for high blood pressure or heart disease e.g. propranolol, amlodipine
- medicine for depression e.g. lithium
- potassium supplements (either as a medicine or as a salt substitute)
- medicine for high blood pressure e.g. losartan, prazosin, hydralazine
This list does not include all medicine that may interact with Captopril.
Always notify your doctor and pharmacist if you are taking any other medicines, including herbal tonics such as traditional Chinese medicine, supplements and medicine that you buy without a prescription.
Avoid taking too much food that is high in potassium, such as orange juice, bananas or prunes. Do not use salt substitutes that contain potassium.
Cut down on your salt intake. This may help lower your blood pressure and improve your overall health. Speak to your doctor or dietitian about ways to cut down on your salt intake.
Store in a cool, dry place away from the reach of children.
Medicines must not be used past the expiry date.