Also known as: Clonidine
Clonidine transdermal 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. It works in the brain to change some of the nerve impulses. As a result, the blood vessels relax and blood passes through them more easily, which lowers blood pressure. When the blood pressure is lowered, the amount of blood and oxygen going to the heart is increased.
This medicine will not cure your high blood pressure, but it does help control it. Therefore, you must continue to use it as directed if you expect to lower your blood pressure and keep it down. You might have to take high blood pressure medicine for the rest of your life.
This medicine is available only with your doctor's prescription.
This section provides information on the proper use of a number of products that contain clonidine. It may not be specific to Catapres-TTS-3. Please read with care.
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. In fact, many patients feel normal. 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.
Remember that this medicine will not cure your high blood pressure, but it does help control it. You must continue to take it as directed if you expect to lower your blood pressure and keep it down. You may have to take high blood pressure medicine for the rest of your life. If high blood pressure is not treated, it can cause serious problems such as heart failure, blood vessel disease, stroke, or kidney disease.
To use the skin patch:
Use this medicine exactly as directed by your doctor. It will work only if applied correctly. This medicine usually comes with patient instructions. Read them carefully before applying the patch. Wash your hands with soap and water before and after applying a patch. Do not touch your eyes until after you have washed your hands. Do not try to trim or cut the adhesive patch to adjust the dosage. Check with your doctor if you think the medicine is not working as it should. Gently wash the area of skin where you will apply the patch with soap and water. Rinse the skin completely and dry with a clean, dry tissue. Apply the patch right away after removing it from the pouch. Do not cut it into smaller pieces and do not touch the sticky surface of the patch. Apply the patch to a clean, dry, and intact skin area on your upper, outer arm or upper chest. Choose an area with little or no hair that is free of scars, cuts, or irritation. Avoid putting the patch on skin areas where it could be rubbed off by tight clothing. Press the patch firmly in place with your fingertips to make sure that the edges stick well. The patch should stay in place during showering, bathing, or swimming for a full 7 days. If the patch becomes loose, press the edges against the skin and cover the patch with one of the white adhesive covers that are included in the package. Apply a new patch if the first one becomes too loose or falls off. It is best to apply each patch to a different area of the skin to prevent skin irritation.
To help you remember to use your medicine, try to apply the patch at the same time and on the same day of the week.
The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.
The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.
For transdermal dosage form (patch): For high blood pressure: Adults—One patch applied once every 7 days. Your doctor may adjust your dose as needed. Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor.
Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.
Overdose symptoms may include feeling cold, irritable, weak, drowsy, or light-headed, or having weak reflexes, pinpoint pupils, slow heartbeats, shallow breathing, or a seizure.
Store the patches at room temperature in a closed container, away from heat, moisture, and direct light.
Keep out of the reach of children.
Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.
Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.
After removing a used patch, fold the patch in half with the sticky sides together. Make sure to dispose of it out of the reach of children and pets.
Detailed Catapres-TTS dosage information