What is Clonidine?
Clonidine is a medicine that reduces blood pressure. It is also effective for treating menopausal symptoms such as hot flushes and excessive sweating. Clonidine causes certain blood vessels to dilate, which reduces blood pressure and eases these symptoms. Clonidine is a prescription-only medicine.
What is Clonidine used for?
Clonidine is used to treat hot flushes and (night) sweats in menopausal women. It is particularly suitable for women who do not want or cannot take HRT. Clonidine is sometimes also used to treat high blood pressure and withdrawal symptoms caused by drug addiction.
How to use Clonidine
Clonidine is available in various forms: tablet, oral suspension, patch and injection fluid. Clonidine tablets should be swallowed whole, without chewing, at around the same time each day. They can be taken with or without food. The solution, patches and injection fluid should be taken as directed by the doctor or according to the instructions in the package leaflet. If your symptoms have not improved after a few weeks of taking Clonidine, contact your doctor. Do not stop taking Clonidine suddenly. To prevent withdrawal symptoms, treatment with this medicine should be discontinued gradually, following the instructions given by your doctor. For more information on how to use Clonidine, see the package leaflet.
Unless otherwise advised by the doctor, the usual dose for treating menopausal symptoms in adult women is:
- two to three 0.025 mg-tablets, twice daily.
The above dosage regimen does not apply to Clonidine solution, patches or injection fluid. The doctor may also prescribe an adjusted dose for conditions other than menopause. Read the package leaflet before use.
Treatment with Clonidine may cause side effects. The following are some of the side effects that are known to be associated with this medicine:
- Drowsiness, sleepiness, dizziness (especially in the initial phase of treatment);
- Dry mouth;
- Gastrointestinal symptoms such as loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea and constipation.
Most side effects are usually only temporary. If your symptoms have not improved after several weeks, talk to a doctor. For a complete list of possible side effects, see the package leaflet.
When not to use Clonidine
Clonidine is not suitable for everyone and should not be used if:
- You are allergic to clonidine or any other ingredient in this medicine;
- You have severe arrhythmia, causing you to have a very slow heart rate.
Consult a doctor on the use of Clonidine if you have a health condition that is not listed above or are currently on medication. For more information about contraindications and interactions, see the package leaflet.
Do not use Clonidine, or only with a doctor’s approval, if you are pregnant, planning a pregnancy or breastfeeding.
This medicine may cause dizziness, drowsiness or sleepiness. Stay out of traffic if you experience these side effects.
Do not drink alcohol while taking Clonidine as this is likely to trigger or worsen the side effects.