Generic name: Captopril

Capoten is an antihypertensive and angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor. It works to reduce blood pressure by preventing angiotensin I from converting into a more potent enzyme that increases salt and water retention. 

Quick Facts About Capoten


Used to treat high blood pressure and congestive heart failure. Also used to improve survival in certain people who have had heart attacks, and to treat kidney disease in diabetics. Some doctors prescribe for crushing chest pain, Raynaud’s phenomenon, and rheumatoid arthritis.

Capoten Dosage

Take 1 hour before meals. Must take regularly to be effective against high blood pressure. May take several weeks to see full benefit If taking an antacid such as Maalox, take it 2 hours before taking Capoten. Follow instructions carefully, stopping medication abruptly can cause blood pressure to rise.

  • Usual adult dose: for high blood pressure — 25 milligrams taken 2 or 3 times per day. (With kidney or major health problems, dose may be lower.) Doctor may increase to a total of 150 milligrams taken 2 or 3 times per day. For heart failure — 25 milligrams taken 3 times per day, not to exceed 450 milligrams. After heart attack — 6.25 milligrams taken once, followed by 12.5 milligrams taken 3 times per day. Doctor may increase to 25 milligrams taken 3 times per day, then to 50 milligrams taken 3 times per day over a span of several weeks. For kidney disease in diabetes — 25 milligrams taken 3 times per day. For seniors — doctor will prescribe according to individual needs.
  • Usual child dose: not generally prescribed for children.
  • Missed dose: take as soon as possible, unless almost time for next dose. In that case, do not take missed dose, go back to regular schedule. Do not double doses.

Capoten Side Effects

Overdose symptoms:

light-headedness and dizziness caused by sudden drop in blood pressure. If you suspect an overdose, immediately seek medical attention.

More common side effects: itching, loss of taste, low blood pressure, rash.

Less common Capoten side effects: abdominal pain, anemia, blisters, blurred vision, breast development in males, cardiac arrest, changes in heart rhythm, chest pain, confusion, constipation, cough, depression, diarrhea, difficulty swallowing, dizziness, dry mouth, fatigue, fever and chills, flushrng, general feeling of ill health, hair loss, headache, heart attack, heart failure, impotence, inability to sleep, indigestion, inflammation of the nose, inflammation of the tongue, labored breathing, lack of coordination, loss of appetite, lung inflammation, muscle pain and/or weakness, nausea, nervousness, pallor, palpitations, peptic ulcer, rapid heartbeat, sensitivity to light, severe chest pain, skin inflammation, skin peeling, sleepiness, sore throat, stomach irritation, stroke, sudden fainting or loss of strength, swelling (of face, lips, tongue, throat, arms, or legs), tingling or pins and needles, vomiting, weakness, wheezing, yellow eyes and skin.


Inform your doctor before combining Capoten with:

Allopurinol (Zyloprim), Aspirin, blood pressure beta-blockers such as Inderal and Tenormin, Cyclosporine (Sandimmune), Digoxin (Lanoxin), Nitroglycerin and similar heart medicines (Nitro-Dur or Transderm-Nitro), nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs such as Indocin and Feldene, potassium preparations such as Micro-K and Slow-K, potassium-sparing diuretics such as Aldactone and Midamor. Do not use potassium containing salt substitutes while taking Capoten.

No known food/other substance interactions.

Special Cautions

ACE inhibitor medicines such as Capoten have caused injury and death to the fetus when used by pregnant women during the 2nd and 3rd trimesters. If pregnant or planning to become pregnant, inform your doctor immediately. Appears in breast milk; could affect a nursing infant.

Doctor will prescribe dosage according to seniors individual needs.

Not generally prescribed for children.

  • Contact your doctor immediately if you develop: chest pain, difficulty swallowing, or swelling of the face around your lips, tongue, or throat. May be an emergency situation.
  • Should not take if sensitive or allergic to this or similar medications.
  • Before taking Capoten, doctor should assess kidney function, and continue to monitor during therapy.
  • If you experience yellowing of the skin or whites of the eyes, stop taking Capoten and call your doctor.
  • Check with your doctor before increasing physical activity if taking Capoten for heart problems.
  • Monitor for low blood pressure and light-headed-ness after first few doses.
  • Taking a diuretic with Capoten, and dehydration (from excessive perspiration, vomiting, and /or diarrhea) may also cause low blood pressure.
  • Sore throat or fever may indicate a more serious illness; immediately inform your doctor if these symptoms appear.

Note: provides accurate and independent information prescription pills, over-the-counter medicines and natural products. This material is provided for educational purposes only and is not intended for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. If you have questions about  dosage, or Capoten side effects, please contact your healthcare provider.