Compare Captopril vs. Losartan

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Capoten
(Captopril)

Cozaar
(Losartan)

Lowers blood pressure. Captopril is a good blood pressure-lowering medicine that protects kidney function, but you have to take it on an empty stomach.Lowers blood pressure. Cozaar (Losartan) is a good blood pressure-lowering medicine that protects kidney function like an ACE inhibitor, but with fewer side effects.
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Reviews & ratings
Button Group. All currently active
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3.8190476190476192Captopril
Reviews for Capoten (Captopril)
33%
of people say Capoten (Captopril) is worth it
25%
say it works well
26%
say it's a big hassle
Reviews for Cozaar (Losartan)
57%
+24% vs. Capoten (Captopril)
47%
+22% vs. Capoten (Captopril)
16%
+10% vs. Capoten (Captopril)
Side effects
CaptoprilLosartan

The Captopril FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.

More about Captopril side effects »
  • Urinary tract infection 6%
  • Diarrhea 5%
  • Low blood sugar 4%
  • Low blood pressure 4%
  • Muscle weakness/fatiguea/fatigue 4%
  • Hyperkalemia 4%
  • Chest pain 4%
  • Low red blood cells 3%
  • Muscular weakness 3%
  • Orthostatic hypotension 3%
More Losartan side effects »
How it works
CaptoprilLosartan
Captopril is an angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitor. It blocks a chemical that tightens blood vessels. This makes blood vessels relax, which lowers blood pressure and allows more blood and oxygen to get to your heart and other organs.Cozaar (Losartan) is an angiotensin receptor blocker (ARB). It blocks a chemical that tightens blood vessels. This makes blood vessels relax, which lowers blood pressure and allows more blood and oxygen to get to your heart and other organs.
Type of medication
CaptoprilLosartan
Antihypertensive
ACE inhibitor
Prescription only
Antihypertensive
Angiotensin receptor blocker
Prescription only
Available as
CaptoprilLosartan
  • Pill
  • Pill
Used for (click to learn more)
CaptoprilLosartan
Risk factors for serious side effects
CaptoprilLosartan
  • Women of childbearing age
    • African descent
    • Current kidney problems
    • Medicine that increase potassium
    • Use of salt substitute
    Detailed Capoten (Captopril) risks & warnings »
    • Women of childbearing age
    • Concurrent liver disease
    • Current kidney problems
    • Medicine that increase potassium
    • Use of salt substitute
    Detailed Cozaar (Losartan) risks & warnings »
    Pregnancy category
    CaptoprilLosartan
    DFDA pregnancy category (Weigh risks vs. benefits)

    Research studies with real people found harmful effects on unborn babies, but the benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

    See the FDA package insert
    DFDA pregnancy category (Weigh risks vs. benefits)

    Research studies with real people found harmful effects on unborn babies, but the benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

    See the FDA package insert
    Alcohol
    No specific alcohol-related info.No specific alcohol-related info.
    Food
    No specific food-related info.No specific food-related info.
    Kidneys and liver
    • Protects kidney function, which is especially useful for people with diabetes or mild-to-moderate kidney disease.
    • Requires routine blood tests to check kidney function.
    • Protects kidney function, which is especially useful for people with diabetes or mild-to-moderate kidney disease.
    • Requires routine blood tests to check kidney function.
    Sex
    No specific sex-related info.No specific sex-related info.
    Sleep
    No specific sleep-related info.No specific sleep-related info.
    Weight
    No specific weight-related info.No specific weight-related info.
    Upsides and benefits
    CaptoprilLosartan
    • A first-choice blood pressure treatment for many people.
    • Lowers the risk of heart attack and stroke.
    • Protects kidney function, which is especially useful for people with diabetes or mild-to-moderate kidney disease.
    • Recommended for anyone with heart failure since it lowers the risk of death and further damage to your heart.
    • Similar to ACE inhibitors (like Lisinopril), with fewer side effects like cough and swelling.
    • A first-choice blood pressure treatment for many people.
    • Lowers the risk of heart attack and stroke.
    • Protects kidney function, which is especially useful for people with diabetes or mild-to-moderate kidney disease.
    • Recommended for anyone with heart failure since it lowers the risk of death and further damage to your heart.
    Downsides and risks
    CaptoprilLosartan
    • Up to 1 in 10 people can get a dry cough with this medicine. It ranges from a mild tickle in the throat to a persistent hacking cough.
    • Compared to other ACE inhibitors, less flexible on when and how you take it. Captopril needs to be taken multiple times a day on an empty stomach.
    • Requires a yearly blood test to see how the medicine is affecting your body.
    • Not safe to use if you're pregnant.
    • Requires a yearly blood test to see how the medicine is affecting your body.
    • Not safe to use if you're pregnant.
    Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
    CaptoprilLosartan
    • Take 1 hour before or 2 hours after eating.
    • Tell your doctor about any dizziness, fatigue, cough, or change in taste sensation that doesn't go away.
    • Can cause dizziness in the first few days.
    • Check your blood pressure 1 week after starting this medicine, and tell your doctor if it hasn't improved.
    • Requires routine blood tests to check kidney function.
    • Don't take it if you're pregnant.
    • Tell your doctor about any dizziness, fatigue, cough, or throat irritation that doesn't go away.
    • Can cause dizziness in the first few days.
    • Check your blood pressure 1 week after starting this medicine, and tell your doctor if it hasn't improved.
    • Requires routine blood tests to check kidney function.
    • Don't take it if you're pregnant.
    Learn more
    More about CaptoprilSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
    More about LosartanSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert