Compare Diltiazem vs. Catapres

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

Cardizem
(Diltiazem)

Catapres
(Clonidine)

Lowers blood pressure and controls heart rate. Diltiazem works well to lower blood pressure and prevent chest pain, but you have to be okay with avoiding alcohol. You can't miss doses, and you might get persistent swelling.Lowers blood pressure. Catapres (Clonidine) is a good addition if you need more than one medicine to control your blood pressure, but it has a lot of side effects. You can't miss doses.
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Reviews & ratings
Filter group. All currently selected
Filter group. All currently selected
4.757575757575758Diltiazem
Reviews for Cardizem (Diltiazem)
53%
of people (All ages) say Cardizem (Diltiazem) is worth it
48%
say it works well
16%
say it's a big hassle
Have you used Cardizem (Diltiazem)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Catapres (Clonidine)
42%
11% vs. Cardizem (Diltiazem)
33%
15% vs. Cardizem (Diltiazem)
34%
18% vs. Cardizem (Diltiazem)
Have you used Catapres (Clonidine)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
DiltiazemCatapres
  • Abnormally slow heartbeat 2%
More Diltiazem side effects »

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

More about Catapres side effects »
How it works
DiltiazemCatapres
Diltiazem is a calcium channel blocker. It lowers blood pressure by slowing your heart rate and relaxing your blood vessels. Your heart gets more oxygen and doesn't have to work as hard to pump, which can relieve chest pain.Catapres (Clonidine) is an alpha-2 agonist. It works in the brain to tell your blood vessels to relax, and it lowers the activity of certain stress hormones. This lowers blood pressure.
Type of medication
DiltiazemCatapres
Antihypertensive
Calcium channel blocker
Prescription only
Antihypertensive
Alpha agonist
Prescription only
Available as
DiltiazemCatapres
  • Pill
  • Extended release
  • Extended release capsule
  • Pill
  • Extended release
  • Patch
Used for (click to learn more)
DiltiazemCatapres
Risk factors for serious side effects
DiltiazemCatapres
    • Taking digoxin or beta-blockers at the same time
    • History of liver disease
    Detailed Cardizem (Diltiazem) risks & warnings »
    • Sudden discontinuation of medicine
    • Taking with alcohol
    • Taking other medicines that make you less alert
    • Age 65 years or older
    • Using other medicine(s) that slows the heart
    Detailed Catapres (Clonidine) risks & warnings »
    Pregnancy category
    DiltiazemCatapres
    Alcohol
    • Not a good medication for you if you drink alcohol.
    No specific alcohol related info.
    Food
    • Some brands of Diltiazem have to be taken with food, so listen carefully for instructions from your doctor or pharmacist.
    No specific food related info.
    Sleep
    No specific sleep related info.
    • Can cause drowsiness, headache, dizziness, and dry mouth.
    Upsides and benefits
    DiltiazemCatapres
    • A first-choice blood pressure treatment for many people.
    • Calcium channel blockers work especially well for African Americans to lower blood pressure.
    • You can take it alone or with other medicines to help lower blood pressure.
    • Lowers the risk of heart attack and stroke.
    • Prevents heart-related chest pain (angina) if you take it regularly.
    • Treats certain abnormal heart rhythms.
    • Can be added to other blood pressure-lowering medicines if you need additional blood pressure control.
    • Available in a weekly patch for people that aren't good at taking medicine by mouth.
    • Works in the brain, so it can help treat some nervous system and psychiatric conditions.
    • Under the brand name Kapvay, it's used to treat ADHD in children and teenagers.
    Downsides and risks
    DiltiazemCatapres
    • Calcium channel blockers can cause swelling in your limbs. If this happens for you, it probably won't get better over time, so talk to your doctor about alternatives if it bothers you.
    • Women are more likely to have side effects (especially swelling) from Diltiazem than men.
    • You can't miss doses. Stopping Diltiazem suddenly can cause your blood pressure to go up suddenly, which raises the risk of heart attack and stroke.
    • Some brands of Diltiazem have to be taken with food, so listen carefully for instructions from your doctor or pharmacist.
    • Not a good medication for you if you drink alcohol.
    • Has a lot of side effects compared to other blood pressure-lowering medicine because it works in the brain.
    • The pill form can make some people sleepy, dizzy, and have dry mouth.
    • You can't miss doses. Stopping Clonidine suddenly can cause your blood pressure to go up suddenly, which raises the risk of heart attack and stroke.
    Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
    DiltiazemCatapres
    • Can cause dizziness or fatigue in the first few days.
    • Interacts with the cholesterol medicine Simvastatin.
    • Can cause ankle or foot swelling.
    • Can cause gum overgrowth. Ask your dentist to check for this side effect.
    • Check your blood pressure 1 week after starting this medicine, and tell your doctor if it hasn't improved.
    • Usually taken together with other medicines for better blood pressure control.
    • Can cause drowsiness, headache, dizziness, and dry mouth.
    • If side effects don't go away, talk to your doctor about alternatives.
    • The weekly patch form can have fewer side effects.
    • Don't stop taking this medicine suddenly.
    • Extended release tablet also used to treat ADHD.
    • Check your blood pressure 1 week after starting this medicine, and tell your doctor if it hasn't improved.
    Learn more
    More about DiltiazemSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
    Have you used Cardizem (Diltiazem)?
    Worth itNot sureNot worth it
    More about CatapresSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
    Have you used Catapres (Clonidine)?
    Worth itNot sureNot worth it