Common Reactions to Clonidine
Clonidine has been studied thoroughly in clinical trials. In these studies, the side effects that occur in a group of people taking the drug are documented and are then compared to side effects that occur in another group of people not taking the medicine. This way, it is possible to see what side effects occur, how often they appear, and how they compare to the group not taking the medicine.
For clonidine skin patches, the most common side effects included:
- Skin irritation at the patch site -- in up to 51 percent of people
- Dry mouth -- up to 25 percent (see Clonidine and Dry Mouth)
- Drowsiness -- up to 12 percent
- Fatigue -- up to 6 percent
- Headache -- up to 5 percent
- Darkening of the skin at the patch site -- up to 5 percent.
The most common side effects seen with clonidine tablets included:
- Dry mouth -- in up to 40 percent of people
- Drowsiness -- up to 33 percent
- Dizziness -- up to 16 percent
- Constipation -- up to 10 percent
- Sedation (a sleepy, "out of it" state) -- up to 10 percent.
The most common side effects of epidural clonidine included:
- Low blood pressure -- in up to 44.8 percent of people
- Dry mouth -- up to 13.2 percent
- Dizziness -- up to 13.2 percent
- Drowsiness -- up to 13.2 percent
- Confusion -- up to 13.2 percent
- Nausea -- up to 13.2 percent
- Vomiting -- up to 10.5 percent.
The most common side effects of long-acting clonidine tablets used to treat attention deficit disorder (ADHD) in children included:
- Drowsiness -- in up to 31 percent of people
- Headaches -- up to 29 percent
- Upper abdominal pain (stomach pain) -- up to 20 percent
- Fatigue -- up to 16 percent
- Upper respiratory tract infections (such as the common cold) -- up to 11 percent
- Irritability -- up to 9 percent
- Nightmares -- up to 9 percent.
Other common clonidine side effects include (but are not limited to):
- Sexual problems (see Clonidine Sexual Side Effects)
- Dry throat
- Changes in taste