July 4, 2015
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"March 4, 2013 -- Nearly 30% of children with ADHD continue to struggle with the condition as adults, and some may develop other mental health issues, commit suicide, or end up in jail, a new study shows.

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Included as part of the PRECAUTIONS section.



Treatment with KAPVAY can cause dose related decreases in blood pressure and heart rate [see ADVERSE REACTIONS]. Measure heart rate and blood pressure prior to initiation of therapy, following dose increases, and periodically while on therapy. Titrate KAPVAY slowly in patients with a history of hypotension, and those with underlying conditions that may be worsened by hypotension and bradycardia; e.g., heart block, bradycardia, cardiovascular disease, vascular disease, cerebrovascular disease, or chronic renal failure. In patients who have a history of syncope or may have a condition that predisposes them to syncope, such as hypotension, orthostatic hypotension, bradycardia, or dehydration advise patients to avoid becoming dehydrated or overheated. Monitor blood pressure and heart rate, and adjust dosages accordingly in patients treated concomitantly with antihypertensives or other drugs that can reduce blood pressure or heart rate or increase the risk of syncope.

Sedation And Somnolence

Somnolence and sedation were commonly reported adverse reactions in clinical studies. In patients that completed 5 weeks of therapy in a controlled, fixed dose pediatric monotherapy study, 31% of patients treated with 0.4 mg/day and 38% treated with 0.2 mg/day versus 4% of placebo treated patients reported somnolence as an adverse event. In patients that completed 5 weeks of therapy in a controlled flexible dose pediatric adjunctive to stimulants study, 19% of patients treated with KAPVAY+stimulant versus 7% treated with placebo+stimulant reported somnolence. Before using KAPVAY with other centrally active depressants (such as phenothiazines, barbiturates, or benzodiazepines), consider the potential for additive sedative effects. Caution patients against operating heavy equipment or driving until they know how they respond to treatment with KAPVAY. Advise patients to avoid use with alcohol.

Rebound Hypertension

Abrupt discontinuation of KAPVAY can cause rebound hypertension. In adults with hypertension, sudden cessation of clonidine hydrochloride extended-release formulation treatment in the 0.2 to 0.6 mg/day range resulted in reports of headache, tachycardia, nausea, flushing, warm feeling, brief lightheadedness, tightness in chest, and anxiety. In adults with hypertension, sudden cessation of treatment with immediate-release clonidine has, in some cases, resulted in symptoms such as nervousness, agitation, headache, and tremor accompanied or followed by a rapid rise in blood pressure and elevated catecholamine concentrations in the plasma.

No studies evaluating abrupt discontinuation of KAPVAY in children with ADHD have been conducted; however, to minimize the risk of rebound hypertension, gradually reduce the dose of KAPVAY in decrements of no more than 0.1 mg every 3 to 7 days. Patients should be instructed not to discontinue KAPVAY therapy without consulting their physician due to the potential risk of withdrawal effects.

Allergic Reactions

In patients who have developed localized contact sensitization to clonidine transdermal system, continuation of clonidine transdermal system or substitution of oral KAPVAY therapy may be associated with the development of a generalized skin rash.

In patients who develop an allergic reaction from clonidine transdermal system, substitution of oral KAPVAY may also elicit an allergic reaction (including generalized rash, urticaria, or angioedema).

Cardiac Conduction Abnormalities

The sympatholytic action of clonidine may worsen sinus node dysfunction and atrioventricular (AV) block, especially in patients taking other sympatholytic drugs. There have been post-marketing reports of patients with conduction abnormalities and/or taking other sympatholytic drugs who developed severe bradycardia requiring IV atropine, IV isoproterenol, and temporary cardiac pacing while taking clonidine. Titrate KAPVAY slowly and monitor vital signs frequently in patients with cardiac conduction abnormalities or patients concomitantly treated with other sympatholytic drugs.

Patient Counseling Information

Advise the patient to read the FDA-approved Patient Labeling (PATIENT INFORMATION)

Dosage And Administration

Advise patients that KAPVAY must be swallowed whole, never crushed, cut, or chewed, and may be taken with or without food. When initiating treatment, provide dosage escalation instructions [see DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION].

Missed Dose

If patients miss a dose of KAPVAY, advise them to skip the dose and take the next dose as scheduled and not to take more than the prescribed total daily amount of KAPVAY in any 24-hour period [see DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION].


Advise patients who have a history of syncope or may have a condition that predisposes them to syncope, such as hypotension, orthostatic hypotension, bradycardia, or dehydration, to avoid becoming dehydrated or overheated [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS].

Sedation And Somnolence

Instruct patients to use caution when driving a car or operating hazardous machinery until they know how they will respond to treatment with KAPVAY. Also advise patients to avoid the use of KAPVAY with other centrally active depressants and with alcohol [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS].

Rebound Hypertension

Advise patients not to discontinue KAPVAY abruptly [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS].

Allergic Reactions

Advise patients to discontinue KAPVAY and seek immediate medical attention if any signs or symptoms of a hypersensitivity reaction occur, such as generalized rash, urticaria, or angioedema [see WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS].

Nonclinical Toxicology

Carcinogenesis, Mutagenesis And Impairment Of Fertility

Clonidine HCl was not carcinogenic when administered in the diet of rats (for up to 132 weeks) or mice (for up to 78 weeks) at doses of up to 1620 (male rats), 2040 (female rats), or 2500 (mice) mcg/kg/day. These doses are approximately 20, 25, and 15 times, respectively, the maximum recommended human dose (MRHD) of 0.4 mg/day on a mg/m² basis.

There was no evidence of genotoxicity in the Ames test for mutagenicity or mouse micronucleus test for clastogenicity.

Fertility of male or female rats was unaffected by clonidine HCl doses as high as 150 mcg/kg/day (approximately 3 times the MRHD on a mg/m² basis). In a separate experiment, fertility of female rats appeared to be adversely affected at dose levels of 500 and 2000 mcg/kg/day (10 and 40 times the MRHD on a mg/ m² basis).

Use In Specific Populations


Pregnancy Category C

Risk Summary

There are no adequate or well-controlled studies with KAPVAY in pregnant women. In animal embryofetal studies, increased resorptions were seen in rats and mice administered oral clonidine hydrochloride from implantation through organogenesis at 10 and 5 times, respectively, the maximum recommended human dose (MRHD). No embryotoxic or teratogenic effects were seen in rabbits administered oral clonidine hydrochloride during organogenesis at doses up to 3 times the MRHD. KAPVAY should be used during pregnancy only if the potential benefit justifies the potential risk to the fetus.

Animal Data

Oral administration of clonidine hydrochloride to pregnant rabbits during the period of embryo/fetal organogenesis at doses of up to 80 mcg/kg/day (approximately 3 times the oral maximum recommended daily dose [MRHD] of 0.4 mg/day on a mg/m² basis) produced no evidence of teratogenic or embryotoxic potential. In pregnant rats, however, doses as low as 15 mcg/kg/day (1/3 the MRHD on a mg/m² basis) were associated with increased resorptions in a study in which dams were treated continuously from 2 months prior to mating and throughout gestation. Increased resorptions were not associated with treatment at the same or at higher dose levels (up to 3 times the MRHD) when treatment of the dams was restricted to gestation days 6-15. Increases in resorptions were observed in both rats and mice at 500 mcg/kg/day (10 and 5 times the MRHD in rats and mice, respectively) or higher when the animals were treated on gestation days 1-14; 500 mcg/kg/day was the lowest dose employed in this study.

Nursing Mothers

Clonidine hydrochloride is present in human milk. The developmental and health benefits of breastfeeding should be considered along with the mother's clinical need for KAPVAY and any potential adverse effects on the breastfed child from KAPVAY or from the underlying maternal condition. Exercise caution when KAPVAY is administered to a nursing woman.

Pediatric Use

The safety and efficacy of KAPVAY in the treatment of ADHD have been established in pediatric patients 6 to 17 years of age. Use of KAPVAY in pediatric patients 6 to 17 years of age is supported by three adequate and well-controlled studies; a short-term, placebo-controlled monotherapy trial, a short-term adjunctive therapy trial and a longer-term randomized monotherapy trial [see Clinical Studies]. Safety and efficacy in pediatric patients below the age of 6 years has not been established.

Juvenile Animal Data A study was conducted in which young rats were treated orally with clonidine hydrochloride from day 21 of age to adulthood at doses of up to 300 mcg/kg/day, which is approximately 3 times the maximum recommended human dose (MRHD) of 0.4 mg/day on a mg/m² basis. A slight delay in onset of preputial separation (delayed sexual maturation) was seen in males treated with the highest dose (with a no-effect dose of 100 mcg/kg/day, which is approximately equal to the MRHD), but there were no drug effects on fertility or on other measures of sexual or neurobehavioral development.

Renal Impairment

The impact of renal impairment on the pharmacokinetics of clonidine in children has not been assessed. The initial dosage of KAPVAY should be based on degree of impairment. Monitor patients carefully for hypotension and bradycardia, and titrate to higher doses cautiously. Since only a minimal amount of clonidine is removed during routine hemodialysis, there is no need to give supplemental KAPVAY following dialysis.

Last reviewed on RxList: 7/1/2015
This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.


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