Pharmacology Antihypertensives #11

Question

A patient has a new prescription captopril following a clinic visit. What should the nurse include in teaching about the drug? Select all that apply.

Answers

  1. Take the medication with meals
    • Rationale:

      This answer is not correct because captopril does not have to be taken with meals. The medication can be taken with or without meals.

  2. Report any cough that develops.
    • Rationale:

      This answer is correct because captopril is an angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor (ACE inhibitor) used to decrease blood pressure in patients. Side effects associated with captopril include a nagging cough (“ACE cough”), and rare incidences of angioedema and liver failure. The cough associated with captopril is benign but worrisome. On the other hand, angioedema is a potentially life-threatening condition with symptoms including swelling of the hands, feet, or tongue, with difficulty swallowing. Airway compromise can occur so emergency treat

  3. Report to the clinic for weekly blood serum labs.
    • Rationale:

      This answer is not correct because there is no need for weekly blood tests when taking captopril. Captopril and other ACE inhibitors can cause increased potassium blood levels in patients, so periodic blood tests should be checked, especially if the patient is taking potassium supplements or potassium-sparing diuretics.

  4. Check blood pressure prior to dose, log findings, and report changes.
    • Rationale:

      This answer is correct because captopril is an angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor (ACE inhibitor) used to decrease blood pressure in patients. Patients should be taught to monitor their blood pressures, log their findings, and report changes. This will help monitor the patient’s progress and control of blood pressure during treatment therapy.

  5. Do not drink grapefruit juice while taking captopril.
    • Rationale:

      This answer is incorrect because ACE inhibitors have not shown any interaction with grapefruit juice. Angiotensin II type 1 receptor antagonists, the “sartans” may potentially cause an interaction with grapefruit juice.

Overview

Captopril is a medication used to treat blood pressure in patients. A side effect of captopril is a nagging cough, often called an “ACE cough”.

Explanation

The patient should check blood pressure weekly; report cough, swelling of the hands, feet, or tongue, or difficulty swallowing. It is not necessary to take captopril with meals. Weekly laboratory tests are not necessary.

Learning Outcomes

Captopril is an angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor (ACE inhibitor) used to decrease blood pressure in patients. Patients should be taught to monitor their blood pressures, log their findings, and report changes. This will help monitor the patient’s progress and control of blood pressure during treatment therapy. Side effects associated with captopril include a nagging cough (“ACE cough”), and rare incidences of angioedema and liver failure. Angioedema is a potentially life-threatening condition with symptoms including swelling of the hands, feet, or tongue, with difficulty swallowing. Airway compromise can occur so emergency treatment is needed.

Test Taking Tip

ACE inhibitors often have a suffix of “-pril”.

Video Rationale