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General Information
What should I know before taking this drug
Dosage information
Adverse reactions
Additional information if any
Alphadopa (Wockhardt (merind))
Emdopa (IDPL) 
Methyldopa is a prescription drug available from your pharmacy store only with the prescription of a qualified medical practitioner. 
Methyldopa pronounced as: meth-ill-DOE-puh 
Methyldopa   is an anti hypertensive drug belongs to centrally acting alpha agonist. 
Methyldopa is used in the treatment of hypertension & hypertensive emergencies.
  • Take Methyldopa exactly as prescribed by your doctor. If do not understand these instructions ask your pharmacist, nurse or doctor to explain them to you.
  • Do not take the medication in larger amounts or for longer duration than recommended by your doctor. 
  • Take Methyldopa with a full glass of water at regular intervals as prescribed by your doctor.
  • Do not skip doses or stop taking Methyldopa without consulting your doctor as it may worsen the side effects. 
  • Avoid taking iron preparation along with methyldopa. However you may take it 2hrs before or after taking methyldopa as it decreases its absorption.
  • Do not use Methyldopa if you are on Monoamine Oxidase (MAO) inhibitors like phenelzine, Isocarboxazid used in the treatment of depression.
  • Always remember to inform your health expert if you are currently taking any OTC or prescription drugs like,
    1. tricyclic antidepressant such as Amitriptyline, Imipramine doxepin ,nortriptyline
    2. lithium ( mood stabilizer)
    3. levadopa (antiparkinson drug)
    4. other anti hypertensive drugs
  • Inform your doctor if you have following medical diseases , as Methyldopa should be used cautiously in these conditions
    1. Liver disease
    2. Kidney disease
    3. History of haemolytic anaemia
    4. Pheochromocytoma ( adrenal tumour)
If you are suffering from anemia or liver disease do not take methyl dopa.

Old people: Caution is advised for using methyldopa in older people.

Pregnant woman: Methyldopa belongs to FDA pregnancy category B. This means that methyldopa is safe during pregnancy and is not expected to cause any harm to the unborn baby. Always inform your doctor if you are pregnant or are planning for conception.
Lactating women: It is not known whether methyldopa passes into breast milk or if it could harm the baby. Do not take methyldopa with out first talking to doctor if you are breast feeding baby.
Avoid activities like driving handling heavy machinery etc which require you to be alert as methyldopa causes drowsiness.
Regular monitoring of blood count and liver function is required when on methyldopa to look for side effects. 
Methyldopa is available in the form of tablets. 
Use as directed by your physician, your physician prescribes depending on the severity of disease.
Use the complete course of medication as prescribed by your physician even though you feel better after one or two days of usage of medication. 
If it is almost the time of the next dose, skip the missed dose and resume your usual dosing schedule. Do not take two doses at same time to cover up the missed dose. 
In case of overdose contact your nearest poison control centre or emergency medical centre for immediate care by physician.
The overdose symptoms of Methyldopa are
  • Diarrhoea 
  • Increases drowsiness 
  • Slow heart rate
  • Low blood pressure ( fainting, light headedness)
  • Nausea vomiting
Methyldopa may cause following side effects
  • Dryness of mouth
  • Drowsiness 
  • Headache 
  • Fatigue
Consult your doctor immediately if notice following symptoms.
  • Allergic reaction like swollen lips, hives, difficulty in breathing, rashes. Peeling of skin etc
  • Weight gain
  • Jaundice (yellowing of skin & eyes)
  • Oedema of the feet
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Unexplained fever
Store methyldopa at room temp (15 – 30 degrees C). Avoid excessive heat, moisture or direct sunlight, never store in the bathroom.
Keep it out of reach of children. Make sure that any leftover portion is disposed off safely.
  • Use caution when getting up from sitting or lying down position as methyldopa may cause giddiness.
  • Inform your surgeon or dentist prior to any planned procedure regarding Methyldopa medication as it may increase the side effects of anaesthetic drugs.
  • Visit your doctor regularly for monitoring your blood pressure and pulse rate when taking Methyldopa.
  • Hypertension often has no symptoms, so you may not even feel that you have high blood pressure. Continue using this medicine as directed, even if you feel well. You may need to use blood pressure medication for the rest of your life.
  • Adopt healthy lifestyle changes like regular exercise, healthy diet, quit smoking, alcohol to lower your blood pressure and improve your overall health.

It is imp to read manufacturing packaging instruction carefully if available and always do not hesitate to consult pharmacist or physician for any information. 

Written by: Healthplus24 team
Date last updated: May 31, 2012