Central effects of the angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitor, captopril. II. Electroencephalogram and body sway

Br J Clin Pharmacol. 1990 Oct;30(4):537-46. doi: 10.1111/j.1365-2125.1990.tb03811.x.


1. Effects of single doses of captopril (12.5, 25 and 50 mg) on the electroencephalogram (EEG) and on body sway were studied in fourteen healthy male subjects. Oxazepam (15 mg), as an active control, and two placebos were included in the study, together with a single dose of atenolol (100 mg). Medication was administered double-blind at 11.00 h, and assessments made before and at 2 and 4 h after drug ingestion. 2. There were no changes in the EEG with captopril. Oxazepam reduced the circadian rise in alpha activity, while atenolol decreased beta power. Delta activity was modified by both oxazepam and atenolol. 3. A reduction in lower frequencies of body sway (0.05-1 Hz) occurred with captopril, while the spectra were unaffected by oxazepam. Atenolol increased (P less than 0.05) activity in the frequency range 0.75-2.75 Hz. 4. These observations suggest that captopril is free of central effects such as sedation that may occur with beta-adrenoceptor antagonists. Reduced body sway with captopril could reflect improved integration of central and peripheral control of posture.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Controlled Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Atenolol / pharmacology
  • Captopril / pharmacology*
  • Electroencephalography / drug effects*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Oxazepam / pharmacology
  • Postural Balance / drug effects*


  • Atenolol
  • Oxazepam
  • Captopril