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Univasc Side Effects

Generic Name: moexipril

Note: This page contains side effects data for the generic drug moexipril. It is possible that some of the dosage forms included below may not apply to the brand name Univasc.

It is possible that some side effects of Univasc may not have been reported. These can be reported to the FDA here. Always consult a healthcare professional for medical advice.

For the Consumer

Applies to moexipril: oral tablet

As well as its needed effects, moexipril (the active ingredient contained in Univasc) may cause unwanted side effects that require medical attention.

If any of the following side effects occur while taking moexipril, check with your doctor immediately:

Less common
  • Blurred vision
  • chills
  • confusion
  • cough
  • diarrhea
  • dizziness, faintness, or lightheadedness when getting up suddenly from a lying or sitting position
  • fever
  • headache
  • joint pain
  • loss of appetite
  • muscle aches and pains
  • nausea
  • runny nose
  • shivering
  • sore throat
  • sweating
  • trouble sleeping
  • unusual tiredness or weakness
  • vomiting

Some moexipril side effects may not need any medical attention. As your body gets used to the medicine these side effects may disappear. Your health care professional may be able to help you prevent or reduce these side effects, but do check with them if any of the following side effects continue, or if you are concerned about them:

More common
  • Dry cough
Less common
  • Body aches or pain
  • congestion
  • difficulty moving
  • dizziness
  • feeling of warmth
  • hoarseness
  • muscle cramping
  • muscle stiffness
  • rash
  • redness of the face, neck, arms, and upper chest
  • swollen joints
  • tender, swollen glands in the neck
  • trouble swallowing
  • voice changes

For Healthcare Professionals

Applies to moexipril: oral tablet


Based on limited data, moexipril (the active ingredient contained in Univasc) appears to be generally well-tolerated. Moexipril has been evaluated for safety in more than 2,500 patients with hypertension; more than 250 of these patients were treated for approximately one year. The overall incidence of reported adverse events was only slightly greater in patients treated with moexipril than patients treated with placebo. Less than 4% of patients discontinued therapy due to adverse events.[Ref]


Cardiovascular side effects include symptomatic hypotension, postural hypotension, or syncope in 0.5% of patients. Less commonly associated with moexipril (the active ingredient contained in Univasc) are angina/myocardial infarction, palpitations, rhythm disturbances, and cerebrovascular accidents. Angioedema is a rare side effect that indicates a need to discontinue therapy.[Ref]


Renal side effects have included new or worsened renal insufficiency, defined as an increase in serum creatinine to at least 140% of baseline value, reported in 1% and 2% of patients taking moexipril (the active ingredient contained in Univasc) and hydrochlorothiazide-moexipril, respectively.[Ref]


Gastrointestinal side effects are uncommon, and include abdominal pain, constipation, vomiting, appetite or weight changes, dry mouth, and rare cases of pancreatitis and hepatitis. While elevations of liver enzymes have been reported, the overall incidence of abnormal laboratory values associated with moexipril (the active ingredient contained in Univasc) has been similar to that in placebo-treated groups.[Ref]


Respiratory side effects have commonly included cough in up to 6% of patients. Cough is the most common reason patients have discontinued therapy. Other respiratory system side effects have included dyspnea and wheezing.[Ref]

A retrospective study has revealed a significantly higher incidence of discontinuation of angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitor therapy due to cough among black patients compared with non-black patients (9.6% vs. 2.4%).

Several agents have been studied for treating cough with ACE inhibitors. No long term trials exist to allow a definitive treatment option. Cromolyn has the most data showing some benefit. Other agents studied include baclofen, theophylline, sulindac, and benzonatate.[Ref]


Patients with intestinal angioedema generally present with abdominal pain (with or without nausea or vomiting) and in some cases there was no prior history of facial angioedema, and C-1 esterase levels were normal. These symptoms resolve after stopping the ACE inhibitor.[Ref]

Hypersensitivity reactions to angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors may be life threatening. Angioedema of the face, extremities, lips, tongue, glottis and/or pharynx have been reported rarely in patients receiving ACE inhibitors. In addition, intestinal angioedema has been reported in patients treated with ACE inhibitors. It is recommended that any patient with dyspnea, dysphagia, or significant facial angioedema stop therapy immediately and avoid ACE inhibitor therapy in general.

Urticaria, rash, pemphigus, pruritus, and photosensitivity have also been associated with moexipril.[Ref]

Nervous system

Nervous system side effects include drowsiness, sleep or taste disturbances, headache, nervousness, mood changes, tinnitus, and anxiety.[Ref]


Hematologic problems include rare cases of hemolytic anemia. The use of some ACE inhibitors has been associated with agranulocytosis and bone marrow depression.[Ref]

At least one other ACE inhibitor has been shown to cause agranulocytosis and bone marrow depression. This has only rarely been seen in patients with uncomplicated hypertension, and appears to be more likely in patients with renal insufficiency and/or collagen-vascular disease (such as systemic lupus erythematosus or scleroderma). Although there have been no reported instances of severe neutropenia (absolute neutrophil count < 500/mm3) among treated patients, monitoring of white blood cells should be considered for those patients at higher risk.[Ref]


Hepatic side effects associated with the use of ACE inhibitors have included a rare syndrome that begins with cholestatic jaundice and progresses to fulminant hepatic necrosis and (sometimes) death. Experts recommend discontinuation of therapy with this drug if jaundice or markedly elevated hepatic serum enzymes develop.[Ref]


1. "Product Information. Univasc (moexipril)." Schwarz Pharma, Mequon, WI.

2. Persson B, Widgren BR, Fox A, Stimpel M "Antihypertensive effects of moexipril, a new ACE inhibitor, as add-on therapy to nifedipine in patients with essential hypertension." J Cardiovasc Pharmacol 26 (1995): 73-8

3. Dickstein K, Aarsland T, Ferrari P, Todd M, Stimpel M "Comparison of the efficacy of three dose levels of moexipril versus placebo as add-on therapy to hydrochlorothiazide in patients with moderate hypertension." J Cardiovasc Pharmacol 24 (1994): 247-55

4. Alderman CP "Adverse effects of the angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors." Ann Pharmacother 30 (1996): 55-61

5. Antonios TFT, Macgregor GA "Angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors in hypertension: potential problems." J Hypertens 13 Suppl (1995): s11-6

6. Abernethy DR, Fox AAL, Stimpel M "Moexipril in the treatment of mild to moderate essential hypertension: comparison with sustained-release verapamil." J Clin Pharmacol 35 (1995): 794-9

7. "Moexipril: another ace inhibitor for hypertension." Med Lett Drugs Ther 37 (1995): 75-6

8. Persson B, Stimpel M "Evaluation of the antihypertensive efficacy and tolerability of moexipril, a new ACE inhibitor, compared to hydrochlorothiazide in elderly patients." Eur J Clin Pharmacol 50 (1996): 259-64

9. Elliott WJ "Higher incidence of discontinuation of angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors due to cough in black subjects." Clin Pharmacol Ther 60 (1996): 582-8

10. Luque CA, Ortiz MV "Treatment of ACE inhibitor-induced cough." Pharmacotherapy 19 (1999): 804-10

11. Semple PF "Putative mechanisms of cough after treatment with angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors." J Hypertens 13 Suppl (1995): s17-21

12. Gunkel AR, Thurner KH, Kanonier G, Sprinzl GM, Thumfart WF "Angioneurotic edema as a reaction to angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors." Am J Otolaryngol 17 (1996): 87-91

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