Common Side Effects of Beta Blockers

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Filed Under: Heart Health
Last Reviewed 03/28/2014

Low-dose beta blockers are effective in treatment for atrial fibrillation and lowering blood pressure levels. They also help prevent damage to the heart when oxygen flow is reduced. 

Common Side Effects of Beta Blockers Research shows that taking beta blockers following a heart attack protects against arrhythmias that can develop as a result of scar tissue in the heart muscle, and thus reduces risk of subsequent cardiac events and sudden cardiac death.

Most Commonly Prescribed Beta Blockers

  • Inderal (propranolol hydrochloride)
  • Lopressor (metroprolol tartrate)
  • Toprol (metoprolol)
  • Tenormin (atenolol)
  • Corgard (nadolol)

Side Effects of Beta Blockers

  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • Depression
  • Flu-like symptoms

An additional side effect of beta blockers is depleted CoQ10, and should not be used by patients with asthma or active lung disease because they can lead to broncospasm.

However, you should never stop beta blockers on your own or abruptly. Sudden discontinuation of these drugs can precipitate angina and cause a heart attack.  It can also seriously threaten your blood pressure levels.  

In fact, beta blockers are one medication that you probably shouldn’t ditch for a natural alternative. Results from a study of 3,737 patients published several years ago showed that the mortality rate for those on beta blockers was 43 percent lower, and there was a 22 percent reduction in the need for re-hospitalization after a heart attack. However, I do recommend that you counter the depletion of CoQ10 by taking 100–200 mg of hydrosoluble CoQ10 daily.

For more information on treatments for heart attack and other cardiovascular problems, visit www.drsinatra.com.

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