Atenolol Side Effects

Atenolol is a beta-blocking drug introduced in 1976 and prescribed primarily for cardiovascular diseases. Atenolol is also known by the trade name Tenormin.

Atenolol side effects are milder than those of its predecessor, propranolol, which readily crosses the blood-brain barrier, frequently causing depression and distressing nightmares. Atenolol was formulated with the blood-brain barrier issue in mind and it is designed specifically to prevent this interaction with brain function.

One of the more disturbing of the atenolol side effects is the increased risk its use brings in developing type 2 diabetes. This increased risk for inducing type 2 diabetes was found to be unacceptable in the United Kingdom. As a result the drug was downgraded in 2006 from a first-line treatment for hypertension and is now a less-frequently prescribed fourth-line medication.

Diabetics should be forewarned that beta blockers are known to blunt the nervous system’s response to hypoglycemia, masking the typical symptoms of tachycardia, sweating, and agitation which are the classic warning signs when blood sugar levels have dropped dangerously low.

Patients undergoing treatment for congestive heart failure should be aware of the atenolol side effects on the heart muscle. The drug is known to reduce the muscular strength of the heart, which can lead to serious complications.

When atenolol is prescribed for patients with congestive heart failure, it is best to start with the lowest dose possible and offset the muscle-weakening effects of the atenolol by taking additional medications that strengthen the heart or relieve other symptoms of congestive heart failure.

The beta-blocking activity of the drug can lead to atenolol side effects that affect the respiratory system. Dangerous bronchospastic reactions can occur when high doses are prescribed and extreme caution is advised when a history of asthma is present.

Unlike many prescription medications, including most of the entire class of beta blockers, atenolol side effects do not include a toxic accumulation of the drug in the liver. Atenolol is eliminated by the kidneys instead of the liver, making it an attractive option for patients suffering from diseases of the liver.

Med-Help is for informational purposes and should not be considered medical advice, diagnosis or treatment recommendations.

Latest Article: Tadalafil

Tadalafil is also known by the brand name Cialis. Cialis is used to treat impotency or to help maintain an erection. The drug is similar to Viagra and Levitra. Each of these drugs acts by blocking a chemical called phosphodiestrerase. However, Cialis is supposed to be more potent than Viagra. The reason that Tadalafil blocks phosphodiestrerase is because this chemical is used by the...

Related Articles: