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Beta-Blockers for Heart Problems

Beta-blockers are medicines prescribed by doctors to regulate abnormal activities in the heart. Accordingly, they are used in treating heart problems and high blood pressure. As the name implies, they block stress hormones from causing harm to the heart. They are also used in treating migraines and irregular heartbeat. For people who already have had a heart attack, beta-blockers are very helpful in reducing the risk of having another one.

Heart Conditions: Beta-blockers can be used for heart conditions such as arrhythmia, atrial fibrillation or accelerated heart rate. These medicines can also be used for angina pains.

High Blood Pressure: For people with high blood pressure, beta-blockers can help since they can lower the heart rate. However, beta-blocker intake should be regulated according to its prescribed dosage so as not to cause an abrupt dip in blood pressure.

Stress and Anxiety: When faced by a certain challenge or threat, the body activates its “fight or flight” mechanism. This triggers a number of symptoms such as high blood pressure, excessive sweating and increased heart rate. Beta-blockers help block these receptors in a stressful situation.

People taking beta-blockers may feel tired since these medicines slow the heart rate. One may feel out of breath, experience loss of sex drive or easily get exhausted over simple chores. Other side effects may include dizziness or lightheadedness.

Beta-blockers are not recommended for people with asthma since these medicines could trigger asthma attacks. However, people with emphysema or bronchitis may take beta-blockers. If breathing problems arise after taking a beta-blocker, contact your doctor right away.

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Welcome to our UpToDate library. The information shared below is provided to you as an educational and informational source only and is not intended to replace a medical examination or consultation, or medical advice given to you by a physician or medical professional.

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