Drugs for Blood Pressure
AT1 receptor blockers
What are beta-blockers?
These drugs block the action of adrenaline and stop it from stimulating special receptors in the body known as beta-receptors. They are used to treat high blood pressure, angina and abnormal rhythms of the heart.
What are the common preparations?
Commonly used beta-blockers include Atenolol, metoprolol, propranolol, nadolol and sotalol.
What are the side effects?
- feeling tired and run down
- cold hands and cold feet
- nightmares (with some preparations)
- erectile dysfunction
- excessive slowing of the pulse
Who should not take beta-blockers?
- People with asthma (wheezing)
- People with circulatory problems (peripheral vascular disease)
What precautions should be taken?
- certain drugs may increase the effects of beta-blockers e.g. may cause excessive slowing of the heart
- you should not stop these tablets abruptly -this can be dangerous, especially if you have angina. Always renew your prescription early and do not discontinue without discussion with your doctor
Dr Nishan Wijenaike, Consultant Physician
West Suffolk Hospitals Diabetes Service