Beta blocker/Bisoprolol withdrawal and breathlessness

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Hi. I am 43 yrs old and have been on beta blockers (initially metoprolol and then bisoprolol) for svt the last ten years. I had an ablation which went wrong and I ended up on higher doses of beta blocker after that (8yrs ago). They added in flecainide a year ago as they wanted to drop my bisoprolol down becacause I was still having daily runs and my BP was a bit on the low side. I have managed to drop the dose down to 1.25 bd over the last few months. Then 4 weeks ago, I started to have awful episodes of ?different kind of arrhythmia where i would feel very faint and shaky and it would last for a few minutes. Because they then wondered if I was having a ventricular arrhythmia, they stopped the flecainide and halved my bisprolol. However a week ago I had a couple of prolonged svt episodes so they stopped my beta blocker altogether and started me onto something new dronaderone (like amiodarone with less side effects). I was relieved at the thought of finally being off the beta blocker once and for all but all week I have steadily been feeling worse and worse. I know that there is likely to be a withdrawl period but it's been a week now and I can honestly say that I'm more breathless today than I've ever been. Even just sitting at rest. I can't talk or eat without stopping for breath all the time and I have never felt so unwell in all my life. I am aware that I can get marked postural tachycardia and if I so much as walk slowly to another room my rate climbs from 75 to 120 in seconds. Has anyone else experienced such marked side effects after stopping bisoprolol or another beta blocker? I would really appreciate any thoughts. R


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  • Posted

    I am not certain I can help much as I am not familiar with your heart conditions.

    Is your pulse "at rest" 75?

    Only mine is around 70/74 at rest and climbs to 115/120 when moving around quickly

    I was on amiodarone and bisop and felt breathless and tired much of the time as you do now and was then switched to dronedarone which improved the AF rhythm and made me feel better with hardly any breathlessness. My pulse was 59 for months. I was also on bisop 1.25 * 2 daily. Then for some reason my pulse shot up to 140/150 (for 4/6 weeks)and obviously breathlessness returned, until taken off dronedarone and put on digoxin. This limited the pulse rate to 65ish. Since then breathlessness under control as long as I take regular exercise 4/5 times a week walking.

    Unfortunately meds. for one person do not suit another. Think you need to have more discussions with cardiac consultants. There are withdrawal symptoms if you stop medications without treating the symptoms with a replacement.


    • Posted

      Thank you for taking the time to reply. I have always had svt since I was young and the ablation I had did not work. Hence why I've been on beta blockers and latterly flecainide ever since. I am on the list for another ablation but at the moment although I am still having runs of svt my main symptoms (I hope!) are related to coming off the bisoprolol and (far less likely) maybe starting the dronaderone (decisions all made by the cardiologists). Yes, I agree we are all different with how we respond to certain medications although that is why patient forums can be so useful as it can be reassuring to hear that others may be having similar problems that you may not have been fully warned about simply because it's very different to know the potential side effects of taking or stopping certain medications but it's a different matter altogether to actually go through it oneself.

      Thank you and best wishes


    • Posted

      Correction, having referred to my personal health record the reason my pulse jumped up to 140/150 may be due to the fact that my Cardiac consultant decided to stop the bisop completely when I started the dronedarone

      So when my system was clear of the bisop my pulse raced?

  • Edited


    I have been taking Bisoprolol only around 1 year, the dose 1,25 Mg. I am 10 years younger then you. I was taking it because of short spvt of af episodes from time to time.

    I am currently at around a Month and a half since I stopped taking Biso. In that time, on majority of days I felt sicker then ever in my life (compared to before BBs, and compared to awful days while I was on BBs.)

    My resting pulse before BBs was 70-80. Then my resting pulse with BBs dropped to 60-ish. A few weeks after stopping BBs, my resting pulse jumped to 100, and it would jump to 130 even if I would walk to the kitchen or bathroom.

    The same as you, I could barely talk to people (even for a 30-60 seconds) without getting breathless.

    Talking on the phone was impossible. Raising a voice was impossible. Bending down was horrible. Getting up from bed was insanely hard with strange heart rhytms, pain and extreme vertigo.

    Also, suddenly after stopping, I started to have insane anxiety attacks from time to time, which I didn't have before (BBs block adrenaline from our body, so our heart, brain and other organs don't have to deal with it. And now, once we stop BBs, our body is confused and doesn't have a clue what to do with all that adrenaline in our body, and then we start to have anxiety and tachycardia.

    Also, during BBs, since adrenaline receptors are blocked by BBs, our body creates more and more of those receptors and they become more and more sensitive because they are trying to "find" the adrenaline. Now again, imagine a mess when Beta blockers are gone, and our body have to deal with insane levels of adrenaline, and when we have twice as much receptors than we did before BBs.

    Luckily, it seems that over time, our bodies will realize that we have too much adrenaline now, and the body will try to adjust, with lowering the amount of those newly created recpetors, and the body will eventually try to go back to it's homeostasis, how it worked before BBs.)

    Now, after around 45 days, it is slightly improving, but it still feels as if I am miles from being "normal" again.

    If you have been taking BBs for a few years, it will probably be very, very hard.

    Some benzos could help in the first few weeks, to slightly lower tachycardia and anxiety.

    Also, drink a lot of water, healthy food, magnesium, sleep a lot if possible.

    On days when you will feel good, try to make a few steps around the house.

    Good luck, but be prepared that it will probably took a few weeks until you will start to feel somewhat better...


    • Posted

      You don't know how grateful I am to hear this. Honestly, thank you so much. As you say, talking on the phone is just not worth it, it's impossible to tell my children what to do (as can't raise my voice/speak quickly) and getting out of bed I have chest pain as well as unbelievable tachycardia just walking to another room (slowly). I think some of us are more sensitive to beta blockade than others and so it's understandable that we will miss the effect more but nonetheless I have never felt so unwell in all my life. I do have some moments through the day when I feel a bit better and I get lulled into a false sense of security, do a bit more (than just sitting- as I'm used to dashing around at 100mph all the time usually!) but then it always comes back to bite me and I feel dreadful again and end up going to bed. I'm anxious to get back to work as soon as I can but I honestly do not see how I could even feel safe to drive there, let alone do a busy long day. I don't think the cardiologists appreciate how awful it makes you feel.

      Anyway, thank you so much again. I will persevere. If you can, let me know when you feel back to "normal". Although right now I'll take anything over feeling like I do right now.


    • Edited

      No problem, Rachel. I am glad if it will help you.

      Anyway, I stopped Bisoprolol because it was causing me strange feeling of being ill all day, I had huge breathing problems, and every 2-3 days I was unable to walk more than 2-3 minutes (while before Bisoprolol, I would walk brisk for 1 hour every day without any problems).

      My doctors told me that Bisoprolol shouldn't be doing these problems and "nobody" believed me, more or less. Luckily, I found this one and other forums on internet and suddenly found 100s of people with exactly the same problems.

      Then I decided to wean off from Biso, and I have tried to search infos from 100s of other people who have stopped taking BBs.

      I have saved some posts from all around the internet on my computer.

      Anyway, I hope that it is allowed to post some random answers from the internet here.

      Some of the useful replies:

      1. Overall, the rebound effect (paradoxical reaction) is the result of the organism's automatic attempts to return to its basal state (homeostasis) after having been altered by the primary effects of drugs. Because a characteristic of living beings is their ability to maintain a constant internal environment by self-adjusting physiological processes, homeostatic mechanisms are present at all levels of biological organisation, from simple cell mechanisms to the most complex mental functions.

      Medical scientists have found that the over-production of Adrenal hormones raise the blood pressure and can disrupt the normal beating of the heart. So... most blood pressure medications attempt to block or inhibit adrenal hormones. Unfortunately, this blocking action also blocks the patients energy and negatively effects physical strength, among other side effects.

      Quitting toprol is complicated, there is much more than just withdrawal from the drug itself. Toprol suppresses all kinds of processes, like kidney, heart, adrenalin, hormones & many more. It takes them all and puts them in a jar, then puts a lid on it. When you quit taking it, the lid comes off the jar and all these things come out like fireworks going in their own direction, they have forgotten how to communicate with each other & this takes time to relearn. Sorry to say, but people die getting off this drug, do not belittle it and don't expect any emergency room people to understand the problems getting off this drug, the first thing they say is it only takes a few days (they don't know about the jar effect).

      It depends on the individual when it comes to completely weaning off the drug. My cardiologist mentioned that some people do take up to 6 months (not wanting to scare you here).

      See, your body is now producing more catecholemines (adrenaline and noradrenaline) than normal to compensate for the fact they have been blocked for over a year! The adrenal glands (and the pituitary) take time to find steady state.

      2. sorry to hear your suffering from anxiety feelings its been about 6 weeks now since I came off Bisropolol and I can gladly say I no longer have feelings of anxiety I know how you feel it's a horrible. I am no longer out of breath or any heavy feelings in my arms and legs and just that dreaded feeling of doom which I had every day whilst taking that drug.

      -- Came off the bisoprolol (for hypertension) and the symptoms mostly resolved after a month or two.

      (Yep, runny nose, hayfever symptoms, sinus-like headaches, post nasal drip and a couple of years of trekking to and from ENT appointments. Lots of different meds but nothing worked.)

      I think the drugs mess up my hormone metabolisation and, for me, this ends up causing migraine.

      -- I was taken off bisoprolol (cardicor) because of horrible side effects and because it made my blood pressure go too low e.g. 81/65 I did not taper though as I was told it was ok because I was on the lowest dose. However I still am not right 3 months later with sweating, (hot flashes in the day and night sweats) sometimes nausea, still low blood pressure and tingling in my hands and feet and sometimes an internal tremor which I think I have discovered is related to dehydration!

      I read elsewhere on this board that sometimes it can take months for your body to adjust.

      I have improved and sometimes I feel almost “normal” just for a few hours at a time! Does anyone have any experience of this?

      3. (8 years on Atenolol): Thanks for your response! Yes, I was really hoping for some input myself, but now that it's been 3-4 months for me, I am doing much better. It was a hellacious couple of weeks, but after about a month or so, I was pretty much back to normal. The high HR and palps stopped after about two to three weeks, and everything just gradually settled from there. My BP is still a bit higher than I'd like.

      4. I am a little over a month of being free of Atenolol. Still getting rebounds, not a bad as it was....It messes w/ my vision too. I think it's not a case of getting Atenolol out of one's system as I read so much about online, but your body getting used to being normal again. It screws with so much...I just hope it didn't permanently damage anything, like my thyroid.

      5. I was only on BetaBlockers for 3 months before I said I's had enough.. I can hardly imagine trying to get off after a year or years ! I went through enough terror with just that short time. They must be one of the most powerful drugs that the body gets dependent on.. I really thought I would never feel normalcy again.. I really thought it was the "beginning of the end" ..

      Thank God I made it through. I guess some people are more sensitive to BB's than others. We here are those unfortunates so good support, patience and persistence is worth their weight in gold.

      I have been off for about 3 months and I think I still get episodes of palpitations. But I am confident that I have made it through. This website was a tremendous support for me.. Just knowing I wasn't imagining all of it..

      -- This is a bit of an update! I am now very well and all the horrid effects that I was experiencing have all gone away. It took about five months altogether before I felt I was back to my old self!!

      6. I have been off the Toprol XL for two months now. I still experience periods of rapid heartbeat and roller coaster blood pressure. I was on only 50 mg a day, and weaned off slowly. I am still having headaches, and visual disturbances. My doctor wants me to go on Amlodipine, a calcium channel blocker, but my online research shows almost as many problems with it as the Toprol.

      7. if you want to do a quick comparison, my pulse with the beta blocker was in the region of 62 to 66, when I withdrew, in the first week it was in the region of 100-120, in the second week it went down to the high 90s, and now it's in the mid 80s. I still suffer from the odd spell of palpitations, either due to anxiety or the new drug I'm taking (a calcium channel blocker called Plendil, which has been known to raise the heart rate)

      8. I had issues coming off of metoprolol as well ;tapered dosage for 10 days then stopped.Pulse rate, blood pressure shot up very high and a lot of anxiety as well.My cardiologist never told me about withdrawal.He also did not start me on another med;I found out later this was my main issue, not having another med to start on immidately.It took me about 2 months to feel almost normal.

      9. I've been off for 2 months and feel more normal now. The first two weeks off it, I felt worse. After that things SLOWLY got better every week. At this point, I still experience frequent symptoms, but much milder I can almost ignore them. smile

      I only took metoprolol for 2 months to slow my heart (my bp is normal) due to a temporary heart event.

      When I weaned off to half a pill, every other night, I was more sick the following day after I took the pill.

      10. The first 3 months off the meds was extremely difficult and challenging. The progress to getting better is SLOW. But I wanted folks to know that it is possible to get your life back after getting off this med.

      11. It took me 6 months to get off of this stuff.I was taking it for 10 years which I was told for MVP.

      12. I certainly can't say what'll work for you, but after weaning for about five or six weeks or so, I finally reached a point where I just decided to tough it out cold turkey regardless of the withdrawal symptoms I'd have to endure. It wasn't easy, and I had some absolutely horrible days. I think I went to the ER about five times total throughout the entire ordeal, and two or three of those times occurred after I had gone cold turkey. After about three weeks into the withdrawal period I finally started to feel a bit better. Until then, I could hardly walk a single block without feeling as though I was going to have a heart attack. It wasn't until late into the fourth week that a day finally came when I actually began to feel normal again. This experience was by far the worst 10 weeks of my life, but somehow I managed to pull through. I have to admit that my heart aches for those who're still struggling, though, for I wouldn't wish this sort of thing on anybody. If anything, it actually angers me to no end that many in the medical profession write this off as if it's some sort of a passing problem or a psychological issue.

      13. Day 40. Mostly I feel good but this week, my pulse and BP are higher than usual for no apparent reason. My friend the doctor says it could take a month or two to clear the body completely. Is stores in your cells and liver. I'm trying not to panic that trouble is starting again.

      14. (Taking BBs 18 Months) Im going through something similar too. i was on memetoprolol for a year and a half. Just a small dose is all I could tolerate. I would stop it for a week and try to get off it then end up getting back on it. Really messed my body up. A month ago I got off it. I still have an adrenaline rush a couple times a day but the biggest annoyance is the fast heart rate when im walking or trying to clean the house. Does that seem normal for the "adjustment" period? Im not sure if ill ever be normal again. Im really losing hope.

      15. I've been off of it for months, and my blood pressure is fine. ...but when I was weaning, I never thought I would ever be able to completely get off, and I never thought that I would ever feel normal again. If you can hang in there and let time work for you, it will be worth it...and I honestly don't know if I would have been able to hang in there without this thread. Remember, all of us has been through this, so we understand. You can do this. We're proof that it can be done. At some of my lowest points, I would reread the thread and it made a huge difference.

      Rachel, but remember, each of us is different, and each of us have a different health problem.

      I hope that you will be successful to. But again, I have read stories from people who didn't have any withdrawal symptoms. Then some people suffered for only 1-2 weeks, while other suffered for 2-6 Months.

      And for some, it was just too hard after 2-3 Months and they started to take BBs again, because the pain, tachycardia, anxiety and other problems were too hard and too painful.


    • Posted

      Bob, many thanks indeed for taking the time for that post.

      It was most informative and helpful I have ever read on here.

      Worth many (private) consultations


    • Edited

      Wow. This is so incredibly helpful. Thank you so very much! You should write a book on it. You have clearly done your research! It's so interesting as the cardiologists who I have spoken with genuinely don't seem to understand that the symptoms can be so utterly disabling. Especially when I"ve only been on 1.25mg bd. Whereas I expected the beta blocker to floor me when I started them and I guess just accepted the side effects although I was revising for important exams at the time and the fatigue was just awful, I did not expect this. However, I have been seen today and nothing else points to the cause of breathlessness other than the explanation of tachycardia and withdrawal. I will keep you posted if anything else comes to light but as you say returning to this thread will make a difference as it already has done today.

      Genuinely cannot thank you enough.


    • Edited

      Hi Bob

      I know its a few months ago you wrote your post but hope you can reply to me. I was also taking Bisoprololat 2.5mg dose. I was feeling depressed (never had before) and decided to reduce the dose to half by cutting the tablet in half. I felt a bit better. Still got chest tightness at times. So decided to cut it to half a half tablet but cutting in again.Ive now stopped and its day 6. My chest is tight and my pulse rate shoots up to about 110 just getting up. My blood pressure is ok around 115/75 as an average. As its been quite a while how do you feel now? How long before you felt more normal again? I really do not want to feel i have to start them again (Im 49 years old) for the rest of my life. Thanks for your interesting posts.

    • Edited

      Danny, hi

      Well, I stopped taking Bisoprolol in December 2015, and I felt horrible (the same as when I was taking it) for the next 4 weeks, only with a slight improvement.

      Unable to take deep breaths, breathing was extremely slow, no matter what I was doing, feeling like a have a flu, depression, feeling cold all the time, unable to walk on some days, feeling like I have 80 (and I am in 30's)...

      Then after 28 days, my heartrate went to 90-100 all the time while resting, it seems that I needed 4 weeks to clean my body from Bisoprolol.

      Since I have paroxysmal tachycardia, the current state where my body was oversensitive to adrenaline, caused me to have a few bad episodes with really high HR that lasted long.

      So, I had to go back to BBs again.

      Currently I am trying to find a lower, titrated dose of other BBs (not Bisoprolol) which will both lower my HR and which will cause more tolerable side effects.

      About you and stopping BBs, each of us have a different condition.

      Some of us really shouldn't be stopping BBs, it seems.

      I hope that you talked with you doctor, because whatever medical condition you have, it will be worsen for some time after you stop BBs.

      But in some cases, it can be really dangerous, remember it.

      If your doctor told you that it is ok to stop, some people get better after 1-2 weeks, but some have huge problems for 2-3-4-5-6-12 Months.

      Dizziness, feeling extremely anxious until your body readjusts, tachycardia for weeks or months, very high blood pressure, palpitations, etc

      Also, majority of the medicine will be out of your body after 1-2 weeks.

      But in poor metablizers, it can take much longer (it seems that my body is of that kind).

      Also, even when you dump the majority of the drug out of your system, some of it will still be stored in your brains, lungs, heart and all over the body, and it will take Months to completey get rid off it (it will be released slowly from time to time in your blood again).

      And the 3rd thing is, even when you remove all the drug from your blood, and later from you heart, brain and lungs and from the whole system, then your body will need to readjust to a new era, without drugs.

      Again, that readjusting period lasts for 1-2-4 weeks for some, and 3-6-12 Months for others, based on how long have you been taking the drug, which dosage, how fast your body metabolizes drugs, how sensitive your body is to adrenaline (with or without drugs), how anxious your body and brains are in general.

      So, there are tons of factors and it will affect differently each one of us.

      But please, one more time, ask your doctor first before stopping Beta blockers.

      Good luck

    • Posted

      Plus, Danny, I was taking 1,25 od Bisoprolol.

      But, if you are a poor metabolizer, then 1,25 Mg will build in your body, and it will have an effect as 2,50-3,00 Mg for "a normal" person.

      Also, for fast metabolizers of drugs, even 5 Mg will feel like 1,25 or 2 Mg for someone else.

      From wikipedia about this:

      "Drug reaction testing uses a genetic test to predict how a particular person will respond to various prescription and non-prescription medications. It checks for genes that code for specific liver enzymes which activate, deactivate, or are influenced by various drugs.

      There are currently four genetic markers commonly tested for: 2D6, 2C9, 2C19, and 1A2.

      This testing has been done for some time by drug companies working on new drugs, but is relatively newly available to the general public. Strattera is the first drug to mention the test in the official documentation, although it doesn't specifically recommend that patients get the test before taking the medication.

      There are four possible categories for each marker: poor metabolizer, intermediate metabolizer, extensive metabolizer, or ultra-extensive metabolizer. Different testing companies may call these by different names. Extensive metabolizers (that is, people who are extensive metabolizers of a given type) are the most common, and are the type of people for which drugs are designed. Up to 7% of Caucasians are poor metabolizers of drugs metabolized by the CYP2D6 enzyme.[1]

      People who cannot metabolize a drug will require a much lower dose than is recommended by the manufacturer, and those who metabolize it quickly may require a higher dose. Some drugs, such as codeine, will not be effective in people without the requisite enzymes to activate them.

      People who are poor metabolizers of a drug may overdose while taking less than the recommended dose."

    • Posted

      Sadly, before I took a steriod, my BP and HR were naturally low and my heart rythm was basically even, wonderful gift from God.  Only a couple of times a year I would have just a little arythmia lasting less than a couple of seconds.  It was one of the few things my health had going for it. 

      I just started getting off of Atenolol, and it is a nightmare.  I was on it for two months due to my adrenal glands being on overdrive due to an adverse event with a steriod.  My heart rate and blood pressure went very high for hours during the event and there was possible collateral damage present even after the steroid went out of my system per my cardiologist.

      Because the effects lasted past the time, 7 days, when the steriod was supposed to be cleared from my system, and my BP and HR would not resolve itself past that time -- both were unusually high, so I took the beta blocker and it right away lowered both.  I was prescribed 12.5 mg, half of the 25 mg tablet.  I took that much for about a month and a little over a week,  Since I was experiencing more and more profound weakness, I started taking a quarter of the tablet amounting to 6.25 mgs. for the rest of that time which totaled up to the last 12 days.  My life was imploding still during that time.  Since the pill is not scored, it means that the medicine may not necessarily be evenly distributed throughout the pill (I AM NOT A DOCTOR NOR A PHARMACIST; however, this is what I understand from what a pharmacist told me).  And the last quarter pill I took gave me the same effect as though I had taken more than 12.5 mgs.  I was extraordinarily weak that day!  My doctor told me to get off of the beta blockers.  So I have.  

      My HR is unacceptably high -- resting rate at 79 to 81 BPM.  My BP is reasonable even low if I rest for a while like it used to be.  My BP is a little above what it used to be after activity -- though at times it can be Stage II hypertensive in the morning now when I get up and try to make breakfast in the morning. 

      If I could turn back the hands of time, I would never have taken that steroid, and if I had known then what I know now, I would never have gotten on the Atenolol and used Valium or any tranquilizer instead to mitigate the effects of the steroid.  In my opinion, the Valium would not have messed with my body like the Atenolol has (again I AM NOT A DOCTOR NOR PHARMACIST). 

      When I started this, I was underweight as it was, and now I have lost 13 pounds over the last two and half months that I could ill afford.  I am a petite person and I burn calories rapidly. 

      Do you know what is meant by a low metabolizer?  I am a cheap drunk, meaning that it doesn't take much to get me drunk.  Is this what is meant by a low metabolizer? 

    • Posted

      Low metablizers is about medicines (I don't know if it is related to alcoholol also. It could be...). It means that genetically some people have more of some enzines which are resonsible for dumping off the medicine out of our system (since majority of medicines are handled by the liver and the same enzymes over and over, from what I have read).

      On the other hand, some people have normal levels of that enzymes, and some people have low leves.

      The same as with everything in your body/blood. Some people have naturally too much of some blood molecules or some hormones, some people too low etc.

      From what I have read, you can't "improve" those liver enzymes. If you are a person with lower amount of those enzymes, you will just need more time to "kill" a single dose of a medicine.

      For example, in an average person, a certain drug will need 12 hours to drop from 100% to 50% of concentration in our blood (this is called drug's half life=how much it takes to drop from 100% to 50% of what you took in the first place), while for people with weaker enzymes, a half life for the same drug/dose will be 15, 18, 24 or even 30 hours.

      So, for a normal person, if you take a drug today in the morning, by the evening you will have 50% of that drug in your system and only 25% in the next morning, when you'll take a new pill.

      If you have a slower metabolism of drugs and if a half life is 24 hours in your system, it means that you will take one pill today in the morning and by the next morning you will still have 50% of today's dose, plus 100% from tomorrow's dose.

      Then, on the 3rd day, you will still have 25% of first day's dose, 50% of the 2nd day's dose and 100% from the 3rd day's dose. So, basically, after only 3 days of taking it, you will already have 175% of it in your blood.

      While a normal person will have 100% from today, 25% from a day before and only 6% from 2 days agao=131%.

      On longer samples (more days), you will accumulate more and more drug in your system (way more than a normal person who's enzymes work better).

      That means that after some time that you will really feel as if you are taking 2,5 Mg instead of 1,25 since your body will accumulate all this drug in your organs. Your BP and HR will be lower, but you will suffer from stronger side effects on 1,25 dose than 90% of other people.

      The same applies for people who metabolize a drug too fast.

      It stays in their system only for 6 hours instead of 12 hours (half life).

      So, instead of a drug dropping from 100% to 50% and 25% each 12 hours, they will have 100%=>50% (after 6 hours)=>25% (after 12 hours)=>12,5% (after 18 hours)=6% (after 24 hours).

      So, for them, it will "feel" as if they are taking 0,60 Mg of the same drug (and not 1,25), while you will feel as if you are taking 2,50 Mg of the same drug.

      (12,5 Mg of Atenolol is like 1,25 Mg of Bisoprolol.

      So, 0,60 of Bisoprolol is like 6 Mg of Atenolol.

      And 0,30 of Bisoprolol is like 3 Mg of Atenolol.)

      About high HR now when you are trying to wean off, I am trying to wean off from my BBs for the 2nd time now in 2 years. This time I am weaning off for 3-4 Months already (like: 0,60 Mg for one Month, then 0,50 for one Month, then 0,40 Mg for one Month, then 0,30 etc), and each time when I drop even from 0,40 to 0,30 Mgs, I have around 2 weeks of hell with resting pulse 85 almost all the time, and every activity (like walking to a store or anything) feels like hell and pulse goes to 110-120 easily.

      After some time it goes back to "normal", like resting pulse 70-75, and 85-90 while walking. It means that my body has now adjusted slowly to a lowered dose of medicine.

      But then, when I lower for another 0,10 Mg, I am experiencing the same hell again for 2-3 weeks all day long.

      I tried to wean off a few Months ago, that time I weaned off from 1,25 of Bisoprolol to 0,30 and then just stopped taking it. I didn't manage to pull it through that time. It was 2 Months of hell with high HR, high BP (which I never had), insane anxiety, sensitivity to sunlight, sensitivity to too loud noises, nausea all the time, dizziness, strange pain in body.

      So, I am doing it much more slowly, and it will take 6-9 Months this time this way. It is less painful, but it is still a horrible experience. (I have been taking BBs a dose 1,25 Mg only for 1 and half years now in total, and you see, it is a real hell trying to quit.)

      So, about your symptoms, they are perfectly normal. You took a drug for a short time, but it changes our system very fast. But if it will help you, remember that what you are suffering now in your withdrawal is probably 2-3-5 times less than for a person who was taking a drug for 1-2-5-10-20 years, or especially at higher doeses.

      Also, it goes in cycles, on some days you will feel good and on some days you will feel bad (both regarding side effects and regarding withdrawal symptoms. They will go in hot and cold cycles. 1 good day, 2 bad days, 2 good days, 2 bad days until good periods will be longer and longer and bad periods shorter and shorter.)

      So, good luck and I hope you'll get it through.

    • Posted

      Thank you so much for the explanation and getting back to me.  Eventually, I will have to exercise in order to get my heart rate down, but I will not do that until I can sleep the entire night through and wake up with a low resting heart rate for at least seven nights in a row.  Right now, I am taking slow walks,  Also, I wonder if there is a blood test to determine how much beta block is still left in one's system. 


    • Posted

      Also, I haven't had only had one and one-half of a good day since my adverse drug reaction.. 

    • Edited

      I am also wondering why there isn't a rehabilitation hospital for people trying to get off of this stuff.

    • Edited

      Trish, about heart rate, your heart is affected in 2 ways now:

      1. your body has too much adrenaline now when you stopped taking BB's (in fact, you have normal levels of adrenaline, let's say 100%, but with BB's, medicines were blocking a part of adrenaline, let's say 20%, so your heart and brains were affected by only around 80% of your total adrenaline in your body. And your body readjusts very fast to new conditions, to these 80%. So, now you are back to 100% of adrenaline and now your body needs some time to readjust, to learn again how to handle so much adrenaline. Until then, you will have too high HR and anxiety, which will eventually go down slowly as your body will ajdust.)

      2. no2 is: your heart beats slower on BBs, but also it pumps less blood in each contraction (let's say that heart pumps only 80% of blood in each contraction under Beta Blockers compared to 100% before BBs).

      So, your heart gets weaker as a muscle while you are on Beta blockers, it has to work slower and with less strength in pumping.

      Now, heart again adjusts to that scenario and it stays slightly weaker. When you stop taking Beta blockers, your heart is suddenly forced to pump 100% of blood in each contraction (the same as it has always been working), and heart is now extremely tired and fatigued because it is not in a good shape/condition due to Beta blockers.

      This is why we are having huge problems even while resting and especially if you want to walk.

      So, my advice, don't do any activity (except going to bathroom and similar) until your resting heart will get better (And try to sleep/rest a lot to bring your heart back in shape). And then, when you'll feel better, you can slowly start walking for a few minutes and try to stay in standing up position for 10-15-20 minutes (heart needs to beat stronger when we are standing up, so you are "excercising" even when you are only standing and doing nothing). And each day try to do similar activities for longer and longer and it should be fine.

    • Posted

      Hello, Bob! You seem to be very knowledgeable on this subject so I will ask you your opinion since my Dr won't get back with me.

      I'm 31 yrs old and for the most part in good health, fairly fit. 5 months ago I had a heart ablation due to ventricular tachycardia. The horrible episodes which caused me to pass out were stopped by the ablation but it did nothing for the terrible palpitations and left me with periods of elevated HR (120-130 resting). This has been exhausting and very inconvenient as I have a baby and a preschooler to take care of, not to mention running a business. My Dr didn't seem concerned and said the only thing to do would be a mild BB but he was reluctant to do so because my BP stays so low. 80s/40s is normal for me. The elevated HR became more of an issue, lately, however, and my Dr prescribed Pindolol which he assured me would not lower BP. I started the Pindolol 5 nights ago. 5 mg 2x daily. The first 2 days went well. I actually thought it might be helping. But the 3rd day I started feeling awful. Palps were far worse than before and my heart felt to be coming out of my chest. Went to bed, woke up with a severe panic attack. I thought I was dying. It finally passed, went back to sleep only to wake up to another panic attack and horrible tingling in my arms and legs and HR resting at 130. Then I remembered that the same thing had happened before when I was in the hospital just before the ablation after 2 or 3 doses of metoprolol. I didn't take another dose. I haven't had a dose for 36+ hours. I'm experiencing horrible anxiety, weakness, breathlessness, lightheadedness, dizziness, elevated HR, internal tremors, and feel about as sick as I've ever been. After only 4 days - 7 doses, total. What I'm wondering is, how long will it take to rid my system of this horrible drug after such a short time taking it? Any insight or advice you have would be very much appreciated! Not sure how much more of this I can take. Thank you!

    • Posted

      Hi, Highlandemmy! For the beginning, from what I know, ventricular tachycardias (VT) are far more dangerous than supraventricular tachycardias (SVT or SPVT) or than sinus tachycardia (a regular rhytm, but too fast for some reason, HR 100+).

      So, about your original disease, you will need to discuss with your doctor or a cardiologist how to continue regarding medicines.

      People on this forum are taking Beta blockers and similar drugs for 100s of different reasons. Some take them for high blood pressure, some take them after a miocardal infarction, some take them for benign palpitations, some take them for more or less dangerous arrhytmias, some have chronic heart failure, some are taking them for headaches/migraines, tremor, social anxiety etc

      Then, beta blockers will cause zero side effects in some people and 100 of side effects in other people. Plus, when you try to quit them, you will have classic withdrawal syndromes of elevated heart rate, palpitations, elevated blood pressure, anxiety, nausea, dizziness etc.

      But now, "the problem" is that each person has a different original disease.

      So, if you took Beta blockers for tremors, if you quit BBs, you will have higher HR and higher BP, but you'll survive fast without too many complications.

      If you took them for high BP, you will have problems during a withdrawal with too high (dangerous) BP, and normal problems with elevated HR.

      But, if you have arrhytmias as your original disease, you will suffer the most from too high HR and from very strong arrhytmias during a withdrawal.

      So, you see, all people will suffer similar problems during a withdrawal, but your original disease may make it even worse.

      So, for someone who has a healthy heart and who was taking BBs for headaches or tremors, we can say: quit them cold turkey, you will be fine eventually.

      But, if someone has VT or BP 180 before drugs, we can't just say: quit them and you'll be fine. Those people can suffer heart attacks, strokes and similar, sadly...

      I am not a doctor, just a user who was reading a lot on 100s internet pages. My advice is: talk to your doctor/cardiologist.

      You need to ask/find out:

      1. whether you can live without Beta Blockers?

      If he says yes, then try to wean off/quit.

      If he says no, you shouldn't stop them, since it can be deadly.

      2. if a doctor says that you need medicines, but you have huge problems with a current BB, you can try some other BBs, even though majority of them will lower your Blood pressure and cause numerous side effects.

      On the other hand, I have read that Calcium channel blockers can be given to people who can't tolerate Beta blockers and vice versa.

      Further, if you will need to take either BBs or Calcium Channel blockers, you still have an option to try 4-5 different BBs/CCBs and find the one which causes you the lowest amount of side effects.

      Also, there is an option of titrating a dose: to lower your dose in half and similar and to find a dose which will be high enough to prevent new episodes of VT, but which will, on the other hand, have less horrible side effects.

      3. for some types of arrhytmias (sinus tachycardia, for some types of Spvt) you can use a new medicine Ivabradine which only slows the heart and doesn't affect blood pressure at all. But I don't know whether it can be used for VT.

      On the other hand, there are some other medicines which can also be tried for VT outside of BBs, you need to ask your doctor for those options and then try one by one.

      4. there is probably an option with ablation

      So, don't do it on your own.

      Call your doc, arrange a visit, and ask all these questions for the future. Then you can try several different drugs and find the one which fits you the best, and find the right dose, or at least you can make a plan how to live and fight with your disease/drug's side effects in the future, and to weigh pros and cons of every scenario.

      On the other hand, if maybe you can live without medicines=awesome.

      But you will need to talk with your cardiologist about that.

      Good luck


    • Posted

      Thank you so much, Bob. Still trying to get in touch with my doctor.
    • Posted

      Has anyone reported numbness in their extremities while on or getting off of beta blockers? 
    • Edited

      I had a numbness in my fingers for a few days during a Bisoprolol's withdrawal.

      Also, from time to time I had a strange sensation around my lips.

      As if they are dead and numb.

      It would come and go from timeto time.

      More or less, if you are experiencing anything strange, it is 99% a withdrawal. Beta blockers are affecting our whole body/system and our bodies first readjust when we start to take BBs (compared to a state when we didn't take any drugs) and then after some time on BB, our body is readjusted and when you stop taking them, the body needs to readjust again which can lead to 100s of strange side effects and sensations.

      About extremeties, just look at it this way:

      1. first you had a normal state of blood vessels in your body, before BBs

      2. then Beta blockers have widened your blood vessels in the whole body to lower the blood pressure. Then the body has readjusted to this new state, of wider blood vessels.

      3. now, when you stop taking Beta blockers, your blood vessels will get very narrowed. That means that suddenly your extremeties may get a lower amount of blood until your body readjusts to a new (original) state. You may get lower amount of blood in those weeks because of that.

      More or less, Beta blockers will change your whole body, all organs and all vessels in your body.

    • Edited

      One more point.  When blood circulation is decreased as BB do to the limbs (cold limbs), the muscles atrophy  When they do, no more "heavy-leg" feeling.  Of course, even mild physical exertion will give you a great case of delayed onset muscle soreness with what is left of your muscles.  You likly won't get the prize of increased muscle because of decreased blood supply! What a wonderful drug!  Very little sleep, very little working memory, very little energy, a lot of apathy, a lot of depression...what a way to live.

    • Posted

      I found an article about this:

      beta-Adrenoceptor antagonists influence the metabolic responses in man at rest and during exercise. Impaired working capacity and muscular fatigue have been reported in patients on beta-blockers and this could be due to an altered substrate supply to the muscles. The results from several studies show that the main effect of beta-blockade on metabolism is decreased lipolysis, with less fat available to the muscles. This results in an increased carbohydrate demand to maintain an unchanged aerobic metabolism, and liver and muscle glycogen stores are more rapidly depleted. beta-blockade also results in decreased lactate release from the muscles, probably due to a membrane effect and/or changed perfusion. It is concluded that beta-blockade a) decreases fat metabolism in the muscle, which secondarily increases the use of carbohydrates during exercise, resulting in earlier hypoglycaemia and/or depletion of muscle glycogen with reduction of the working capacity, b) impairs lactate transport from the muscle but does not cause lactate accumulation within the muscle which could be responsible for muscular fatigue.

    • Posted

      wow, we must be studying in the same "library". I am still stunned that I did not research BEFORE subjecting my body and life to this drug.  Only after no one took my complaints seriously did I begin to search for the answer myself.  It is only my faith in God that gives me hope to get free of this drug.

    • Posted

      Thank you, hopefully, these withdrawal symptoms will resolve themselves in time and I will have no more periodic numbness/tingling.
    • Posted

      Hello again - hopefully they will. My Husband suffered terribly with all the symptoms whilst on and coming off of Bisoprolol/Warfarin, however after yet another urgent admission to Hospital was taken off the dreaded drug which was replaced with Digoxin and within a day or so they took effect. He still has some of the withdrawals but is feeling and looking so much better. During his visit to the Docs yesterday she mentioned how well he looked (although saying he is still quite ill) she did say that Digoxin doesn't do the same job as Bisoprolol, does Bob perhaps know why? Although he is feeling so much better he now suffers from very swollen legs and feet, they are very firm and a strange orangey/pinkish colour with intermittent pink rashes especially around the ankle joints. Does anyone else have these symptoms.

    • Posted

      "she did say that Digoxin doesn't do the same job as Bisoprolol"

      Drugs work differently because they are from different class of drugs. Majority of these drugs try to lower blood pressure or slow down tachycardias and arrhytmias, but each of the classes of drugs try to achieve it in a different way.

      Imagine if you need to lose some weight: that is your final goal.

      But you can achieve it in a several ways. You can eat more healthy. Or you can eat the same as today (unhealthy) but in lower portions than today. Or you can eat the same as today (unhealthy), but you will do a lot more of physical activity, so you will lose more energy than till today, and so you'll again lose some weight.

      So, each option works in a different way, but the final result is a similar=you will lose some weight.

      The same is with these classes of drugs: Beta Blockers (Nebivolol, Bisoprolol, Atenolol, Metoprolol), Calcium Channel Blockers and Digoxin (for example). Four mentioned Beta blockers are from the same class of drugs and they work more or less (like 90%) the same (Bisoprolol, Atenolol, Nebivolol). They all "attack" our B1 and B2 in our bodies and block the adrenaline.

      The difference between different Beta blockers are that some are newer, older, stronger, more selective towards heart/lungs (some are 3:1 selective towards B1-heart vs B2-lungs receptors, some are 4,5:1 or 9:1 selective etc.)

      So, they are the same in their basic action (blocking the adrenaline), but each of them will have slightly different side effects.

      So, the difference between Bisoprolol and Atenolol is very small.

      But the difference bewteen Bisoprolol and a Calcium channel blockers is much larger. They will both lower the heart rate and blood pressure, but they will "attack/alter" different mechanisms to achieve that.

      Beta blockers will block some percentage of adrenaline (this is why we have withdrawals and anxiety when we quit them), while CCBlockers will attack Calcium channels in our hearts. So, they will also slow down the heart, but with "attacking" a totally different mechanism.

      CCBs will be better/weaker (maybe your doc meant on that: some classes of drugs are stronger/better for treating your original disease) for each unique person and they will bring a totally different set of side effects connected with mechanisms whic they are attacking.

      Digoxin is the same, it attacks Na and K channels in our hearts. So, it again creates the same effect as Beta blockers or Calcium channel blockers, but through totally different mechanisms.

      Doctors usually prescribe BBs for majority of cases (as the first option), and they switch to different options for tachycardias like CCBlockers, Ivabradine, Digoxin if BBs are not well tolerated (bad side effects), or if BBs are not helping to that person etc. (or they switch to 10s of different classes of blood pressure drugs)

      Swollen legs and feet are probably from a new drug. The sad thing is that some people have 0 side effects from BBs or CCBlockers, while other people have strong side effects on each drug.

      So, if your husband needs to take some drug, he will have to accept that he will have some side effects on each drug and then you have to weigh pros and cons (which drug helps you the most with your illness, and which one has the least horrible side effects) and then decide which one he will be taking. Good luck

    • Posted

      Thanks Bob for your prompt and very informative reply - I will study your info but I am sure that swollen feet and legs are no comparison to all those dreadful side effects of the Bisoprolol. I'd like to keep in touch. Thanks againinf

    • Posted

      Hi am 67, last year I had throat cancer managed to get it treated immediately and during radiotherapy treatment because I was unable to eat or hold anything down for three weeks I became dehydrated my blood pressure dropped to 62 ! heart rate 200bpm called 999 had 3 litres of saline + and everything corrected itself stayed overnight and was prescribed BBs 1.25mg and aspirin plus cylacine which helped me to start eating again. My GP kept me on BBs even though she put a letter on my file stating she was happy for me to stop them, I was going to India for three months so she doubled my dose to 2.5mg. I had a FULL heart scan which was Normal just before I left.

      When I arrived in India my BP went up to 185/100 saw doctor in India went onto BP tabs. But after increased exercise after spending the last 12 months fairly doormant because of my cancer my BP started to correct itself so I had the opposite affect so after 2 months I stopped BP tabs and felt Ok.

      I have been fairly active since but started to feel weak and unwell, so decided to look at what the BBs were doing to me, checked BP before taking BBs to find BP was raised but after BP shot up 160/90 Heart rate dropped to 55bpm, I Halfed my dose and found I felt better BP was raised just after taking BBs kept on 1,25mg  and meanwhile arranged an appt at docs, told her my findings and she told me Just to STOP taking them 5 days after reducing my dose !

      Went Glamping the following week felt good until the last day of our holiday whilst tidying up to leave for home my heart went into a rythem all of its own !

      I have since had two similar episodes and had paramedics out, they said my heart was fine my BP was their main concern as it was 193/110 and said anxiety had pushed up the BP. He asked me what I was frightened of and I said that I was frightened of my Heart Stopping !

      Spoke to a doctor 3 days later as they could not see me for a week, after having another episode during a shopping trip and she said to go back on the smaller dose and stay on that ! I said no way am I going onto a drug for the rest of my life that I should not have been on in the first place, they seem to be unaware of how dangerous this drug is !

      Anyhow after reading this forum I feel that following my own instincts and quitting these BBs is critical to my future health, I can now understand why ERs are full ! Most of them are people like us on BBs !

      Still feeling Lousy but I am full of hope after reading these articles, just want to say thanks to you all for taking the time to let us know what has happened to you, so much so I had to tell you my story, will keep you posted I am only in my third week of ditching the BBs......

    • Posted

      Because Pharma would have to admit that their drug has the potential to be deadly.


    • Posted

      Hi Bob

      You were very helpful once before to me and i would like to ask your advice and understanding of these drugs again.

      20 days after stopping BB (Bis) i started getting palps. A while later started to feel dizzy off and on. Anyway went to see a cardiolodist and we did an stress MRI and 48 monitor of heart beat. He was happy that they are ventricular ectopics but said it might be better on BB so started me on Nebivolol 2.5mg. Because of the problems i had on BB before i only ever took half that dose. By the end of two weeks i was ill. My body didnt feel like my own. So he said stop them so i have. From when i started them again to now (stopped 21 days ago) i am dizzy everyday and that makes me feel sick. Ive seen a ENT and didnt think there was much wrong. Can really bad dizziness and fuzzy head everyday (some worse than others) be due to withdrawal of BB? The palps arnt so bad but wonder if thats because ive still got some BB in my body?

      Thank you Bob. Your advice on here is so very helpful. Anyone else dizzy coing off BB and if so how long for?

    • Posted

      Hi Danny.  Not Bob, but a person coming off these BB's after 6 years.  I have had palps, shortness of breath and the dizziness and unsteadiness on my feet on and off (got off them about 3 1/2 weeks ago).  A lovely person on this thread suggested I take more magnesium.  I was taking a calcium magnesium supplement but I added more magnesium.  It has really helped a lot.  It calms down the heart because magnesium affects muscle and of course, the heart is a big muscle.  Do some research for yourself and make a decision.  I found it was extremely helpful.  This takes a while to get off these thigns....

    • Edited

      Hi, Danny

      I stopped BBs 2 times (Bisoprolol and then Nebivolol).

      When I have quit Bisoprolol, I felt good for around 20-25 days, without any symptoms. And then, after 25 days, my HR jumped to 100-120 while resting all the time.

      My explanation is that my body was so filled with Bisoprolol (I was taking it for 1 year) and that it was stored in all vessels and cells and that it needed 20-25 days until those old amounts disappeared.

      Then it hit me for real.

      So, in my case, these are problems which I have been experiencing:

      1. HR while resting around 100 all day long for 2-3 weeks. Then it started to get lower, like 90-ish for 1-2 weeks, then 85 etc

      2. 3-4 weeks after a jump in a HR, I started to have anxiety and I was too sensitive to sunlight, light in general, loud noises. It got better eventually, week by week

      3. 1 Month after a start of a too high HR, I started to have unexplained bouts of dizziness, after walking or doing any activity. On some days, I needed to lay for 1 hour after any activity, because of insane dizziness. Also, when I was dizzy, I had problems with breathing (I don't know was it anxiety due to dizziness or some problems with breathing related to a central nervous system)

      4. other problems like nausea, headaches, pain in abdomen and lungs during a withdrawal, those lasted 2-3-4 weeks

      The same as you, I had some withdrawal problems (during the 1st attempt) and docs have put me back on BBs (this time Nebivolol). I also didn't want to take the full dose but only 1/2 or 1/3rd, but I still felt bad on it (dizziness all the time on Nebivolol, and breathing problems, as if my brain fails to send signals to my lungs to take a breath. I had less side effects than on Bisoprolol, but I still felt horrible).

      Anyway, after a few Months, I decided to wean off again, but slowlier this time (it lasted 6 Months this time) and it was easier.

      I have experienced the same symptoms as while quitting Bisoprolol, so I was less scared this time, since I have been through this before and all withdrawal symptoms repeated more or less in the same order as 1st time.

      So, about dizziness: I didn't have it while taking Bisoprolol, but I did have it on Nebivolol.

      But, I did have it both when quitting Bisoprolol and Nebivolol, as a withdrawal symptom.

      My advice about dizziness: try to walk even during a withdrawal, do some light stretching and excercise at home to get your blood flowing through your brain and your body. Drink a lot of fluids. If you feel dizzy, try to shower a few times per day. Also, when you have an attack of dizziness, try to eat some sugar or something.

      All I can say: I have been there twice and it goes away eventually.

      Imo, my biggest problem and a problem which lasted the longest is anxiety and chemicals in your brain which are totally out of balance after a few years of taking BBs which affect heart, but also our central nervous system.

      So, I needed 2 Months for my HR to settle down, but a few months for my Central nervous system to settle down.

      Also about dizziness, mine was gone after a few weeks. It starts randomly after 5-8 weeks of a withdrawal (not in the beginning, probably because you still have a lot of drug in your brain inside of a blood-brain barrier, and it takes some time to leave your brain-system), but it gets better each new week slowly. Just don't be scared, if possible.

      And ask whatever you need, good luck

    • Edited

      Hi Bob

      Thank you for your reply.It is so helpful to hear other peoples stories as you don’t feel alone and that no one understands.

      Much of what you write is like a mirror image of my issues on BB. 20 days after stopping BB for the first time (took them that time for about 6 months in total) I started getting palpations. After about another 3 to 5 weeks the odd dizzy spell as well.Some days no dizziness though. I went to see a cardiologist who carried out a stress MRI and 48 tape of my heart beat but was happy overall but said try this BB (nebivolol) as it works better that Bisoprolol. So I did.

      Two weeks after trying it I was in a terrible state. Always dizzy feeling sick and wobbly at times and like I was a zombie…all this on less than half a 2,5mg tablet!. So after taking to him he said stop it. So I did. That was 22 days ago and since then I’ve been dizzy most days and often can feel a bit wobbly although my legs and arms never actually wobble.

      Did you ever feel wobbly in your legs and arms Bob?

      Also the HR shoots up. But I knew that would happen from the first time I stopped BB. Walking along the high street today I looked at my fitbit and it showed 131bpm. I was only walking at a normal speed.

      Bob, headache? Yes… I have what is like a mild migraine headache that just seems to come and go all the time in the last few weeks. Was that like you? Also like you pain in the abdomen and chest tightness and the feeling that it is too much effort at times to try and talk to people and the tightness makes me cough.

      And like you it was if my lungs had forgotten to tell my lungs to breath…that seems to have gone now but I thought I was going mad thinking that.

      Why do you say take a shower a few times a day if dizzy?

      Its the dizziness that the main problem for me now along with the weak legs feeling. Its like a fog in my brain at times and I feel unbalanced yet went to a ENT specialist who said I have excellent balance so it must be in the brain I am guessing.

      One last thing Bob, I do feel scared and feel like giving up at times so your posts help me feel positive. Thanks.

    • Posted

      Hi, Danny

      I didn't feel wobbly.

      About other things:

      1. pain in abdomen and lungs when you quit BBs: when you take Bbs, they slow down your heart and organs, and some tests have shown that your muscles do atrophy to some extent due to less blood and food getting to them when you take BBs. So, when you take BBs, your body will be in a weaker shape.

      Add to this that if you can't walk too much while on BBs due to side effects like problems with breathing, feeling ill or dizzy, then you will walk even less than you should and your body will atrophy even more.

      Now, imagine that your muscles were at 100% before BBs with a normal amount of blood and food reaching to them.

      When you take BBs, you will get only 80% of blood and food, and your muscles will get weaker.

      Now, when you again quit BBs, your heart will start to pump faster and you will again receive more blood and food to your organs. This is why your muscles and lungs hurt now, because they are now forced to work at 100% instead of 80%, and more or less, they are growing back to normal levels as if you are going to gym or playing sports every day (even though you aren't doing anything).

      2. about dizziness, while on Nebivolol, well it is a side effect. I had dizziness all day long.

      About dizziness when you quit BBs, well BBs were making our blood vessels wider to lower blood pressure.

      And then, our body is adjusted to these wide vessels.

      When you quit BBs, blood vessels aren't that wide anymore, and it takes some time until our bodies readjust.

      Again, imagine if your blood vessels were at 100% before BBs. Then during BBs, they were at 120% (very wide). And now, when you quit them, they go back to 100%. But for some time, it is a shock for your body since suddenly less blood can get to certain organs (brain, in this case) due to this 120% to 100% change in vessels.

      Anyway, both pain in abdomen, lungs and dizziness will go away eventually.

      About taking a shower, I felt better better when I showered or put some cold water on my face, drink some juice right away. It helped during the worst days on withdrawal's dizziness.

      For the end, slowlier weaning off always help.

      But if you can't do anything about it anymore, magnesium, lots of water, vitamins help (my doc told me to always drink lots of water, not only during a withdrawal, because when you have more fluids in your body, you have a higher blood volumen and heart will pump slower). Also, low doses of Valium can help during the worst period (Valium will slow down your too high HR until it returns to normal, plus it will help with anxiety). I don't know how is it with your docs and Valium, my docs told me: feel free to take Valium during a withdrawal...

    • Posted

      Hi Bob, I'm trying to get information regarding stopping Bisoprolol.  My mum was on the medication for 3 months and after a three month review her medication was increased from 1.25 to 3.75, we expressed concern about this and the monitoring of it as he gave us another appointment for 3 months. My concern was that how would we know if her heart rate was slowed to a dangerous level to which he was very dismisive. When admitted to hospital she had 1 dose of 3.75 and her HR dropped dangerously low and they stopped the medication immediately but did not replace it with anything else or put her back on the 1.25. Two days later she arrested, thankfully they brought her back but did experience much distress which they could not explain and passed away. As you can imagine I am totally devastated and I am in discusisons with them as I feel the withdrawal of the medication was to blame and they are denying this.  From what everyone is saying in this discussion, it is not as unrealistic as they are making out. Would welcome your viewpoint and any other relevant information you may have.  I am not writing this to cause any alarm in anyway

    • Posted

      Hi, I am very sorry for your loss.

      About a withdrawal, I had insane problems with stopping 1,25 of Bisoprolol and 1,25 of Nebivolol and I needed months of weaning off to survive.

      I know what happened to me and how bad I felt. I think that I talked with 7 doctors about quitting BBs, 5 of them told me: it shouldn't be a problem, you should be fine after 1-2 weeks. You will experience minor problems.

      Only two of them told me: if you are feeling that bad when you have quit them, take Valium or Xanax for a 1-2 Months in order to calm down your central nervous system and to slow down your heart rate.

      I don't want to fight with docs, because we will again need their help in one way or another.

      But from my experience, they have their opinion and that's it. They have learned in books that quitting BBs is a piece of cake (if you wean off for 2-4 weeks), and probably they had 100s of patients who have quit those drugs without any problems.

      I don't know if we are crazy, different, too sensitive to this drug or what, but majority of people on these forums had a really tough time to quit BBs.

      I ended at ER 2 times during a withdrawal. I knew that it was a withdrawal. Docs would tell me: no, that is some disease, you need to take drugs again.

      Also, I tried to tell to some docs: I have read some forums and people on forums have more or less the same symptoms when they tried to quit the drug (as me).

      Docs would usually say: don't read forums, people there are crazy and they think that they have every single disease and symptom in the world. Don't read forums with diseases...

      So, there is no point.

      Whatever you say, they will usually say: books say differently, or our experiences with 100s of patients about that drug are different. It is all in your head and you probably have anxiety.

      Your mom could have passed away from 100s of reasons.

      But also, if she was old and with a weak heart, then yes, quitting BBs could have caused a huge stress to her body.

      I mean, it could happened even on drugs, but with quitting them abruptly, imo, docs have raised a risk for an incident.

      One doc told me: take BBs (1,25Mg dose) whenever you need. It's like taking a candy, it is a very weak drug.

      And then you have 1000s of people to whom even the tiniest doses ruined their lives.

      Again, I am sorry for you, but there is not too much what any of us can do. You can listen to docs, listen to your body and your logic, and listen to people who had similar problems and then taking something from each 3 sides and decide what is "true".


    • Posted

      Karen, plus, I will add more:

      1. if you have too high heart rate=you can die since your heart is beating too fast

      2. if you have too slow heart rate=you can die from long pauses between beats, or long pauses can create deadly arrhytmias from which you can again die

      So, for example, if someone is taking BBs for some heart disease (NOT tachycardia), like coronary artery disease, high blood pressure etc, there is a chance that this person usually has a normal heart rate, but will now develop a too slow heart rate.

      So, maybe your mother had too slow HR due to Beta Blockers and docs thought that they have to quit it right away since there was a chance for a sudden death from too long pauses (especially during sleeping).

      So, for example, in a situation like that, options are:

      1. if you stay on BBs=there is a 50% chance that you will die from a too slow heart beat (long pauses between beats)

      2. if you quit BBs abruptly=there is a 10% chance that you will die from a withdrwal

      I want to say: there are 1000s of scenarios and 1000s of different diseases and side effects.

      So, it is possible:

      1. that your mom had an original disease=and she would die without Beta Blockers or a similar drug, so she needed to take drugs

      2. drugs caused a dangerous pauses from which she could die=so they needed to quit it right away

      3. quitting drugs abruptly can kill an older person easily=but again, they had no choice, and that seemed less likely (especially since docs think that quiting BBs is not too hard)

      I wanted to say: docs think that quitting BBs isn't dangerous, but also: in some cases you can die without Beta blockers, you can die BECAUSE of Beta blockers, but you can also die if you quit them. So, whatever you do, you are in huge problems (and you can die, sadly).

      And things can easily go wrong in 100s of ways, sadly.

    • Posted

      Hi Bob,thankyou for your rely, I understand what you are saying about the many senarios.  I am still of the opinion that they did not explore the benefits or dangers and maybe should have returned to her dose of 1 tablet instead of 3.  They didn't explain anything and did not monitor effectively after.  We trust them explicitly but with hindsight we should go with ourv gut sometimes.  It just seems too conincidental that it happened 2 days later.  she also experienced this feeling of extreme 'breathlessness' that everyone is talking about.  Ultimately it was too much for her, if they had have monitored her more i feel if could have been prevented even for a short time and she woould not have suffered.  Thank you for your knowledge and I will continue, as you do, to fight inprder for them to isten.

    • Posted


      I was taking Metoprolol ER for about 1 year (12.5MG).  My doctor told me that I could stop taking the medicine because it wasn't helping with my PACs.  I stopped this medicine cold turkey on the advice of my cardiologist who said 12.5 MG is a very minimal dose.  I do not have high blood pressure, in fact it is never above 115/70.  The sole purpose for the beta blocker was to see if it would help with the PACs which it did not - in fact it made them worse.

      I stopped the medicine a month ago and have been on a roller coaster of a ride.  I'm trying to see if my issues right now are from withdrawal as I never had any of these symptoms before taking the beta blocker.

      I do not have these symptoms all day, they come and go.  

      1. I get dizzy ( the room is NOT spinning - I just feel off balance myself)

      2. My legs sometimes feel very weak

      3. Lightheadedness and shakiness at times - especially if I'm hungry (I've checked my blood sugar and it is within the normal limits)

      4. ANXIETY like I've never had before- almost like a panic feeling for no reason.  I did not have this prior to beta blockers

      5. Upset stomach that comes and goes with loose stools which I am assuming is from the extra adrenaline as I used to always have to go to the bathroom when I was nervous before beta blockers. 

      I have talked with my cardiologist about this and he was very vague and said it could be from withdrawal and that everyone responds differently.  I recently wore a 14 day holter that showed everything is ok with my heart.  I've had the stress tests, echo, etc and it all shows my heart is healthy with a lot of PACs which are actually a lot less since I am not taking metoprolol.

      If anyone can shed some light on these symptoms and how long they may last I would appreciate it greatly.  

    • Posted

      Hi, Kim, this is a classic withdrawal.

      In simplest, look at it this way:

      If you didn't have some problems before Beta blockers, and now 1 year later you have some problems, there are only 2 options:

      1. either it is a withdrawal from a Beta blocker

      2. or you have some new disease with 100s of symptoms in the last few weeks

      But, luckily, since majority of people are experiencing similar withdrawal symptoms, you will be fine over time.

      When I have weaned off from Beta blockers, I had:

      1. elevated resting heart rate for a few weeks, and it would come and go even later (but only for 5-30 minutes) and it was much milder and milder over time

      2. anxiety which lasted the longest. I was scared of everything for no reason, and I never had those problems in my life before a withdrawal.

      Also, apart from anxiety and being scared, I was personally too sensitive for a few weeks: to sunlight, loud noises, listening music or watching any movies which involved any action/murders etc.

      Also, I would get too excited or too scared like 10x times more easily than in normal times.

      If I would talk to someone over a phone for 10 minutes, I would need to relax and breathe deeply for 10-30 minutes after that to calm down (crazy stuff).

      Or if I would watch some sport match, after 5-10 minutes, I would get too excited and I would need to turn the Tv off to calm myself down.

      Also, if I would have an argument over anything with someone, adrenaline/blood pressure/heart rate would jump in a second.

      Luckily, it gets better and better each new week, but it will take a few Months until your brain will be 99% normal again.

      3. I had a lot of nausea also (Beta blockers do affect lots of mechanisms in our bodies. They also affect bowels and stomach, so when you quit BBs, it takes some time until this part of your body also readjusts.

      Also, an upset stomach comes from both a withdrawal plus anxiety (again, due to a withdrawal).

      4. dizziness for no reason and headaches are classic symptoms also.

      About dizziness, sometimes you can have dizziness for days.

      But sometimes, I would get dizziness if I would stand for too long, or walk for too long or do any activity (during a withdrawal).

      I never had those problems in my life before a withdrawal.

      Again, it will get better over time.

      From your symptops, I had 4 out of 5. I personally didn't have weak legs, but I have read on forums that a lot of people had shaky legs and they had a feeling that they will fall.

      About your doc, you can read on this forum that it happens all the time.

      I am not sure whether docs really don't know nothing about a withdrawal (majority of people have the same problem) or we are 1 out of 10 or 20 people who have a withdrawal.

      I really have no idea what is the answer, but people on these forums have exactly the same withdrawal symptoms over and over, and yet docs never know anything about it, or they usually say: you will be fine in 2 weeks, it's a tiny dose.

      About a tiny dose, well it is a lowest dose, but still, it is a very strong medicine (and you can see that now when you have quit and you can see how much this drug has altered and readjusted 10s of mechanisms in your body).

      Good luck. If you will have any problems or questions, just ask people here.

      Or if you will have some bigger problems, always call your doc since people can get long episodes of arrhythmias, angina attacks or even more dangerous things in some rare occasions.

      Good luck once again, I hope that you will be fine in a few weeks. 

    • Edited

      Also, a few tips:

      1. drink A LOT of water, it will help

      (when we are well hydrated, our heart beats slower. So, currently when you have a too high HR due to a withdrawal, water will help to some extent)

      2. magnesium helps in lowering heart rate in a natural way

      3. take vitamins

      4. try to sleep a lot during first few weeks so that you body will get more energy to fight with a withrawal

      5. when you will feel better, try to walk and lo some light excercise more and more each new day to get back into a shape, that will return your heart into a normal state

    • Edited

      Hi Bob - Your posts have been a life line to me.  I was put on 25 mg of atenolol (beta blocker) even though my 24 hour bp was fine and the doctor said I had "white coat syndrome". Within a week I was not feeling well but didn't make the connection. Then after 3 wks I was at the airport and suddeny felt like I was going to pass out along with feeling lightheaded and naueous. The next morning the same thing happened and I had to cancel my trip and fly back to Canada because I didn't know what was wrong with me. I made the connection to the atenolol and that night stopped taking it. That's when things went from bad to worse. I ended up in emergency 2 nights later with bp of 195/115 and my whole body was shaking - hot cold - tightness in chest and uncontrollable anxiety.  The doctors forced me on amlodopine (5mg) and all my bloodwork and tests ekg xray cat scan etc came back normal. By the time I saw my family doctor again (1 week) I had seen 3 other doctors and they all told me the drug would be gone from my body. My family doc said the same thing and that there must be something else going on. I transferred to a private doctor and essentially got the same thing from him - he thought I was just a very nervous person and that it would not be the atenlol and said I was a complex case. Many more tests later all negative with the exception of elevated cortisol AM and then low AM cortisol and slightly elevated TSH. Not one medical professional has acknowledged that I may be sufferring from rebound and not one medical professional has even mentioned that I should have tapered the dose.  I had 4 weeks of being incredibly ill - constant nausea, huge fatigue so unable to even walk, chills, loss of appetite, searing headache that would appear once a week, anxiety and body vibrations.  Then at exactly 28 days it felt like the eye of the storm had passed. I am now at 46 days and still not 100% - AM nausea - nervousness - jittery feeling in body and legs but the intensity and duration of the bad waves have lessened. So I am praying I can make it through this. I went off all bp meds despite the private doctor asking me to promise him I would take them. I had some very bad waves and my bp was very high but I toughed it out and now my bp is usually in the 130/85 range. I think from what I have read of your posts I am displaying the classic symptoms of rebound and cannot believe that something this horrible can be essentially ignored by the medical community. Hoping to have my life back soon but wanted to thank you again for your posts as they helped me believe that this was most definitely an adverse reaction followed by rebound to beta blockers - I must have read them 20 times. CAT


    • Edited

      Cat, no problem.

      I am glad that those posts will help to some people.

      Your symptoms are 100% classic withdrawal symptoms.

      What is worse, docs at least usually say: tapper a drug for 2-3 weeks.

      In your case, they didn't say even that.

      Luckily, nothing too bad happened and you survived.

      I am currently at around 120 days off the drug, and I am getting more and more normal with each new week.

      In the first few weeks, the biggest problems were elevated HR while resting, high blood pressure, nausea, dizziness, HR getting too high on any activity, feeling breathless on some days.

      After some time, those things will slowly settle down (elevated HR will stay the longest), but then you will get anxiety which will last for Months.

      It seems that heart (heart rate) and anxiety (due to Beta blockers killing/putting to sleep our receptors of adrenaline, and now you need a lot of time until those receptors which were semi-dead during Beta blockers, to readjust to adrenaline and to a normal life).

      In my case, anxiety and being nervouss and too sensitive to everything lasted for some time, but I am now around 90% normal (the same as before Beta blockers) and it will probably go back to 100% in upcoming Months.

      If you are better now, try to live a normal life.

      If you get an anxiety attack or something, sit down, breathe, drink water, relax and open some pics on your mobile phone which relax you or open some music which relax you and try to calm down.

      Attacks should be weaker and weaker and last way shorter over time.

      Lately, when I feel a surge of adrenaline, it returns to normal state after 2-3-5 minutes, while a few Months ago, I needed 30-60-120 minutes to return to a normal state after any fight/argument with someone or after watching sports or something.

      So, luckily, you have made it and the worst part is finished.

      HR will be normal over time and anxiety and being too sensitive will also end soon.

      So, if you'll have some bad days again (it happens, it goes up and down all the time during a withdrawal), just remember that you will be normal again in 2-3 Months and that will give you a strength.

      If you are feeling better, try to "expose" yourself to more and more everyday situations which may cause some anxiety.

      For example, if you are scared that your HR will jump if you'll walk one mile, then go out and walk half a mile.

      If nothing happens later that day (my HR would always go slightly up 1-2 hours after walking during a withdrawal), then go out on the next day and walk half a mile again.

      After a few days, start to walk 3/4 of a mile.

      If nothing happens, start with 1 mile after 2 weeks etc.

      You will be scared at first, but if nothing will happen, you will easily kill the anxiety regarding walking and regarding high HR after walking.

      If you have anxiety regarding some everyday things (I had problems with loud music, couldn't watch sports, couldn't watch horror and action movies), then slowly try to do those things.

      For example, if watching sport for 2 hours will get your HR jump to 150, then start with watching sport for 10 minutes per day.

      Once you get too excited, stop it and turn off the Tv.

      The next day, try watching sports again for 10 minutes.

      Over time, your brain will relearn how to handle strong emotions again and your body will relearn how to handle your adrenaline while watching sports for 30 and 60 minutes in upcoming weeks.

      So, you will be better and better in a natural way over time since your body will return to a normal state.

      But since we are not people who had anxiety before drugs, feel free to slowly "force" yourself into situations that feel uncomfortable currently (due to a withdrawal and due to this chemically induced anxiety) and you will be stronger and stronger each new day and you will see that nothing will happen in those normal everyday situations.

      And that way, you will "kill" majority of remaining anxiety.

      About docs, don't fight with them.

      Who cares?

      If they say it is not a withdrawal, who cares?

      You know how you are feeling currently and there are 1000s of people around the world who have been EXACTLY through the same thing (withdrawal).

      So, you can't win that fight against docs.

      The only thing that matters is that you are not talking drugs anymore, that you can (luckily) live without drugs and that a worst part of a withdrawal is finished.

      So, concentrate only on your health and on your problems.

      Also, we should take drugs only if there is no other options.

      In some cases (your case), drugs do more harm than good.

      If you'll have more problems or questions, just ask.

      But I am sure that you will be almost completely fine in 2-3 Months.

      Just drink a lot of water, take vitamins, magnesium, try to walk, do light physical activity etc.

      Good luck


    • Edited

      Bob! Well said! I am 100% focusing on getting better and am done with doctors and tests. All that does is raise the stress levels. I never had HR issues but when bad waves came through my bp would go to the 160 to 180/90 to 110 levels. After stopping atenolol I then went off amlodopine after 10 days. My bp started regulating except of course when I would go to the doctor and then it would shoot up. Next they tried to put me on an ace inhibitor. I did not take it and as I mentioned despite some pretty bad nights my bp started hitting 120/80 numbers 10 days ago and on average is now in the 130/85 range - I am fine with this as I am still in withdrawal. I wasn't on anything other than the beta blocker so my goal was to have nothing in my body to establish a true baseline without drug interference.  Just this week I have energy to increase from more than a 20 minute walk so I am going on my first bike ride this AM.  I am doing everything you mentioned including the water and vitamins. Oh I had the same sensitivity to light and noise as well. What a horrible horrible drug. Ciao! CAT

    • Edited

      Oh, that sensitivity to light and loud sounds (I had problems with sunlight and needed to have curtains all day long for some time in the beginning. My family thought that I am crazy, of course, lol.

      About your blood pressure, try to measure it at home if you have a monitor 2-3 times a day (morning, noon, evening).

      If you'll have a normal pressure at home and a higher pressure at doc's office, then it is a 100% just anxiety.


    • Posted


      I am currently weining off 100 mg metroprolol that I have taken for a month with horrible side effects. The dr said to go cold turkey but I have been halving it every 2 days. I do feel better and tonight I am supposed to go to 12.5 but my Electrophysiologist said to get off now S I am having an ablation for 18000 pvcs soon like within 2 weeks and can't have any in my system. If i finish at 12.5 tomorrow is it reasonable it will be out of my system within 2 weeks since I only took it for 4. I had all the bad symptoms while on it and they seem to be lesssening as I am lessening the dose. Any help is appreciated

    • Posted

      I was told to come off Bisoprolol 5 days before an EP study/Ablation, by day four I was in an ambulance to A&E for my Venticular Tachycardia so after four days the beta-blockers were no longer protecting my heart and so an Ablation would have been possible. Except that they put so much Bisoprolol in me, that they couldnt induce ny VT when I went for my EP study.

      I imagine two weeks is easily enough.

      This isnt to say however that the bad side effects go after a few days, here I am a month without beta-blockers and still feel as if my brain and my lungs are not working, I wonder if they have been permanently damaged?

    • Posted

      Beta blockers start to affect your body more and more the longer you take them.

      So, each new Month, they will change your body more and more (for example, after 6 Months compared to 2 Months).

      If you have been taking it only for 1 Month, you shouldn't have a withdrawal, or if you'll have it, it should be relatively mild (compared to people who have been taking Beta blockers for 6 Months, 1-2-5 years).

      So, if you feel ok currently, lower the dose in upcoming days and don't take it anymore.

      If you'll have some elevated HR, it should last only for a few days in your case. Try to stay calm.

      About some Metoprolol in your blood after a few days, well, you will probably still have some of it in your blood, but as you see, as others have wrote, after a few days, the protection is almost gone.

      Also, it is tricky to some extent since:

      1. if you quit Beta blockers a few days before a study, you will surely have some of it left in your body, so results will be slightly affected by Beta blockers

      2. on the other hand, you may have a withdrawal, so your results may be even worse in those days (too high heart rate or too many palpitations)

      The perfect solution would be to go to a study when you are clean from drugs like a month or two, but it almost never happens.

      Anyway, lower the dose in upcoming days and then try to have a nice amount of days off the drug before a study.

      And drink a lot of water once you'll quit the drug to flush it even faster from your blood and system.

      Good luck

    • Posted

      I am 120 days off Beta Blockers, and my lungs are still not working perfectly, but they are getting better and better each new week.

      It seems that a lot of Beta blockers is still in our brain and cells (or: our system is clean from drugs but it still hasn't returned to a previous state completely).

      For example, if I felt 100% bad on Beta blockers, in the first weeks after quitting I felt only 50% bad, and today I am at 10% feeling bad.

      So, it is still not as it used to be before drugs, but it is way better each new week.

      With brain, I still do have some brainfog and some weaker memory.

      But also, it is slightly improving over time.

      It is possible that you have a permanent damage, but it is highly unlikely.

      It is more likely that you will just need months or years to get back to a normal state.

      Relax, try to live a normal life and I hope it will be better in upcoming months. Good luck


    • Edited

      Hi 60 - I broke a record and had 9 days of feeling pretty good, prior to this the record had been 4 days without a bad wave/bad day(s). Now just following the 9 good days I am coming out of day 4 of constant nausea and a general feeling of nervousness and the internal vibrations. These are all symptoms I have had from the beginning but now they are way lower in intensity.  Have to keep reminding myself it is the drug and that time is what it takes to get my body back in about a long haul. I was only on the drug for 3 weeks but I guess the fact that it really made me sick plus stopping it cold turkey has landed me in this process that takes time to resolve....Cat
    • Posted

      I was on them for a short time as well and they have brought on migraines when coming off to which I have had to have hydrocodone to combat. I think beta blockers are just so bad for our body and not how God intended for it to work but that is just my opinion.

    • Posted

      I have had a migraine once a week since I went cold turkey. The 1st one was piercing and lasted 4 days. After 8 weeks I still get them about once a week but now for a day or so and they are mild. I used to get cold spells but now am getting hot sweating spells BUT I am now able to have what I call a low level life - exercise - golf 9 holes - cook - but no way can I go back to work yet when I am in a bad wave for a few days.  Beta blocker was not meant for my body that is for sure!
    • Posted

      It is so crazy that we got all this for just a short time on the beta blockers;( were you on them for pvcs
    • Posted

      No - doc said he put me on them for high bp and anxiety. My bp was fine over 24 hours when I wore the halter. As for anxiety I am not an anxious person at all. I actually told the doc how great I was feeling and then he said he wanted me to go on atenolol even though I was deemed "white coat syndrome"... needless to say I no longer see this doc - I am steering clear of medications doctors and tests (they were all negative and/or normal other than elevated cortisol) for the next while.

    • Posted

      I used not be anxious either but this med seemed to of caused some
    • Posted

      I went to the hospital for a panic attack and they put me on a beta blocker 5mg just that day! And after the second day i started getting horrible symptoms! Tight neck and chest! Arms feel swollen, strong headaches, dizziness, feel like my body isnt here, depressed, when will all this go away? :'( I feel like I have no life

    • Posted

      Hi  Cat,  It seems that we  are weaning exactly at the same pace!  Today I make 60 days off bisoprolol, but I feel worse than ever. I have been improving week after week;  but last night my pulse suddenly went high (110s) and I haven’t been able to get it down.      Do you still get episodes of high pulse?
    • Posted

      Hi Ileana! No - high pulse is the one symptom I have not had. I was hit more on the blood pressure volatility, tight chest, nausea, fatigue etc...just passed day 70 and crossing fingers but I have been really improving in the last 4 days. I was improving week after week and then took a big dive down until last Wednesday when a bunch of symptoms disappeared. I still have some nervous anxious type feelings but am now golfing 9 holes - and had friends for dinner - and just really feel about 85 to say 90% normal. Absolute bar none worst thing I have been through in my life. Next goal is to go back to work. Oh I also finally found a specialist who believed what happened to me. Looks like the beta blocker messed up my hormones so I am now getting those sorted....
    • Posted

      Hi  Cat,   Thanks  for your response.  I am happy for you.  Unfortunately, I wasn’t so lucky.  After 60 days off-bisoprolol,   my pulse went to 130 and I couldn’t get it down.   I am back on bisoprolol.   Apparently, my parasympathetic system is not working properly due to the time I the drug.  Thanks again and good luck!
    • Posted

      Ileana, how long were you taking Bisoprolol, which dose and how long have you been weaning off?

      When I tried to quit them for the first time, around 1-2 Months of weaning off from 1,25 Mg to 0 Mg was too fast for me and after 50 days off drugs, I had attacks with too high pulse and had to go back on BBs.

      This time I went back only to 0,60 Mg dose and after 2-3 Months, I decided to try to wean off again, but this time I weaned off for 7-8 Months (0,10 Mg each Month), very slowly.

      Even this way, it was tough and a long road, with a lot of too high heart rate for Months (but attacks were weaker than in the 1st attmempt) and lots of withdrawal-induced anxiety.

      Currently I am 150 days off drugs. On some days I still do have some withdrawal symptoms (heart rate going from 70 to 90-95 for half an hour for no reason). Anyxiety and other symptoms are gone.

      On the other hand, each person has a different disease.

      If you had a normal pulse before Beta blockers and too high pulse after quitting them, then this was a withdrawal.

      But if you had a too high pulse even before Beta blockers and now you have it again, then it is not because of Beta blockers but because of your original disease.

      So, did you have too high heart rate before Beta blockers?

      How long have you been taking Beta blockers?

      For which disease?

      Which dose?

      How long have you been weaning off to 0 Mg?

    • Posted

      Bob, these posts have helped me tremendously. I was on Atenolol 25mg for nearly two years along with Dilzem CCB and Candesartan for blood pressure. About 6 months ago I had a panic attack that landed me in hospital for two days while tests were run. All good, and I went home, nothing found in brain or wrong with heart. I continued taking my medication. About 8 weeks ago I had another attack but only went to doctor this time.I was very anxious and tearful then and I could not understand what was going on. Myself, I suspected my medication was in part or full responsible. Having researched about BB I decided to stop taking the BB and continue the other treatment. It went fine first two weeks, but now I understand I am I am in BB rebound. Anxiety, heart palpitations, weakness, no appetite. It is hell. I am on day 21 off them. The CCB helps slow the heart too, so that does help the, symptoms sometimes. I know my doctor would not approve, but at some point I will have to go back. I am hanging on not going back on them but I know they cause depression and mood changes.
    • Posted

      Hi  Bob,    thanks  for taking the time to reply my post.     I took  bisoprolol  for almost two years  and wean for three weeks only.  

      My story is very similar to yours  and many others here.   I had preeclampsia a couple years ago and  was put on 1.25 mg  of bisoprolol to get my pressure back to normal.   After 7 months I was traveling and forgot to take the medicine, my pressure went up and I started having tachycardia.  So, my cardiologists double the dose.   A few months ago I ask my cardiologist if we could reduce the dose or change it to a different type of medicine, and he said no, you are fine the way you are. So,  I went to a different doctor that  prescribe me an ARB,  and  schedule a  three weeks weaning for the bisoprolol,  which after reading this post  I realize was too fast.     During the weaning and a couple of months later  I was relatively ok.  I experienced most of the symptoms described in here, but I thought I was going to make it.   Then as I explained before;  60 days after my last dose of bisoprolol my pulse went high  and stayed there.  Now I am back to 2.5 mg of bisoprolol. 

      I am still trying to figure out what to do now,  I guess I’ll keep on bisoprolol until my pulse stabilizes again   and then try to wean again this time very slow.   But,  I am worried that the damage to my nervous system has been irreversible.    I appreciate any comment or suggestion you could give me. If I have to take the medicine for the rest of my life I can live with that,  just want it to be the lowest possible dose.

    • Posted

      Thats an interesting comment? " the damage to my nervous system has been irreversible.", is such a thing possible?. I have been off Beta=blockers for six or seven weeks now, I had no weaning off period, the cardiologists just told me to stop taking them five days before my EP study, but I was suffering bad side effects anyway.

      Thing is, I still feel as if I akm on them, the cardiologist claims this is impossible and that there must be something else causing the symptoms I got as soon as I started taking them, (lungs dont feel like they work, asthmatic cough, teirdness, fuzzy head), so I am wondering if my receptors got blocked, but never recovered even after the beta blockers left my system?

      For instance, a couple of days ago I found my heart beat at rest to be 53, its been decades since I have been an athelete with such a slow heart beat.

    • Posted

      Bob: I am on day 80 - Have had periods where I feel almost normal and then wham I get hit with lots of nausea and anxiety like adrenalin symptoms (tight chest, anxious feeling legs, internal shaking/tremors).  The rest of the old symptoms have pretty much leveled off. Do you think this is likely still the process of my sympathetic nervous system adjusting and still dealing with the beta receptors? My husband says the rollercoaster ride (the bad waves) are not as intense now - he is right but it sure is a tough ride. Not knowing alos may contribute to anxiety......
    • Posted


       Since you been so kind and helpful, Can I ask you a couple questions?

      -        After your second attempt to withdraw, when you went back to nebivolol, how long it took you to feel fine again?  It’s been two weeks since I am back on B-blockers and I feel worse than ever, my pressure and pulse are fine, but I just feel terrible.

      -        How did you manage to cut the pills to get 0.1 mg off?  Mine are a little hearts and I don’t see how I could get so precise cuts in them.

      -        After every time you reduce the dose, how long it took you to feel fine again?


      Thanks again for all your help! 

    • Posted

      My he several times a day drops to 46 and I feel like I can't do much went to er and was told to stop my 10mg proponal I stopped that I had heart block maybe due to the bb I was taking 10mg per day I quit 4days ago and have had 3 ekg cardiologist told me I needed to go straight to hospital and get a pacemaker due to the fact that I could pass out and hurt myself my he was 52 at her office I told her I wanted to wait I felt these were all side effects from meds still in my system she said the meds are already out of your system she didn't want to take no as a answer but I feel like I want to give my body a chance to see if I return to normal before submitting to a pacemaker so glad you wrote this about slow he

    • Posted


      If you have been taking a drug (Propranolol, Beta Blocker) for a longer period, of course that it is still in your system even though you have quit it.

      Wait for 2-3-4 weeks and see whether your heart rate will slowly go up when you will be off drugs.

      If a heart rate will slowly go up, then this was all because of Beta blockers.

      If your HR will remain 50 2-3 Months after quitting Beta blockers, then it is due to something else.

      Good luck 

    • Posted

      It sounds like I've had a similar problem. I was administered DEPO-MEDROL ( corticosteroid) about a year ago  and it messed up my whole ednocrine system. I'm still trying to  recover: unstable BP, hot flashes, sweats etc. Never had that before....

      By the way, have you fully recovered from your symptoms? Wish you well!


    • Posted

      Hi Danny, hopefully you're still hanging around.  My biggest concern right now is the dizzy, off balance feeling accompanied by weak legs.  Did yours ever go away?  If so, how long did it take?

      I'm almost 5 weeks since I dropped the BB, but like in the past, it was about the 5 week mark where these symptoms started picking up again.

    • Posted

      I experience a shaky, tremor feeling most of the time. My voice has weakened and cannot raise my voice or I feel like passing out. Mostly I feel like lying down and going to sleep. Doctors do not listen and mine has stated it is not the drug. I know it is. Hope you continue to improve. I am on it for HBP and arrythmia, do you know what one might be put on if they request a different drug? Thank you.

    • Edited

      For people that stumble across this old thread, it is nearly two years since I came off Bisoprolol and all medicines in fact.

      The breathlessness and feeling my lungs didn't work along with nighttime oxygen levels of 85% seemed to clear up after a full year.

      All the other nervous system problems have not only remained, but are slowly getting worst and worst.

      I lost my job because of this, and now am so exhausted that I am fighting hard not to become bed-bound, my skin is numb, I have quite bad peripheral neuraphty now, have trouble walking when I get tired, people think I am drunk as I am so off-balanced, bad brain fog, something really bad happened to my nervous system.

      NHS are no help, even though my cardiologist has another patient who suffered the same from Bisoprolol, he apologises for saying initially he thought it was anxiety, but because that anxiety label is on my notes, everybody uses it as an excuse to do nothing.

    • Posted

      hey I am 41 days off metoprolol. yesterday I was in the er for a pulse of 180.since then my pulse went go below 110 and my blood pressure is high. I'm so scared. I have so much anxiety that I feel like I'm falling out of a plane. they put me on cartia to help with my heart rate. it was but now its bad again. and I get so sick from it being high. almost pass out and nascious. could this still be from the beta blocker rebound?

    • Posted

      I have the same thing. I'm on day 41 and I was starting to feel better and then I ended up in the er with pulse of 180. I can't get my my blood pressure down. I get so anxious that I feel like in falling out of a plane. I feel like I'm dying sometimes. very scary

    • Posted

      How high is your BP? High pulse can be the result of hyperthyroidism, that is when your thyroid gland produces too much of a certain hormone which in turn increases your metabolism and your heart rate. My mom had hyperthyroidism and high pulse. Her metabolism became so high that it burned all the fat in the body to the point that her skin was hanging loose especially on her hands. You just need to remember that BB affect adrenals that work hand in hand with the thyroid gland. They are all part of the endocrine system. So BBs interfere with you whole body's hormonal balance.

    • Posted

      wow.ok so I had my thyroid checked which was fine but its crazy that you say that because my adrenal glands are producing way too much aldosterone and no renin. so my cardiologist is thinking I have conns sydrome. that's so crazy. will my hormones ever go back to normal? I've been off the beta blockers for a month and a half. I'm so scared.

    • Posted

      sorry my blood pressure run like 130 /85 but I'm on a medicine called cartia

    • Posted

      The sooner you stop worrying about the hormonal level, the faster your body will recover; it's a catch 22, the more you think about it , the more "worry" hormones your body produces. And that in turns puts your adrenals to stress. Goodle Andrenal Fatigue. You might want to start taking calming tea or supplements.

    • Posted

      well my bloodwork showed 55 for aldosterone and 0 for renin so they want to do surgery on my adrenal glands. they don't believe in beta blocker rebound where I live. they think it's all in your head. I feel so alone so thank you for responding. I even had to wear a 28 day heart monitor today because every night my pulse goes to like 160. I do take adivan everyday to help calm me. but I will def look that up. thank you so much

    • Posted

      also my cortisol levels were normal. sorry I forgot to write that

    • Posted

      you have done great service to other readers. thank you. i stopped 40mg propranolol 7 days back. I had trembling, anxiety, high bp, elevated heart rate, dizziness. its getting better now

    • Posted

      very true~ thank you bob. i am on my 29th day off metropolol . like most of us here it has been a really rough ride. breathing issues are almost gone except when it's hot and i"m walking long distances. i still get anxiety attacks and trembling of knees and arms that usually get relieved by a light meal. sleep has greatly improved from 3 hrs average to 7 hrs now at first i needed sleepaid but now i only take magnesium softgels and ashwagandha immediately after dinner. for the first time in six months i was able to do stationary bike for 20 minutes bp stable at 120/80 average while heart rate peaks at 122 . i sincerely hope everyone will get the healing they need in Jesus Christ our Great Healer's name.

    • Posted

      Your adrenal glands are the biggest part of what they diagnose as anxiety or panic attack. Your nervous system consists of two parts: sympathetic and parasympathetic. The first one is "fight and flight" part, the second one is " relaxation and digestion". So if the second one is not properly working then you have problems with relaxation ( you always feel tense, don't get enough sleep, nervous, easily get irritated, high bp, high pulse, problems with digestion). Now the proportion ( or tune up) of those two parts of nervous system should be 30/70 approximately where sympathetic is 30 and parasympathetic is 70. That enables your body to fully relax. Now if sympathetic system is dominant then your bp, pulse etc can easily go up since your adrenals are already stressed up and you are already tense. And then you can easily get into anxiety spiral whenever you run into some kind of stressful situation that you used to handle very easily earlier.

    • Posted

      today has been day 50 and I had so much adrenaline today that I thought I was gonna die. I seriously felt like I was falling out of a plane. my blood pressure and pulse went wayup. .also my body feels like it's on fire.. is this all still from the beta blocker? I'm so scared that it won't go away. I feel like I'm gonna end up in a mental institution. if I didn't have adivan I don't know what I would do. its the only thing that brings it downa little.. plz help with answers because I'm such a mess. thank you

    • Posted

      i'm so sorry to hear about your ordeal . i'm not sure if this will help, whenever i get palpitations i would lie completely flat (firm bed or floor) and i do glottis breathing (pls check it in youtube), helped a lot. Blood pressure should have been in control by now if the bp med that your doctor gave you "fits" if not ask him/her for his professional opinion . i also found out that vit b complex and other supplements can add to palpitations. i already prayed for you -that may God give us the strength to persevere and give us the grace and healing.

    • Posted

      Sorry for the late reply, been in Spain for a few months. My remaining symptoms are the drunk zombie feeling with balance issues and slurred speech when I get tired. It seems at its worst when it is cold so I wonder if blood viscosity changes when its cold and my brain doesn't get the same amount of oxygenated blood? When Spain was still hot, I hardly got the symptoms at all except my balance issues struggle when I walk in the sea and look down without a visual reference point. As Spain got cooler at night, I noticed the symptoms coming back, now I am back in England they are back to their full intensity, the whole back of my head and neck feel very strange and sort of whirly.

      When I was in Spain, I was doing a lot of cycling and walking and eating healthy food so a lack of these cannot be contributory factors, like wise Anxiety, if I was prone to anxiety, surely moving alone to a foreign country on a tight budget and not speaking the language would be when such a condition would be at its worst?

      I am currently awaiting a brain MRI, though the neurologist has already made up its mind beta blockers cannot possibly be to blame, and I will probably be better off having CBT.

    • Posted

      Was prescribed Ativan to help with anxiety but I am scared to take in fear of what this Beta Blocker has done to me. I do not want to have to go through withdrawal of another drug but I need help. It is 43 days off the BB but it still feels like doom. I fear everyday that I am having a heart attack. I was doing good for about a week then bam downfall again along with new symptoms of upset stomach and more. At this point I have now had 10 ekgs and other test. Does the Ativan help keep you calm without a lot of side effects?

    • Edited

      Your situation is a classic anxiety case ( constant fear, stomach upset etc). You CANNOT be having a heart attack for weeks. What you have is a fear of it. And that's a completely different thing. If you want to avoid anxiety drugs ( anti-depressants etc) you need to start doing progressive muscle relaxation techniques and cognitive ( behavioral) exercises. The ideal situation would be to find a good psychotherapist. In spite of the symptoms that you are having, the problem is not in your HEART it's in your MIND. Your body mimics heart attack ( or rather that is what you think you are having) because you allowed fear. The way to combat it is live through it, allow these panic attacks to show to you what is that most they can do.... You will notice that their strength will start subsiding once you STOP fearing them. There NO tablet in the world that can help you, because you need to CLEAR your mind of fear. If you just take a tablet, it might help with the symptom, but then your mind goes back to the same old track of thinking of " What if this tablet is too weak,?What if I am going to have all these symptoms again? And on and on and on and on..... Your are inflating the whole picture and it's becoming a balloon. You need to learn how to cope with your FEAR. Then the rest will fall into its place. Try to engage your mind with something

    • Posted

      Please avoid Activan at all costs. I was on that for 8 weeks after cardiologist could not find the cause of my classic symptoms of heart failure/heart attack. Getting off that drug was the worst experience of my life as it also overlapped with withdrawal from bisoprolol. Please seek help by other means the answer is not a benzo.

      I have not followed your specific case but after seven months, three cardiologist, every cardiac test there is as well as tests for rare tumors i was diagnosed with and lung function test confirmed adult on set asthma which presented itself as heart issues.

      There has to be another answer and it is not Activan. You will feel like crap after the biso for longer than you expected. But it will go away...dont panic and complicate it with another addictive drug.

    • Edited

      • I have been to 2 cardiologist, had 10 ekgs, 5 chest xrays, 3 chest and lung ct scans, stress test, encho. Been to a neurologist, had mri and 2 ct scans on the head. Had 2 ultasounds of the stomach. Was only prescribed ativan for anxiety but this Beta Blocker withdrawal is so terrible i don't want to take any meds to go through withdrawal again. Currently at the E.R. now because I thought I was having a heart attack or stroke and in so much pain
    • Posted


      I was on beta blocker bisoprolol for about 3 months for tachycardia. To have my ablation, I was told to just come off the biso 5 days prior. I asked if that was okay to just come off and was told it was fine. WELL, it was not fine. I went into terrible withdrawals. Terrible anxiety. Body shaking and jittery, I could hardly walk because of my legs were weak and jittery. Because of all of this, I thought it was anxiety, so my gp prescribed benzo (Clonazepam) and trazodone. Worst thing I could have never done. Wont get into the long story of this, but I was on for about 18 months. I then started to very slowly withdrawal off of these meds that took 9 months, and after |I was complete, I still had terrible withdrawls for 18 months after.

      If only I had realized at the time, this was withdrawals from the biso and not anxiety, I could have not lost over 2 years of my life.

      If I knew then what I know now.

    • Edited

      I wish i had seen this forum before i took it. I'm 39 had SVT on and of for about 12 years ut only recently got quite bad-due to stress.

      3 wks ago i had an svt episode and they put me on these beta blockers. within a few days i was dizzy tired no appetite nearly fainting. no one checked my bp and before beta blockers i was 90/60 but didnt think. never had them before so i just thought it would lower my heart rate.

      cut down to half a 2.5mg then stopped them but now feel even worse, dizzy, no energy and waking in the night with fast heart. been a&e they just do bloods and ecg and say all ok. waiting for cardiol to call about if to take something else. cant believe in 3 wks ive gone from going the gym etc to now cant walk more than 2 mins

      all bobs posts are so helpful.

      do you have any tips for sleeping-which side, how to lie etc.

      also did people also feel heart pounding in head after stopping even when it was not high.

      i hope this passes soon.

    • Posted

      Hello Bob and all,

      I know you're not a doctor but you have a lot of knowledge regarding BB. I'm 27 and have had high blood pressure since 16. One night I had a panic attack and heart fluttering, tight chest etc. Over a month time I developed anxiety because of the symptoms my body was displaying. Symptoms were very similar to BB stopped symptoms though I wasn't on one but have been taking an ACE since 16 with no side effects. Long story short my BP has been around 140s/80-90s for about 3 weeks with anxiety and stress. My doctor recently prescribed a BB for this on top of my ACE. After reading this thread I'm scared of taking it. I would like to get my BP down naturally before experiencing everyone here is going through. I hope you all the best on recovery. Do you think I should try supplements vs this BB for now and give it a couple of months?

    • Posted

      Thank you for sharing your story, I've been on propanolol 20mg 4x a day got almost 2 years. I stopped taking it a month ago because it dulled me out too much, It's making my severe anxiety much worse, heart is racing, and I have so much adrenaline 24/7. it's turning me into someone I'm not, all I want to do is fight right now which is not a good idea. I used to do kickboxing and mma but I'm very well disciplined in the manner of restraining myself. The BB is the only possible cause of all this, my palms and arm pits have been pouring sweat. I'm 31 and have just had my 6th or 7th back surgery so this is frustrating to deal with being in bed and no physical ability to work out or exercise. How long did it take you to return to normal?

    • Posted

      Hello bob,

      i went through exactly the same as you word by word , please help me regarding the breathing problem,how did you manage to get rid of it, i have managed to get rid of dizziness but breathlessness remains, please heelp me...

    • Posted

      Hey, farhan

      I'm not Bob - he seems to no longer be active here, which is a shame, his posts are super reassuring.

      I'm currently going through BB withdrawals for metoprolol, tapered down from 200 mg to 50 all at once, then climbed back up to 75 and now 100 all over the course of a month cus the withdrawals are so bothersome.

      I've dealt with most of it, the dizziness and anxiety is gone most of the time (still get some rare occurences), I get a bit jittery or have a random tremor or twitch, again not as often as it was at the start. I still get some heart flutters and a bump in HR and Blood pressure with movement, but again, it seems to be getting better.

      The breathlessness is the big one for me. It's not all day, but a few times here and there I feel like I missed a breath, or it was too shallow. This can be at rest or when I'm up and about, like when I go from rest to any bit of sudden movement.

      It /feels/ like it may be getting slightly better, especially since I bumped back up to the 75 mg (the bump to 100 hasnt been in effect long enough to notice much difference), but It's for sure my biggest concern.

      How are your breathing problems manifesting since you've been tapering/quit. I'm down to talk to you about what I've been through since I've been dealing with it for a while.

    • Posted

      hi im on 1.25mg of bisoprolol i dont want to be onit anymore only been on it 6weeks as i was having chest pain and fast heart rate and bp of around 145/99 which is high for me. I then found out 2 weeks after taking bisoprolol that i have a low folcate and that can cause palpatalions. any how the doctor said i can just stop taking but i didnt listen and tried to taper off instead by cutting the 1.25 in half as Equal as i could get them, i was getting headaches and literally no energy to do anything and breathlessness/air hunger feeling, my sats also drop for a few seconds sometimes too to about 85ish then back up to around 95-98. i managed to get to 8days of tapering but my heart was racing that much so it felt and chest pain HR around 105-148 that im now back taking the 1.25mg. since reading this forum ive learnt its withdrawal. i also feel like i have anxiety/depression in the withdrawal too, also i know it says you cant half a 1.25 tablet of bisoprolol as no score line so how can i safely lower dose?

    • Posted

      I got over it for several months, but after drinking alcohol around 2 weeks ago, the same side effects have seemingly come back.

      To be fair, I drank quite a bit, but everything in life had pointed to me being completely over everything. I didn't even remember I was having these issues at the start of the year, what is now 5 months ago.

      Hopefully it passes again for me and it has for you. Word of advice if you see this: watch the alcohol intake.

      Good luck.4

    • Posted

      Hello Islybot, I see this is an old post but hopefully you and others will see this.

      I am weaning off my bb after 10 years of taking it, right now I am only taking 1/4 and I have taken only half of the pill during the 10 years.

      Problem is, I am permanently dizzy, lightheaded, sounds disturb me.

      How long did it take for you to feel ok? Thanks for reading me.

    • Posted

      Hi Gladys 38221

      It starts to improve a little after three years of stopping. I took it three years ago for two weeks and I still feel the side effects such as dizziness, trembling, numbness, cold extremities, and loss of energy, but it is much better than before and it improves with time, but unfortunately we need a lot of time.

    • Posted

      Thanks for your reply, wow, you did not take it for long and you still have some effects.

      I will be patient but it is so hard to work like this.

      A good thing is that my heart rate is normal, it's the permanent dizziness that bothers me so much.

    • Posted

      Dizziness is due to a rush of adrenaline, and it is good that your heartbeat is normal. In any case, dizziness or imbalance is something I still suffer from, but it is getting very, very better. I also feel tension in the eyes. The good thing is that I know that it is due to a rush of adrenaline. There is a person with us in the office who took the medication for only two weeks and told me that it has been stopped for five years. He stopped taking it and is still suffering from withdrawal symptoms, but they are very few and very annoying, but the good thing is that we know that it is a matter of time, even if it is difficult, we will return to our most beautiful days.

    • Posted

      Yes, I have been on it for 10 years in comparison to your colleague and she still has symptoms.

      Thank you for taking the time to answer! I hope we all get better and have beautiful days like you said.

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