Weaning off atenolol

Posted , 25 users are following.

So this may sound crazy but hear me out. I'm a 32 year old black female with high bp which I take lisinopril/hctz for. Well in January I started feeling anxious so my doctor gave me buspirone. Well I took it starting around May because really I was hesitant about taking it, but it made me loopy/dizzy like and I had palpitations so strong I ended up going to another doctor who put me on atenolol 25mg for 10 days and told me to stop the buspirone.  So I stopped taking the buspirone immediately and stopped the atenolol Monday and it's Wednesday and please believe me when I say I have never felt this way in all my life. Like when I walk I feel like I might just faint. And even sitting down I feel so weird. I can't even explain it. I'm jittery and when I ate I felt a little nauseous. Any idea how long this might last? My right eye hurts too. 

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  • Posted

    Hi its so helpful to hear everyone’s experience here. I am 39 and was having some palpitations and heart burn. When I went to the drs. My bp was a little high 130 over 80 or in that range and but my heart rate was 115bpm. She has prescribed to take 12.5mg of atenolol. She wants me to take it until I can see a cardiologist and figure out what’s going on. But I am scared to start taking it. I was thinking just to wait till I see the cardiologist. I am so confused
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    • Posted

      If only I could go back in time to the day they gave me Beta Blockers last Jan, no way would I have touched them, even though I had life threatening Ventricular Tachycardia. For instance, one of the beta blockers they tried gave me a cough, I have been off BBs since April and still have that vomit inducing cough, my lungs still dont feel like they work, last nights oxygen average was 85%, but they find noting wrong with my lungs, but they refuse to believe their beta blockers have damaged my autonomous nervous system so they are never going to cure me, beta blockers have ruined my life. The cardiologist has resorted to the old get out clause of anxiety which means he has given up on me. I score zero on anxiety tests, how does anxiety give you a cough? 
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    • Posted

      Hello fatimab164...130/80 is not high at all. Yes, your heart rate would be considered high-normal here in Canada. Were you nervous while at the Dr.? If so, this certainly can elevate the heart rate. I'm a little surprised the Dr. didn't do a 'wait & see" approach rather than prescribing a beta blocker.

      12.5mg of atenolol isn't a lot, so please don't be worried about that.The Atenolol will help reduce the bp (not that it really needs reducing, but it will also slow the heart.

      By the way....you must not suddenly stop the Atenolol. It must be weaned.

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  • Posted

    I have been on atenolol for 4 years (50mg a day in divided dose) but have lost weight. The my pulse was getting to low (30’s) at night and irregular so my doc has been weaning me off slowly over the last 2 months. 5 days ago we reduced the dosage to 12.5 in the morning and all had been fine for the most part (pulse still getting too low and irregular at night) but today on day 5 the day started out just fine. Resting pulse in upper 60’s, 90-104 when active but this afternoon my pulse decided it wanted to jump to 130. I did deep-breathing because I am familiar with an increase in anxiety with dosage reductions but after an hour resting pulse rate was still 100-110 and moving around sent it skyrocketing. I ended up taking a 6.25 dose an hour and a half after it didn’t come down. Does this sound like rebound tachycardia to everyone? At the slow weaning pace we have been doing I haven’t had to experience it and am not sure if that’s more than likely what it was. The 6.25mg did finally drop my resting pulse back into the low 70’s so I’m guessing that’s what it was. I don’t take atenolol for bp but an accelerated pulse rate which has been resolving with weight loss. I do have a cardio appointment next week so I’m curious to see what he has to say about it. This episode this afternoon was very disturbing and almost scary. My guess is it probably was rebound tachycardia but just looking for some input and experiences. 

    This forum has been a life saver and my GP even follows it. 

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  • Posted

    I was prescribed atenolol for no 140/90. Turns out issue is my thyroid. Hypo. TSH READING 40. this med makes me weepy, depressed, and wanna kill others and myself. There was no way I was weaning just off.ill never take one again.

    Day 2 off no same as before. Chest tired. Slight palpitations. Still better than taking that crap. They know these side effects and don't care.

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    • Posted

      Hi Julie. That medicine is crap and very dangerous but no one seems to care or worn as you pretty much have to become your own advocate but please definitely inform your doctor that you have stopped taking the medication they should at least be aware and have it noted in your medical records

       I’m not sure how long you been taking the medication but I would be very careful stopping any of these type of medications cold turkey I had to go through our extended tapering  process but in the end it really matter that I did it the right way 

      I kept logs weekly and faxed it to my doctor every Friday until the taper of the medication was completed

      I think there are a few minor things I still have issues with because of it but for the most part the worst part is over but I definitely went through pure hell getting off the medication in my opinion it was pure poison but I was taking 

      She did place me on HCTZ 25 mg but I was only using 12.5 I didn’t have any issues with that particular medication  except you really have to be careful you don’t deplete your potassium using it  but I just wanted to do things on my own by changing habits and diet and so forth

      I wish you well. Please be careful since cold turkey stopped the medication and notify your doctor soon as possible

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    • Posted

      I forgot to tell you that something that I also found out I’m very hypothyroid so we think that that had something to do with the blood pressure issues as well
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    • Posted

      Hello Tee19!!!!!  I'm so glad you finished the taper. It was a long haul but in the end, worth it for you to feel better. Some people have a bad time with certain medications. I've been taking Atenolol 50mg/day for about 3 years now..no problems. You did it the right way. Some people would quit cold turkey which is just asking for trouble. One should never ever quit this medication without weaning. Sometimes the pharmacists don't advise patients, but in all honesty, I put that responsibility on the doctors. We can always consult a pharmacist about weaning. After all, they are the experts when it comes to medications. 

      I totally agree with your advice to julie19752018. Certainly, I am not a physician but I'm very medical saavy. I fail to understand just why any doctor would prescribe a beta blocker for someone who had a bp reading of 140/90. Most would simply monitor things for a bit. In Canada, it's quite ok for someone over the age of 60 to have a 140/90 reading, but not higher. 

      You were prescribed HCTZ 25mg..but you're taking just 12.5. This is a diuretic. Of course it helps flush excess salts from the body, & it can lower bp. Yes, diuretic can lower potassium levels., but most doctors will do a routine blood test to monitor that after a little while. No worries, 12.5mg is not a high level. Some bp medications can deplete potassium as well, as can medicines taken for heartburn. 

      I'm glad to know you're doing better. These forums are very helpful. It's good to share our experiences & knowledge with others. 

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  • Posted

    Chris, I'm not a doctor but my doctor told me to take antenolol before going to bed bc during the day I felt really faint. The buspirone might be the one that's making you jittery etc. Its for anxiety and it takes 4-6 weeks to work and you might feel nervous and you might have trouble sleeping. I'd take that in the morning and atenolol at night.

    During the day I'm fine now except that I feel tired and my eyes hurt really bad. Eyedrops don't seem to help. I've been on this drug for 2.5 weeks on a 12.5mg dosage (cut in 1/2) but I hate feeling so tired and the eye issue is driving me crazy. So last night was my last time taking atenolol. I've been reading lots of boards and the scary stories regarding atenolol was enough for me to quit, cold turkey if I end up having withdrawals. I'm hoping tonight goes well without it. I'm my own advocate because if a drug doesn't work for me then I will ask for an alternative. You should never feel pressured to take any drug if it makes you feel lousy. Good luck, hope this helps you.

    D-

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  • Posted

    I'm not a doctor but my doctor told me to take antenolol before going to bed bc during the day I felt really faint. Are you still on lisinopril? The buspirone might be the one that's making you jittery etc. Its for anxiety and it takes 4-6 weeks to work and you might feel nervous and you might have trouble sleeping. I'd take that in the morning and atenolol at night.

    During the day I'm fine now except that I feel tired and my eyes hurt really bad. Eyedrops don't seem to help. I've been on this drug for 2.5 weeks on a 12.5mg dosage (cut in 1/2) but I hate feeling so tired and the eye issue is driving me crazy. So last night was my last time taking atenolol. I've been reading lots of boards and the scary stories regarding atenolol was enough for me to quit, cold turkey if I end up having withdrawals. I'm hoping tonight goes well without it. I'm my own advocate because if a drug doesn't work for me then I will ask for an alternative. You should never feel pressured to take any drug if it makes you feel lousy. Good luck, hope this helps you.

    D-

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    • Posted

      dee91189...I've been taking Atenolol 50mg/day for the past 3 years, & don't have any problems, at least nothing I could blame on the Atenolol. You're taking 12.5mg but you say 'cut in half'. Is the tablet 50mg, but you're cutting it in half??? As you know, Atenolol is a beta blocker which lowers heart rate., & because of that, bp is lowered. I will say one thing thoough, Atenolol is FAR better than that nasty drug Metropolol. Some people say both are beta blockers, which they are, but Atenolol is water soluable, whereas the Metropolol is fat soluable. I got this valuable info from a Pharmacist friend of mine, & because they differ in that way, it can have a different affect on the body. I had one helluva time on Metropolol 3 1/2 yrs ago. Headaches so bad they scared me.When I came off the Metropolol, I was fine. 

      You've been taking the Atenolol for 2.5 weeks...so you shouldn't have much difficulty in weaning off. 

      I agree totally with what you said..."you should never feel pressured to take any ddruge if it makes you feel lousy". Sometimes I think medications can make us feel sicker than the ailment.

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    • Posted

      Hi Mike, I'm new to these forums so I'm not sure how you got my response. I was responding to someone else on this forum and it created 2 responses. My sincere apologies. Glad to hear though that you're having good results from atenolol. Of all the ones I've read about on other boards weren't so lucky. I did well lastnight but not much sleep, my eye is still painful from atenolol though. I still don't want to be on it at all. I appreciate the info on Metropolol just in case my doc suggests something new. That's one of the reasons I got on this forum to become aware of what's appropriate for me. So thanks. Take care now.

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    • Posted

      Hello again dee91189. When following a thread in the forum, we are alerted that someone has commented & this is how I got your response. I do find these forums to be extremely helpful, because it gives us the opportunity to find out how anyone else is doing with meds that are driving us bonkers. 

      People do offer valuable suggestions, & it's a relief knowing that what you(generally speaking) are not alone. 

      I don't know why your eye is painful. Have you had a good optical exam??? 

      I totally agree with your belief that if a medication isn't right for you..you ask for something else. We most certainly do have to be our own advocates when it comes to our health. I'm so appreciative of having a wonderful GP. I did have another doctor when I moved to this city..but it turned out he was a young, cocky-know-it-all, & we bumped heads over me having bad side-effects of the medications he was prescribing. Even after 2 weeks, I was feeling sick all the time, but he insisted that I persist with the medication for at least a month. This went on..& next thing I knew it felt as though it was my fault whatever meds he prescribed wasn't working for me properly; at least somehow he made me feel that way & I'd like to think it wasn't intentional. It got to the point where I was apprehensive on the way to his office, waiting my turn, & in his presence. He'd walk into the examining room, barely acknowledge me..then straight to the computer. I didn't know if he was listening to me half the time. Even when I had badly swollen ankles, he was going to prescribe something even after I'd told him I'd sat on a bus for over 6hrs one-way on a trip with a group. I had to repeat the info to him. Finally I got fed up...& asked if my former Dr. would take me back. He did! I can speak at ease with him, ask questions, even joke with him., ask about medications. All these things I could not do with the younger doctor. To share with you a friend has the younger doctor also. She's 75yrs of age...been a patient for 6 yrs now. It was just over 8 months ago he discovered he'd never done a blood test on her.!!! Also, he has prescribed this/that because she has trouble with bowel movements. She told me there's a label for her difficulty in that people simply have problems that way. He hasn't even suggested she have a colonsocopy!!!!!!!! Mind you, she's quite thick when it comes to medical things, & "doesn't want to know". When I mentioned to her about having a colonoscopy & had the Dr. suggested it, she said..."No, & I'm not going to mention it to him either". Stupid is as stupid does.

      I'm so glad we all have each other here in the forum to help, make suggestions, share our woes. People who don't experience what we do have no idea what we're dealing with. 

      Enjoy your day!!!

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    • Posted

      You're funny! I can relate to the colonoscopy story bc my mom wouldn't have one either. Needed a laugh bc today I'm a little crabby. Not sure if it's bc I didn't take the atenolol lastnight. Also, lots of other people were complaining about eye problems when using atenolol. Still very blurry today but a little less pain so far. You seem to be having the same problems with doctors that I'm having. I've been thru so many I've lost count. Today's doctors don't qualify as doctors in my opinion. At times I am telling them how to treat my symptoms. I do a lot of research and I always research my meds before taking them. You have to do that or doctors will give you meds that conflict with your other meds. My doctors have done that. That's why I say they don't qualify as doctors sometimes. You say sometimes others don't know what we're experiencing and that applies to doctors as well. Ok Mike, its nice chatting with you, take care and have a great day. Later...

      Dee

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  • Posted

    I have lost 4 stone in weight I've been getting symptoms over the last week of walking on a trampoline or drunk feeling all over the place. I'm on 50mg atenolol I've seen my gp today and he has told me to stop taking this medication. Now reading all over Google it says I should be weaned of it not just stop taking them as he as advised. Now the question is do I just stop or go back to the gp?

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    • Posted

      suzanne70725...You must NOT stop cold turkey. Beta blockers must be weaned. How long have you been taking this medication??? I have two friends who are Pharmacists, & both have said that beta blockers must be weaned. 

      If your Dr. told you to stop the medication, start weaning...You can start with 3/4 tablet for about a week, then down the 1/2 tablet for a week, 1/4 tab for a week, etc.etc. This will depend of course how long you've been on the medication. It should be quite easy for you if you've only been taking it for a short period.

      Let us know how you get on...but do NOT stop cold turkey!!!!

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    • Posted

      Hi Mike, my gp has told me to completely stop. I've been on these tablets for a few year's. I even made a point of ringing the surgery back to make sure that I shouldn't be weaned down. But phoned me back and said completely stop taking them. What should I do?

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    • Posted

      suzanne70725...Perhaps you may have missed what I wrote in a previous post. I know two people very well who are Pharmacists. Both have told me (I just asked out of curiosity one time) about the stoppage of beta blockes. I was told that if a person say was on them for a week...it would be ok just to stop. HOWEVER in a case such as yours when you've been on them a few years...you MUST WEAN. If you suddenly stop, you may experience all sorts of heart issues..fast beating..irregular beats, or even heart attack. 

      Are you taking any other meds??? 

      You have to do what you have to do, but if it were me, I'd wean...not stop suddenly. Sorry love, but the choice is yours.

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    • Posted

      Suzanne. You need a new doctor.  He or she gave you dangerous advice look for my thread regarding  Metoprolol and how I tapered off.  You never ever stop these drugs cold turkey. It’s dangerous considering the amount  of time that you spent on them.  I will try to see another doctor immediately or at least go to the ER and speak to the physician it’s just not a smart thing to do any pharmacist will tell you the same and please listen to Mike he provide sound advice on this website 

      When I did my taper  I faxed a paper every week to my doctor showing her my tape reschedule some blood pressure readings and any symptoms I was having kept her in the loop I even extended my taper an additional I believe 3 to 6 weeks and it was still hard once it was out of my system even with a taper but nowhere near as bad had I just stop the medication instantly I’m quite sure I would’ve ended up in dire straits 

      Best wishes ♥️

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    • Posted

      Suzanne. I’m not sure where you live but no offense you have been given some very bad advice by both physician and a pharmacist I’m rather shocked that they would tell you this despite your numbers being stable if in fact they are you have still been taking a beta blocker for 2+ years or however long and it needs to be a taper off this medication 

      Of course proceed how you will but I suspect you’re going to end up in the emergency room following the advice of these two people who clearly haven’t a clue about beta blockers. I’m a Nurse But I always try to look at everything here from a patient point since I am one as well   again do what you must but sadly you’ve been given bad advice by two people that should know better (phycian and pharmacist). I would never return to see either one of them

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    • Posted

      I live in the uk, I've been suffering with the drunkness feeling due to either the tablets or low blood pressure. A few months ago they put me on a blood pressure monitor for 24 hours all normal readings. But due to loosing weight and taking up jogging my resting heart beat as been 49 at the lowest and 56. My blood pressure has never been low until now. So I'm only going off experts advice. So hopefully I won't end up in the emergency room. As I haven't taken the tablet today. My blood pressure has been of normal as of today as I monitor this at home.

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    • Posted

      I wish you the best Suzanne I know that in the UK it can be difficult to navigate through the medical system a dear friend of mine lives in Scotland 

      Just very concerned for you and I wonder if they’re not missing something though symptoms could be something totally different then what would require a beta blocker but as you know there have been published reports where doctors are paid money to push these poisonous drugs it’s really scary and I wish you the best I’m just very concerned for you

      Often times I’m low heart rate is pretty normal for people that do marathon running a running of any kind

       It’s good that your blood pressure numbers are good but that doesn’t mean you won’t feel some Ella fax stopping bees beta blockers but as I said I wish you well and please keep us posted on how you were doing everybody’s body is completely different so what may work for one may not work for another I just know that most people have become very ill stopping this medication instantly 

      Best wishes ♥️♥️♥️

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    • Posted

      Thank for your reply, I was on ramipril all those years ago probably 15 years ago. I also suffer white coat syndrome too. I think my body got used to these tablets after a few year's. This is why my old gp changed it. The next lot of pills I can't remember the name of them gave me Cellulitis. So this was the next pill atenolol 50mg. So yes been on these 2+ years. No way means am I fit but I'm fitter than I was at the beginning of this year. No marathon runner not yet. I'm actually doing a app called couch to 5k. I'm on W8r3 my distance of jogging in 29 minutes is 2.18 of a mile. So no marathon runner more like a 🐌 runner. I've been checking it could take the symptoms up to 6 months to get out of my system. Like cold hands and feet etc... I'm hoping I don't end up in the emergency room. But I shall keep posted of coming of these pills.

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    • Posted

      Hi all.

      Very reassuring to read all your stories.

      I have anxiety/dep. and was put on BP meds in Feb. for high BP.  Changed to 50mg Atenolol in May.  Seemed to make anx/dep worse, so Dr told me to stop taking two weeks ago.  Had  lots of symptoms, racing heart, shakiness, much worsened anxiety etc.  Now two weeks later I am still feeling jittery and down.  I know now that cold turkey is not the best with this drug, and feel it was a particularly bad choice for me considering my anx-dep.  Is what I am feeling two weeks out?  I am playing head games with myself and could use some reassurance!

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    • Posted

      Hi Veronica, so sorry to hear that you are having a tough time with atenolol. I don't recall having any of the symptoms you are having. (Maybe) by taking Atenolol it has intensified your other sypmtoms. I had eye issues for several months but that problem still exists once in awhile now. I know I felt very weak, and at times like I would pass out if I didn't make it to a chair or bed. It made me feel really awful. Once I stopped taking it I only had the very painful eye issues where I couldn't see well and serious dry eye. I thought I was going to lose my eyesight. You should talk to your doctor immediately bc your sypmtoms don't sound normal. Good luck Veronica and I hope your health improves. Sorry that I couldn't be more helpful to you. Take care....

      - Dee

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    • Posted

      I agree, Dee - Atenolol does seem to have intensified my symptoms.  I am on anti-depressants which usually work very well, but on this BB seem to be impaired.  I feel better mentally now, but the physical symptoms persist and set off the old autonomic nervous system and away it goes!   I was hoping someone on here could give a timeframe so I could look forward to normality - want to stop thinking about how I feel every minute.  Such a drag for me as well as my family.  I think I am improving, but it is such a slow process (well, not really - only two weeks ) but feels like forever when you are in it. 

      Thanks for your wishes and good advice.

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    • Posted

      First of all I was put on this tablet for ramipril wasn't working for me. Body got used to it. It also says can treat anxiety atenolol can on the leaflet inside the box. Surely your gp should of put you on something else. Instead of beta blockers. Is that where your from uk? Unless you do suffer from blood pressure? Well my dizziness has settled since coming of these tablets. I've had no symptoms of cold turkey my resting heartbeat has returned to normal 59/60 resting heart beat. So it's all been good coming off atenolol for me... No more low blood pressure, I wonder if I'm classed as non high blood pressure as I don't need anything to control it.? Wish you all the best Veronica.

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    • Posted

      I am in Perth WA. Did have high BP in February when I first went on beta blockers.

      I think Dr changed me to Atenolol because it also has anti-anxiety properties, but as it is a beta blocker it made the anx-dep worse.  Should not have been put on beta blocker.  I am now in a bit of a mess not knowing whether what I am feeling is withdrawal from the Atenolol or if my anx/dep meds are not working.  Don't feel particularly dep, but feel physical anxious symptoms.  Feel shaky, heart beats fast just by moving around. Reading around the net, seems these are symptoms of withdrawal, but I want to know if anybody else has gone through this and how long it lasts.  Makes sitting working very uncomfortable!

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    • Posted

      Hi Veronica. I can’t recall your exact story but I know that if you don’t slowly taper off any of these medications he will become very ill and the anxious feeling and fast heartbeat is all part of it you have to slowly taper off these medications they are horrible medications which side effects  just awful to deal with 
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    • Posted

      Hi Tee.  Cold turkeyed off Atenolol two weeks ago.  Was taking it for a couple of months, but was on beta blockers since Feb.  Still feeling tired, shaky, anxious.  As I have anx/depression as well, it gets complicated - don't know which condition to treat!  Was hoping that once the withdrawal from A resolves, my anti-depressants will do the job of helping me feel more normal.  Seems to be taking a very long time (two weeks) but reading other's experiences, this does not seem to be unusual.  

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