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Understanding Heart-Health Prescriptions: Beta Blockers

Beta Blockers East Patchogue NYWhen you see a heart specialist, you may be prescribed certain medications, such as beta blockers. It is important that you understand your medication thoroughly to ensure you have the right information to make the best possible health decisions. Brookhaven Heart always aims to provide our patients with comprehensive information about all heart-health prescriptions. Here is a basic overview of what beta blockers can do for your heart.

What Is a Beta Blocker?

A beta blocker is also known as a beta-adrenergic blocking agent. These medications reduce blood pressure by blocking the effects of epinephrine. While taking a beta blocker, your heart will beat more slowly and with less force, which reduces overall blood pressure.

What Conditions Are Treated with Beta Blockers?

Beta blockers are used in the treatment of  a wide range of ailments including angina, high blood pressure, heart failure, heart attack, anxiety, overactive thyroid, glaucoma, and even migraines.

What Are the Benefits of Beta Blockers?

Current available evidence suggests that Beta blockers, when used to treat heart failure or heart attack reduces one’s risk of death and future heart attacks. Beta blockers are shown to have additional benefits, aside from the positive effects on the heart. They are also shown to prevent kidneys from excreting calcium into urine. Beta blockers aren’t a first line of treatment for thinning bones but they may be an extra benefit provided by this medication.

Who Shouldn’t Take Beta Blockers?

If you have asthma, caution must be exercised when using beta blockers. If you also have a condition that impacts blood sugar, such as diabetes, you should know that beta blockers may affect the control of blood sugar.

What Are the Side Effects of Beta Blockers?

If you experience the following, you should consult with your doctor:

  • Fatigue
  • Cold hands
  • Headache
  • Digestive issues
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Dizziness
  • Shortness of breath
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Decreased libido
  • Depression

For more information about beta blockers or other heart-health prescriptions, contact Brookhaven Heart at 631-654-3278. Call us to schedule your appointment today.