Compare Atenolol vs. Bisoprolol

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

Tenormin
(atenolol)

Zebeta
(bisoprolol)

Lowers blood pressure and controls heart rate. Tenormin (atenolol) is good for controlling chest pain and treating a heart attack. It has fewer side effects than other beta blockers. You need to take it on an empty stomach and you can't skip doses.Lowers blood pressure. Zebeta (Bisoprolol) is usually given to people who have taken other blood pressure meds unsuccessfully or have recently had significant heart problems.
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Coupons for Atenolol
Best available price for 30 (50mg) tablets of atenolol
Coupons for Bisoprolol
Best available price for 30 (5mg) tablets of bisoprolol
Reviews & ratings
Filter group. All currently selected
Filter group. All currently selected
4.92Atenolol
Reviews for Atenolol
58%
of people (All ages) say Atenolol is worth it
48%
say it works well
16%
say it's a big hassle
457 reviews
Have you used Tenormin (atenolol)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Bisoprolol
67%
-9% worse vs. Atenolol
61%
-13% worse vs. Atenolol
28%
+12% better vs. Atenolol
Have you used Zebeta (bisoprolol)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
AtenololBisoprolol
  • Tiredness 13%
  • Dizziness 7%
  • Low mood disorder 3%
  • Cold arms and legs 7%
  • Fatigue 1%
  • Shortness of breath 2%
  • Light-headedness 3%
  • Leg pain 2%
  • Decreased energy 3%
More Atenolol side effects »

We haven’t found good data for Bisoprolol side effects.

FDA side effect reports for Bisoprolol »
How it works
AtenololBisoprolol
Tenormin (atenolol) is a selective beta blocker that works specifically on the heart by slowing down the heart and making the heart pump better.Zebeta (Bisoprolol) is a selective beta blocker that works specifically on the heart. It lowers blood pressure by slowing down the heart and making it work less to pump.
Type of medication
AtenololBisoprolol
Prescription onlyPrescription only
Available as
AtenololBisoprolol
  • Pill
  • Pill
Used for
AtenololBisoprolol
Risk factors for serious side effects
AtenololBisoprolol
  • Suddenly stopping Tenormin (atenolol)
  • Taking calcium channel blockers
  • Major surgery requiring anesthesia
  • Diabetes
  • Taking clonidine
Detailed Tenormin (atenolol) risks & warnings »
  • Diabetes
  • Coronary artery disease
  • Heart failure
  • Major surgery requiring anesthesia
Detailed Zebeta (bisoprolol) risks & warnings »
Pregnancy

Research studies with real people found harmful effects on unborn babies, but the benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

Upsides and benefits
AtenololBisoprolol
  • A first-choice treatment to prevent chest pain (angina).
  • A first-choice treatment for heart attack recovery.
  • At lower doses, Tenormin (atenolol) has fewer side effects than other beta blockers because it targets the heart and not other parts of the body.
  • Good for protecting the heart and lowering blood pressure if you've had a heart attack.
  • Available in a generic version.
  • Also comes in combination with other medications to lower blood pressure.
Downsides and risks
AtenololBisoprolol
  • You need to take Tenormin (atenolol) on an empty stomach.
  • Taking a beta blocker might make you feel more tired or out of breath during exercise or normal daily routines. This gets better for most people, but it might not go away for others.
  • Not a first-choice treatment for high blood pressure unless you have heart disease. However, your doctor could add it to other medicines you're already if your blood pressure is still too high.
  • You can't miss or skip doses. If you stop Tenormin (atenolol) suddenly, it can cause your blood pressure to go up really quickly, raising your risk of heart attack and stroke.
  • Tenormin (atenolol) can hide symptoms of low blood sugar if you're diabetic.
  • This isn't a first choice medication to lower blood pressure.
  • You can't stop taking it suddenly, or else you're more likely to have a heart attack or other problems with your heart.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
AtenololBisoprolol
  • Lowers bad cholesterol and triglycerides. Raises good cholesterol.
  • Avoid grapefruit and grapefruit juice while taking this medicine.
  • Tell your doctor if you develop sudden muscle pain, fever, or weakness.
  • Tell your doctor if you notice dark urine or yellowing in your eyes or skin.
  • Zebeta (Bisoprolol) can make you feel dizzy the first few days you take it, so be careful driving and quickly standing up until you know how your body reacts to it.
  • Don't stop taking it suddenly without talking to your doctor.
  • If you have diabetes, Zebeta (Bisoprolol) can make it difficult to tell if your blood sugar is low.
  • Can cause headache, fatigue, and make you more likely to get colds or the flu.
Learn more
More about AtenololSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Tenormin (atenolol)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about BisoprololSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Zebeta (bisoprolol)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it