Lowers blood pressure and controls heart rate. Tenormin (Atenolol) is good for controlling chest pain and treating heart failure and heart attack with fewer side effects than other beta blockers. You have to take it on an empty stomach, and you can't miss 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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› A first-choice treatment to prevent chest pain (angina).
› A first-choice treatment for heart failure and heart attack.
› At lower doses, Atenolol has fewer side effects than most beta blockers because it targets the heart and doesn't cross into the brain and central nervous system.
› 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
› You have to take 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 for some might not go away.
› Not a first-choice treatment for high blood pressure according to the latest guidelines, except if you have heart failure or heart disease. As a second choice, your doctor might add it to medicines you're already taking if your blood pressure is still too high.
› You can't miss doses. Stopping Atenolol suddenly can cause your blood pressure to go up suddenly, which raises the risk of heart attack and stroke.
› 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
› Take it on an empty stomach.
› Can cause dizziness in the first few days.
› Check your blood pressure 1 week after starting this medicine, and tell your doctor if it hasn't improved.
› Can cause fatigue and insomnia.
› Can hide symptoms of low blood sugar. Be careful if you're diabetic.
› Don't stop taking this medicine suddenly.
› 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.