Compare Elavil vs. Atenolol

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

Elavil (amitriptyline)

Prescription only

Tenormin (atenolol)

Prescription only
Improves mood.

Elavil (amitriptyline) regulates mood and treats nerve pain, but has more side effects than alternatives.

3.3/ 5 average rating with 134 reviewsforElavil
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.

3.6/ 5 average rating with 457 reviewsforAtenolol
Upsides
  • Elavil (amitriptyline) works well to treat nerve pain and is non-habit forming.
  • 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.
Downsides
  • Elavil (amitriptyline) has more bothersome side effects than other antidepressants.
  • 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.
Used for
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Pill
Price
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Reviews
134 reviews so far
53%
saidit'sworth it
36%
saiditworked well
25%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Elavil (amitriptyline)?

Leave a review
457 reviews so far
58%
saidit'sworth it
48%
saiditworked well
16%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Tenormin (atenolol)?

Leave a review
Side effects
The Elavil (amitriptyline) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
17possible side effects
  • Tiredness
    26%
  • Dizziness
    13%
  • Cold arms and legs
    12%
  • Depression
    12%
  • Fatigue
    6%
  • Shortness of breath
    6%
  • Low blood pressure on movement changes
    4%
  • Slower heartbeat
    3%
  • Leg Pain
    3%
  • Light-headedness
    3%
  • Decreased energy
    3%
  • Vivid dreams
    3%
  • Diarrhea
    3%
  • Nausea
    3%
  • Wheeziness
    3%
  • Feeling off balance
    2%
  • Drowsiness
    2%
See more detailed side effects
Risks and risk factors
  • Suicidal thoughts or behavior
    • Age 24 years or younger
  • Mania
    • History of bipolar disorder
    • At risk for bipolar disorder
  • Heart problems
    • History of cardiovascular disease
  • Dizziness and falls
    • Age 65 years or older
    • Taking medicines to control blood pressure
  • Dehydration
    • Age 65 years or older
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Heart attack or increased chest pain
    • Suddenly stopping Tenormin (atenolol)
  • Heart failure
  • Slowing heart rate
    • Taking calcium channel blockers
  • Increased risks during surgery
    • Major surgery requiring anesthesia
  • Masked symptoms of low blood sugar
    • Diabetes
  • Masked symptoms of overactive thyroid
  • Increased risk of rebound high blood pressure
    • Taking clonidine
See more detailed risks and warnings