Compare Propranolol vs. Norvasc

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

Inderal
(propranolol)

Norvasc
(amlodipine)

Lowers blood pressure and controls heart rate. Inderal (Propranolol) is good for treating many heart problems and other problems in the body, but it has more side effects than other beta blockers. You can't miss doses.Lowers blood pressure. Norvasc (Amlodipine) works well to lower blood pressure and prevent chest pain. You can't miss doses, and you might get persistent swelling.
Reviews & ratings
Filter group. All currently selected
Filter group. All currently selected
5.39Propranolol
Reviews for Propranolol
66%
of people (All ages) say Propranolol is worth it
62%
say it works well
15%
say it's a big hassle
Have you used Inderal (propranolol)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Reviews for Norvasc
58%
+8% better vs. Propranolol
50%
+12% better vs. Propranolol
15%
Same vs. Propranolol
443 reviews
Have you used Norvasc (amlodipine)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
Side effects
PropranololNorvasc
  • Dizziness 5%
  • Fatigue 2%
  • Constipation 3%
More Propranolol side effects »
  • Swelling due to excess fluid 2%
  • Dizziness 1%
  • Heart pounding or racing sensation 5%
  • Flushing 3%
  • Fatigue 2%
  • Nausea 1%
  • Abdominal pain 2%
  • Drowsiness 2%
More Norvasc side effects »
How it works
PropranololNorvasc
Inderal (Propranolol) is an alpha and beta blocker. It lowers blood pressure by slowing heart rate, relaxing blood vessels, and lowering the body's fight-or-flight response.Norvasc (Amlodipine) is a calcium channel blocker. It lowers blood pressure by slowing your heart rate and relaxing your blood vessels. Your heart gets more oxygen and doesn't have to work as hard to pump, which can relieve chest pain.
Type of medication
PropranololNorvasc
Prescription onlyPrescription only
Available as
PropranololNorvasc
  • Pill
  • Extended release
  • Liquid
  • Pill
Used for
PropranololNorvasc
Risk factors for serious side effects
PropranololNorvasc
  • Suddenly stopping Inderal (Propranolol)
  • Major surgery requiring anesthesia
  • Diabetes
  • Concurrent use of non-dihydropyridine calcium channel blockers, digoxin or clonidine
Detailed Inderal (propranolol) risks & warnings »
  • Age 65 years or older
  • History of heart problems
  • Liver disease
  • History of blood vessel disease
  • History of heart failure
Detailed Norvasc (amlodipine) risks & warnings »
Pregnancy

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.

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.

Interactions
PropranololNorvasc
No interactions related info.
  • Interacts with the cholesterol medicine Simvastatin.
Kidneys and liver
PropranololNorvasc
No kidneys and liver related info.
  • Your body uses your liver to break down Norvasc (Amlodipine) and remove it from your blood. If you have liver disease you may not be able to remove Norvasc (Amlodipine) as quickly from your blood as someone with a healthy liver. You should increase the dose of Norvasc (Amlodipine) slowly and watch closely for how it is working in your body. Increasing the dose slowly will lower your chances of having side effects.
  • Might not be a good choice if you have liver disease.
Pain
PropranololNorvasc
No pain related info.
  • Worsening heart pain or increased risk of heart attack is possible when you first start taking Norvasc (Amlodipine). This can also happen after you increase the dose of Norvasc (Amlodipine). Notify your doctor immediately if you experience any heart pain, radiating jaw pain, crushing chest pain, or persistent racing heartbeat.
Upsides and benefits
PropranololNorvasc
  • A first-choice treatment to prevent chest pain (angina).
  • A first-choice treatment for heart failure, heart attack, heart valve disorders, and abnormal heart rhythm.
  • Also treats and prevents many non-heart problems, such as tremors, anxiety, migraines, and liver disease symptoms.
  • A first-choice blood pressure treatment for many people.
  • Calcium channel blockers work especially well for African Americans to lower blood pressure.
  • Lowers the risk of heart attack and stroke.
  • Prevents heart-related chest pain (angina) if you take it regularly.
  • Each dose lasts longer than other calcium channel blockers, which keeps blood pressure consistent without big ups and downs.
  • Particularly good at lowering systolic blood pressure (the top number), so it's a good option for older people who can commonly get high blood pressure only in the top number.
Downsides and risks
PropranololNorvasc
  • 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.
  • Has more side effects than some beta blockers because it crosses into the brain and central nervous system.
  • 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.
  • Can hide symptoms of low blood sugar if you're diabetic.
  • You can't miss doses. Stopping Propranolol suddenly can cause your blood pressure to go up suddenly, which raises the risk of heart attack and stroke.
  • Calcium channel blockers can cause swelling in your limbs. If this happens for you, it probably won't get better over time, so talk to your doctor about alternatives if it bothers you.
  • Women are more likely to have side effects (especially swelling) from Amlodipine than men.
  • Some people might experience flushing with this medication.
  • You can't miss doses. Stopping Amlodipine suddenly can cause your blood pressure to go up suddenly, which raises the risk of heart attack and stroke.
  • If you have severe heart disease, using Amlodipine might increase your risk of chest pain or heart attack during the time right after starting the medication or raising the dosage.
  • Might not be a good choice if you have liver disease.
Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
PropranololNorvasc
  • 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 insomnia and fatigue.
  • Can hide symptoms of low blood sugar. Be careful if you're diabetic.
  • Don't stop taking this medicine suddenly.
  • 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.
  • Interacts with the cholesterol medicine Simvastatin.
  • Can cause ankle or foot swelling.
  • Can cause gum overgrowth. Ask your dentist to check for this side effect.
Learn more
More about PropranololSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Inderal (propranolol)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it
More about NorvascSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
Have you used Norvasc (amlodipine)?
Worth itNot sureNot worth it