Has anyone tried to come off beta blockers?

catherinetOctober 5, 2006

Hi all,

I was put on Toprol, a beta blocker, about 5 years ago. I was going through perimenopause, and I swear it really made my BP go up. For a long time, it was a life-saver. It brought down my BP, my heartrate, it calmed me down so I didn't have panic attacks, and it helped my episodes of hypoglycemia.

But I think it has caused me alot of fatigue, memory/thinking problems, and I can't quit eating.

My doc knows that I'm trying to slowly come down on it. I'm famous for having rebound problems when I come off meds, so I usually have to bite the bullet, and hang in there, until the rebound stuff goes away.

Instead of cutting my pill down, I'm actually "shaving" it with an emory board, so I can do this very slowly.

But I'm only 4 days into this decrease, and I'm very anxious, and my hypoglycemia is back. Actually........it's not the hypoglycemia that's back, but the symptoms. Beta blockers tend to mask the symptoms....which for me, was great.

Anyhow......this isn't going to be easy. But I was curious if any of the rest of you had been on a beta blocker for several years and came off? What was your experience? Thanks.

P.S. I have NO idea why this happened, but the last time I tried to come down on it, my IBS went absolutely crazy. Maybe I just have too many beta receptors in too many places!?!

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Beta Blockers have horrific side effects. Getting off of them is a excellent idea. Going off of any medication that you have been taking over a long period of time should be done very very slowely. It needs to be done over a period of 6- 8 weeks. It should be done under the supervision of your doctor though not absolutely necessary. What was the specific reason that he or she put you on them in the first place?? Blood pressure can be lowered naturally and there are many natural products that you can take for anxiety.

    Bookmark   October 6, 2006 at 8:28AM
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Robin - what kind of side effects? I know someone who has been on Toprol for the last 3 years, and I'm curious.

    Bookmark   October 6, 2006 at 10:13AM
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In the middle of perimenopause, something happened.......I don't know what.......but my BP went crazy, as did my heartrate. I was also having tons of migraines, and developed panic attacks. My GERD acted up, and I spent 7 months sleeping upright in a chair, because I had so much upper chest and neck pressure.
I saw a cardiologist, and he put me on the Toprol, much to my chagrin. I had so much fatigue from my fibromyalgia, that I didn't want any more. He talked me into going on it, and I have to say it was like a miracle drug for me. It helped ALL my problems. My sympathetic system was on overdrive, and it really calmed me down. It even got rid of all my migraines! I didn't have any more panic attacks at the doctor and dentist's.
Well, I'm well in menopause now, and my BP has been stable for a number of years. I've been very fatigued and have gained weight, plus my brain just doesn't work well.
I had read that lots of people can't tolerate beta blockers because of the fatigue and memory problems.......so I decided to slowly come down on it.
We'll see. I sure would like to think better and have more energy. But if my migraines and panic attacks come back, and my BP and HR go up, I'll go back on it. I know it takes awhile to get used to being off a med that you've been on a long time.......so I need to be patient.

    Bookmark   October 6, 2006 at 7:27PM
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To name a few side effects. There is an increased risk of congestive heart failure. There is a 30% increased risk for diabetes 1 as well as diabetes 2. All prescription drugs have side effects. Taken long enough these side effects cause new problems for which you will need to take yet additional drugs. Beta blockers are primarily taken for high blood pressure. There are other natural ways to lower blood pressure that are better than the beta blockers. As far as your lack of energy you need to take a B Complex Vitamin daily. Only take it in a capsule form and only as a complex. Avoid any vitamin that contains magnesium stearate or steric acid which can be found under " other ingredients." They kill off the T cells and compromise the immune system. This will boost your energy. Is your blood pressure normal at this time? Good luck to you.

    Bookmark   October 6, 2006 at 7:55PM
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I'm finding it hard to believe about the diabetes. I've heard the much older beta blockers might affect CHF.......but the only thing about the newer ones that have anything to do with blood sugar, are that they can mask the symptoms of hypoglycemia........which was a wonderful side-effect for me.
Now that I'm coming down on it, I'm back to feeling hypoglycemic.
It's hard to believe that coming down just a few milligrams is affecting me so much. I feel like crap......shakey, nervous, my IBS is worse, etc., etc. My husband says "just go back on it." But I've tried to explain its like "withdrawal" from something like heroine.
Just because a person has symptoms when coming off a drug, it doesn't mean they should go back on it. Sometimes our bodies have become so used to something, even if it's full of bad side-effects, it takes awhile for it to adjust to life without it.

I have always been supersensitive to medications. I have fibromyalgia, and I think alot of us have that problem. That's why I am always very hesitant to start any new med.......because I know that it will be hell coming off of it.
And on top of feeling like crap coming down on this med, I feel "abnormal" in some way, because it's affecting me so much. In my next life, I hope to be normal!
My husband thinks that what I'm feeling now means that I really need the medicine. But I truly believe that the medicine has made me need it.....and I need to bite the bullet for awhile.
Of course, if my symptoms never subside, and my BP creeps back up, I would consider going back on it. Most importantly, I need to lose some weight. But I think this beta blocker has made me gain weight. I'm sort of stuck between a rock and another rock.

    Bookmark   October 8, 2006 at 10:27AM
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You are right. One of the side effects of some medicines is what is called a rebound effect. The symptoms come back because you have gone off of the medication. This will go away if you stick with it. If your blood pressure starts to go back up I can tell you how to bring it back down with a natural herbal tea. That is right a tea that works better than any blood pressure lowering drug that you will ever take and it only costs pennies a day. Too many doctors are prescribing blood pressure lowering drugs for people who don't need it. Would you care to tell me what your normal pressure is when you are off of the meds.
Here is a web site that should be very informative. Mercola.com
He is a medical doctor who practices alternative medicine. You can type in your disease or your meds and you will get his alternative prospective. It was on his web site that he mentioned diabetes and beta blockers. Look for yourself. there are also effective alternatives for your IBS. Stick with it and get off of those meds. Feel better.

    Bookmark   October 9, 2006 at 10:25PM
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