Last Updated on June 3, 2023
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The active ingredient Propranolol is a so-called beta-blockers and has a positive effect on the heart. It can lower blood pressure and normalize heart rhythm. Propranolol is therefore ideal primarily for the treatment of hypertension and various heart diseases. Here you can read everything about the application, effects and side effects of Propranolol.
How Propranolol works
Propranolol belongs to the drug class of beta-blockers (beta-blockers). That means he engages in the vegetative (autonomic) nervous system that controls blood pressure and heart work among others. In both cases, the regulation of certain neurotransmitters (neurotransmitters), including in particular adrenaline takes place. The hormone is produced in the adrenal medulla, can in certain docking sites (beta-adrenergic receptor) binding on the heart, thus giving the signal for an acceleration of the heartbeat. In addition, adrenaline, the bronchi wide and stimulate the metabolism (glycogen and fat loss) and increase.
Propranolol competes with adrenaline to the beta-adrenergic receptor at the heart and displaces the neurotransmitter ultimately. Thus, adrenaline no longer develop his heartbeat rising earth effect – with the result that the heartbeat slows down and blood pressure falls. An important effect of this is that the oxygen consumption of the heart is reduced.
Pharmacokinetics and metabolism Propranolol
Propranolol is taken as a tablet and passes through the intestinal wall into the bloodstream. The active ingredient is degraded in the liver, excretion of degradation products is carried out mainly via the kidneys. Already four to five hours after ingestion is half of the original amount of drug removed from the body.
When is Propranolol used?
The beta blocker Propranolol is an important tool in cardiovascular disease. Application areas in detail are:
- Paroxysmal pain in the chest ()
- prevention of recurrence of myocardial infarction (Reinfarktprophylaxe)
- pathological narrowing of blood vessels in the heart ()
- not organically related (functional) cardiovascular symptoms such as increased heart rate and increased blood pressure (Hyperkinetic heart syndrome)
Propranolol place but also for migraine prophylaxis and as adjunctive therapy with an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism) application. Furthermore, the active ingredient can suppress excessive trembling with unknown cause and simple anxiety (such as stress or anxiety before an exam) provide relief.
How Propranolol is used
Propranolol is usually administered via the digestive tract, so as in tablet form. How often and in what dosage of the drug needs to be taken, will be determined individually by your doctor.
In some cases, the beta-blocker is administered intravenously, therefore injected directly into a vein.
What are the side effects of Propranolol?
Some Propranolol side effects caused by the effect at other receptors of the autonomic nervous system. So there are often dizziness, sweating, insomnia, numbness and cold sensation in the limbs and gastrointestinal complaints. Even a drop in the heart rate is possible.
An existing heart failure (heart failure) or preexisting asthma may continue to deteriorate. The same applies to peripheral circulatory disorders.
What should I watch for while taking Propranolol?
Propranolol should not be taken in the following cases:
- slow heart beat (bradycardia)
- low blood pressure (hypotension)
- heart failure associated with fluid retention in the tissues, and respiratory distress (acute congestive heart failure)
- cardiac arrhythmias (such as sick sinus syndrome)
- metabolic acidification of the blood and the body (metabolic acidosis)
Some drugs may enhance the effects of Propranolol adversely affect on the heart and circulation and may not therefore be taken in the same time. These include:
- so-called calcium antagonists of the Verapamil or Diltiazem type)
- Drugs to control heart rhythm (antiarrhythmics)
- Cardiac glycosides (to treat heart failure and arrhythmias)
- Clonidine (antihypertensives)
- anesthetic (narcotic)
- phenothiazines (used, for example against psychosis)
- certain remedy for depression (MAOIs, tricyclic Anitdepressiva)
If there is a severe kidney or liver failure (insufficiency), the Propranolol dose needs to be adjusted.
The beta-blockers should be used during pregnancy if it is necessary. A monitoring of the fetus or newborn may be required as a result.
An application of Propranolol during lactation is possible.
How to get medicines with Propranolol
drugs with Propranolol are only available on prescription. So they are available by prescription only.
Since when Propranolol is known?
Propranolol was the first representative of a group of medicines Beta blocker. It was developed in the 1960s by Nobel laureate James Whyte Black and later came in 1964 on the market.