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Old 06-12-2009, 07:16 AM   #1
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Beta Blockers & Hair Loss

Hello everyone:

Wanted to touch base and see if anyone on the boards has experienced hair loss from beta blockers.

I am presently taking .01 clonidine - 5 x's per day and .25 altenolol - once/day. I have been on the beta blocker about 2 years and just recently I am losing alot of hair when I shower and brush it. It's gotten to the point that I hate to wash my hair because I am getting traumatized by all the hair loss. Along with the hair loss I am having burning scalp. I am having some stress in my life right now because my husband has lung cancer but I don't think it is stress.

Years ago I was on toprol xl and I started losing hair and my Dr. had to take me off of it and then the hair loss stopped. The only thing is it's taken long for the hair loss to start. This time I have been on the altenolol at a small dose for almost two years.

My OBGYN is running bloodwork to check my thyroid. I don't think this is the problem. She said even after being on the beta blocker this long I could still experience hair loss. I have made an appointment with my internist to discuss coming off the beta blocker. I know she will be resistant to this and I am scared of the side effects of trying to do this. I am wondering if there is something they could give me to help this process. Problem is I am so sensitive to drugs and this is why she hates to make changes.

Has anyone had any experience with this I would appreciate your feedback.

 
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Old 06-18-2009, 03:52 PM   #2
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Re: Beta Blockers & Hair Loss

Hi Emeraldeyes,

I was once on beta blockers and personally did not experience hair loss (had just about every other lousy side effect though!)

Regarding BETA BLOCKERS- info from many sources indicate that hair loss is seen in about 1-5% of patients.
Also, depending on your source, CLONIPINE could be your culprit too. Hair loss (alopecia), has been reported in about 2 in 1000 people. Pretty rare but not unheard of.

If nothing else is going on health-wise with you i.e. thyroid function proves to be A-okay, and other drugs and/or "issues" have been ruled out, definitely talk to your doctor about this. My bet is on the atenolol, since it's much more unusual to have hair loss with Clonopine.

Good luck- let us know how things go.
zuzu

Last edited by zuzu8; 06-18-2009 at 03:53 PM.

 
Old 05-31-2010, 01:51 PM   #3
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Re: Beta Blockers & Hair Loss

One of the published side effects of Beta Blockers is hair loss. I have lost nearly 3/4 of my hair--I tried once to get my cardo to change the medication (Bystolic) and he told me that it was better to lose my hair than my life. Well, I'm now at the point that I want to try something else and hope my hair grows back, hopefully it's not too late.
Just research the net and beta blockers side effects and you will now find that it is a cause of hair loss...and other various side effects. I am also having trouble sleeping (another side effect).
Hope this helps. B.

 
Old 06-03-2010, 06:14 AM   #4
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Re: Beta Blockers & Hair Loss

Quote:
Originally Posted by bblonts View Post
One of the published side effects of Beta Blockers is hair loss. I have lost nearly 3/4 of my hair--I tried once to get my cardo to change the medication (Bystolic) and he told me that it was better to lose my hair than my life. Well, I'm now at the point that I want to try something else and hope my hair grows back, hopefully it's not too late.
Just research the net and beta blockers side effects and you will now find that it is a cause of hair loss...and other various side effects. I am also having trouble sleeping (another side effect).
Hope this helps. B.
Not all beta blockers cause hair loss. Kerlone (which is no longer available) does not cause hair loss. Betaxolol is the generic of this drug, though they do not appear to be the same in my opinion. Zebeta, also known as Bisoprolol did not cause hair loss when I took it several years ago. It does cause more fatigue than Bystolic, but less sleep problems. The gold standard of beta blockers for most conditions is Toprol XL. If you have never tried this beta blocker, it may be very effective and may eliminate the side effects you've been experiencing. If you ask your doctor to try this beta blocker, make sureyou he prescribes the brand drug "TOPROL XL" and not the generic.
The generics were mostly all recalled by the FDA last year, for being dangerous and less effective. ConsumerLabs and PeoplesPharmacy have reported numerous problems with the generic.

 
Old 06-03-2010, 07:37 PM   #5
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Re: Beta Blockers & Hair Loss

25mg of atenolol is a small dose - there shouldnt be much difficulty in stopping this, just go to 12.5mg for a few days, then stop, under doctors advice and supervision of course.

You could change to another class of BP med, for example an ACE inhobitor, if indeed the beta blocker is causing your hair to fall.

 
Old 06-04-2010, 10:01 AM   #6
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Re: Beta Blockers & Hair Loss

I have tried Toprol XL and could hardly move from the bed to the bathroom. I would rather take my chances on nothing than live like that. My doc gave it to me when I first went on bp meds. It was the brand name. I have switched to CCB because I have Rauynards with beta blockers. CCB dilates the blood vessels and I hope this will help with that problem. But I also read the side effects on ccbs and it includes hair loss as well. I will see what happens.
In the course of my reading whet all bp meds do, beta blockers are mainly for bp only and do not provide any other benifit. Ace inhibitors are most likely the most benificial for what they do but my pain doctor suggested ccb.
Not everyone will experience hair loss but some of us that are sensitive to the meds are at a greater risk. CCBs are said to keep from having any further build up on the arteries--hopefully this is true.
I'm having a Nuclear stress test done on the 17th. I don't know how valuable that test is. I had it done once when in the hospital and it didn't help anything at that time. I don't have typical heart symptoms. First I get exhausted and then maybe un a slight fever--that's it. The last time I had a stent was when I went in for a low grade fever and the heart doc told me he wanted to do angioplasty the next morning--I was upset that he even thought of it, but I had to have another stent place in an artery that he had stented before--it was 90% closed. But fever was the only symptom.
When I had my heart attack, the only symptom was exhaustion! that was it. I came home from work and spent the weekend in bed and finally, Monday morning I had my daughter drag me to the doc and he told me to go straight to the ER. I came home to get a few things and went to bed for several hours--I was just too tired to move. I could hardly believe I had had a heart attack. But I guess that is true for women--some just don't have the chest pain or pain down the arm. I can see why so many women die from heart related problems since they don't have the same symptoms as most men.
Thank you for all your suggestions.

 
Old 07-01-2010, 05:29 PM   #7
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Re: Beta Blockers & Hair Loss

Quote:
Originally Posted by bblonts View Post
One of the published side effects of Beta Blockers is hair loss. I have lost nearly 3/4 of my hair--I tried once to get my cardo to change the medication (Bystolic) and he told me that it was better to lose my hair than my life.
I am having the same problem, hair loss. I only have less than 1/3 of my hair left on my head. I am on Metoprolol 25 mg daily. And I've been on this medication for over 10 years. I mentioned this hair loss problem to my doctor but he didn't think the medication could cause hair loss. May be next appointment with him I should insist on him changing the medication.

Last edited by mod-anon; 07-01-2010 at 06:40 PM. Reason: editing quote

 
Old 07-02-2010, 10:55 AM   #8
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Re: Beta Blockers & Hair Loss

I switched to a calcium channel blocker and my RP got much better. But I also found that CCBs can cause hair loss and I think I would rather try ACE as there are fewer side effects. I tried the brand of beta blockers you suggested and I was so tired I could hardly get from my bed to the bathroom. No thank you. It is like being a living dead and that is just not living. But thank you for the information. Hopefully, the doc will change to and Ace inhibitor as it helps with other conditions other than just high blood pressure.

 
Old 07-02-2010, 11:05 AM   #9
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Re: Beta Blockers & Hair Loss

I feel for you as I know what you are going through. My cardiologist did not change my meds but my GP did. I have Raynauds as well which is when my hands and feet turn color when I get cold. On the beta blocker, Bystolic, the symptoms gradually got worse and I began to lose circulation when I took a hot shower. My pain doctor said that I should ask to change to a CCB--I did two months ago. It has definatelly help with my circulation but recently when I researched CCBs, it also can cause hair loss. After researching ACE inhibitors, I think that would be the best medication for me and hopefully my doc will change me to that on a low dose. Beta blockers can and do cause hair loss in some patients...I am one of them. It starts off small and gets worse (for me) the longer I am on the drug. My Raynaurds also got much worse on the beta blocker...much much worse. It was to the point that I was getting worried that if it continues, I would have 0 circulation in my hands and feet which is very dangerous and can lead to amputation if the problem is not resolved. As I understand it, ACE inhibitors also open the blood vessels and allow better circulation. There are now ARBs that are also ace inhibitors but do not have the side effect of a cough according to the reseach that I've done. My best advice to you is to research the Internet and check out what the medication does and it's side effects. Since I have some sclerosis from back injury, ace is also used to control this problem. Best of luck to you and let me know how you do.

 
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