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  • Significant Pulse Decrease with Atenolol

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    Old 03-02-2011, 03:48 PM   #31
    atengnr
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    Re: Significant Pulse Decrease with Atenolol

    I wouldnt worry so much about the pulse. This is not really a side effect, but rather it is reflective of how the med works - it is blocking beta receptors on cardiac tissue leading to blockade of the signal they receive from the sympathetic nervous system- which acts to increase heart rate and force of contraction.

     
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    Old 03-02-2011, 03:50 PM   #32
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    Re: Significant Pulse Decrease with Atenolol

    you're right. as long as it isn't affecting my exercise endurance - which it hasn't - I'm fine with it. hopefully my body can adjust and get the average from 53 up to the low 60s, but if not then oh well. if the cardiologist shows no concern then I'll be completely relieved.

     
    Old 03-03-2011, 10:18 AM   #33
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    Re: Significant Pulse Decrease with Atenolol

    Not trying to draw attention to something that isnt there, but you may want to keep an eye out for changes in exercise capacity over time. There may be more of a change after youve been on beta blockers for awhile (youve only been on them a few weeks, right?). Anyways, if youre not exercising near max capacity, I wouldnt think that youd notice much...

    Write back down the road a bit and let us know how your exercise performance is....Id be interested to know.

     
    Old 03-03-2011, 04:50 PM   #34
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    Re: Significant Pulse Decrease with Atenolol

    I decided I'm going to start easing off this stuff... will take 12.5mg the next few days and then go off it.

    I'm not going to live with a low pulse and inability to burn fat. I did rigorous exercise and my pulse didn't go above 120. I can't have an inability to burn fat. in that case I would just gain weight and be even more prone to high blood pressure. it's great that some people can work out on this with endurance, but what's the point of exercise if you can't burn fat? I feel atenolol will do damage to my heart in the long-term. family is prone to heart attacks and having my pulse at 45 every day is certainly not helping the cause, especially when it was used to 80 for 21 years. one week on this medicine is enough.

    I'm certain I gained 5-10lbs since taking this despite eating extremely healthy. that's 5lbs in a week! I gained about an inch in my waist. this is nonsense, and so is atenolol. how is a product like this still on the shelves?

    maybe I'll give HTCZ another go. maybe its bad reactions were a result of the lisinopril. does HCTZ cause weight gain? I CANNOT have a med messing with my weight. it's too dangerous as is.

    any more suggestions on bp meds that work and do not have weight gain as a side effect?

     
    Old 03-03-2011, 05:10 PM   #35
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    Re: Significant Pulse Decrease with Atenolol

    Well, if youre able to exercise similar to before, I dont see why youd have an issue burning fat during exercise. Its just a matter of how much energy you expend exercising, no?

    Your max HR is capped lower, but that becomes an issue at near maximal exercise.

    Yes, I haave read several studies showing weight gain from beta blockers. Others will have variable responses, but I would guess that I carry an extra 5lbs from beta blockers, but not much more than that.

    You were saying that you liked how you felt on beta blockers, no?

     
    Old 03-03-2011, 10:05 PM   #36
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    Re: Significant Pulse Decrease with Atenolol

    I read a lot of stuff about fat burning zone and whatnot, and I just feel heavier the past week for whatever reason. also, if you have a lower pulse, you don't metabolize food as well and do not burn as much fat from the daily routine. my endurance is fine, but I feel my heart isn't getting the greatest workout even for vigorous exercise. I remember my heart really beating quickly after workouts before atenolol.

    I'm not going to just go off it cold turkey... I know about the dangers of that. I'm going to cut down the dosage every few days though. by the time I see a cardiologist a week from now I'll still be on it, but on a very small dose so if he chooses to remove me from atenolol, he will.

    I feel once I tell him my pulse is regularly 50 with the med he'll recommend something else, probably one of the things you (atengnr) recommended I should take before committing to atenolol.

    we'll so how it goes. I appreciate the concern and will keep updates going.

     
    Old 03-04-2011, 06:06 AM   #37
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    Re: Significant Pulse Decrease with Atenolol

    Well, as you can tell from my posts, I dont have a very positive opinion of beta blockers either, so I agree with you. I think that there are many other drugs to rule out first before choosing beta blockers (for hypertension).

    Best of luck in your search...

     
    Old 03-04-2011, 01:35 PM   #38
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    Re: Significant Pulse Decrease with Atenolol

    thanks.

    will easing off this be a lot easier than some since I've only been taking it for a week and am 21? I doubt the withdrawal symptoms should be too severe apart from the occasional BP spike. I'll severely limit my sodium intake for the next week regardless.

     
    Old 03-04-2011, 02:11 PM   #39
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    Re: Significant Pulse Decrease with Atenolol

    Mike,

    B1 selective beta blockers such as atenolol don't cause weight gain. They are also cardioprotective and don't cause heart attacks, they help prevent them. I think you are getting a bit ahead of yourself and may be obsessed with weight gain among other things...I really do wish you luck finding a good med. Please just keep in mind that we all tend to get a little neurotic here, that's why we are on these boards to begin with, myself included. You may just have to relax a bit and you will find that many of these meds will work for you...or alternatively worry yourself that none of them will or that they are all wrong.

     
    Old 03-06-2011, 11:59 AM   #40
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    Re: Significant Pulse Decrease with Atenolol

    soflsun,

    my obsession with weight coincides with my recent obsession with blood pressure, understandably prompted by that 190/110 hospital trip a few weeks ago. weight gain = increased blood pressure, so counter-productivity from a medication designed to keep my blood pressure DOWN is no good at all. also, at age 21, I cannot deal with such rapid weight gain. pair this with stress from college and work and it's very daunting. as someone who is young and lives an active lifestyle, I will not take atenolol if it is going to give me the metabolism and pulse of a 70-year-old.

    I wish there was more conclusive evidence on what you're saying (that it doesn't cause weight gain or difficulty to lose weight), but it's just alarming that I read posts by many people claiming to have gained 20-40lbs because of atenolol despite working out hard and eating right.

    Sheldon G. Sheps, M.D. on the Mayo Clinic site said "weight gain can occur as a side effect of some beta blockers, especially the older ones, such as atenolol (Tenormin) and metoprolol (Lopressor, Toprol-XL)"

    here are some examples from this own board where respectable members have reported weight gain or impossibility to lose weight:

    http://www.healthboards.com/boards/archive/index.php/t-452373.html
    "prior to the atenolol, I had lost 30 pounds in six months on Weight Watchers. And, even though I have followed the same eating plan since then, I haven't been able to lose anything more since being on atenolol. I have even started exercising aerobically for an hour 3x per week and cannot lose any weight on this drug. I thought it was just a plateau or maybe I needed to be more strict on the diet, but nothing helps."

    here is a very lengthy discussion: http://www.healthboards.com/boards/showthread.php?t=290189

    http://www.healthboards.com/boards/archive/index.php/t-448981.html
    "I also ganined weight from several beta-blockers: atenolol, nadolol, prorpranolol (Inderal regular not time release.)"

    a Google search can bring up TONS of experiences from people who either can't lose weight or have gained weight on atenolol. while it would be lazy and easy to dismiss the gain as a reflection of lifestyle and/or diet, I tend to believe that many of these people are eating healthy and exercising right but still cannot lose weight or gain it. there are simply too many weight gain experiences on this drug for me to dismiss it. and I can't find any scientific research opposing their views.

    my reasoning for this is that it is a scientific fact that an abnormally low pulse attributes to a slowed-down metabolism. more importantly, when your body cannot reach a certain pulse plateau, you are unable to burn fat. hence the purpose of workouts. sure, your workouts will expend energy, but these workouts will now just make you tired. it won't burn the actual FAT - the reason most people work out. no wonder people get depressed on atenolol.

    Last edited by mikevm; 03-06-2011 at 12:00 PM.

     
    Old 03-06-2011, 12:31 PM   #41
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    Re: Significant Pulse Decrease with Atenolol

    Mike,

    There are B3 receptors in fat cells. Non selective beta blockers, such as the original ones and Coreg, which is a newer 3rd generation can blunt fat loss. If you are bringing in a lot of oxygen during your workouts despite the lower heart rate, it is still aerobic and burning fat most likely. The target zones are not concrete numbers, they are guidelines that help people get working out hard enough to burn fat. On a beta blocker you would not need as high of a heart rate.

    In any case, if you formulate your opinions from everyone online, you are doomed. People doing extremely well (and atenolol is the most widely prescribed beta blocker) don't go online to report great success usually.

    Also, a weight gain of 5 lbs. In a week does not even make sense if the drug did have the effect you believe. The bottom line still remains...you have been on three (3) drugs now, all of which are no good after extensive research. I just don't want to see you go down that path...

    Last edited by soflsun; 03-06-2011 at 12:33 PM.

     
    Old 03-07-2011, 02:52 PM   #42
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    Re: Significant Pulse Decrease with Atenolol

    even all this aside, it seems to be no longer positively affecting my blood pressure.

    whereas atenolol would previously bring it down to 110/65, it's now routinely around 137/85. this is no different to when I started this med in the first place.

    I'm certainly not upping the dose either.

    moving onto the sixth medication...

    Last edited by mikevm; 03-07-2011 at 02:53 PM.

     
    Old 03-07-2011, 03:27 PM   #43
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    Re: Significant Pulse Decrease with Atenolol

    Also, consider the magnitude of the weight gain that you might see. I read a few studies that showed the weight gain is only on the order of 5 lbs. Folks will chyme in with their personal stories, but those may not be reflective of the most common outcome.

     
    Old 03-07-2011, 04:00 PM   #44
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    Re: Significant Pulse Decrease with Atenolol

    that is true. I can deal with the 5lb gain, just as long as I can actually have the capability to lose it afterward.

    now actually, the weight gain isn't the main reason I'm switching off atenolol. it's a variety of these things:
    1. my blood pressure is hardly different from when I first started taking it a few weeks ago, despite the atenolol initially bringing it down very low (sometimes too low). while it would go down all the way to 105/65 a few weeks ago, I routinely get somewhere around 140/80 now despite not having changed the dose.
    2. I notice tingling at the end of my fingers and feet... my limbs have a tendency to fall asleep easier. this is surely attributed to a lower pulse. almost like my body telling me something is wrong.
    3. my face is RED and PUFFY... very odd. my eyes also have dark circles under them. this is not attributed to stress or lack of sleep.
    4. I get out of breath when using my legs for certain uphill exercise. climbing stairs is about 10x harder than before. maybe it would be better if my pulse actually reacted to physical activity.
    5. not a huge deal (certainly something i could live with if it was the only side effect)... but very vivid dreams that disturb my sleep cycle and make me groggy.

    I'm sorry, but there HAS to be a better alternative out there for me than atenolol. I don't have any heart issues to speak of when not on this medication (my pulse is consistently 75 off of it and I never have heartbeat irregularities), but I keep feeling my heart is under-working itself.

    it certainly doesn't help when my average resting pulse seems to dwindle with each passing day. around 55 a week ago... 52.. 50... now the resting rate was 44 today at its lowest. no sane medical professional will tell you that's healthy. you don't have to own a PHD to know that your body is not supposed to operate on a pulse that low unless you're an athlete on the level of Lance Armstrong or Michael Phelps.

    I just want a medication that will make my blood pressure AND pulse normal. hopefully my cardiologist can solve that on Friday.

    I will begin easing off atenolol very slowly, using my pill cutter to decrease the amount very slightly every day or so while monitoring my BP and pulse.

    thanks for the ongoing support. it's been much appreciated! soflsun, I'm glad atenolol works for you, but I personally can't live with it! feeling like I'm half-dead every near with a near-undetectable pulse is not worth the hassle of having my BP lowered by 5 points. if it was actually consistent at keeping my BP low then maybe it would be a possibility. but with minimal BP lowering and a dramatic drop in pulse, this med is not worth it for me.

     
    Old 03-07-2011, 04:17 PM   #45
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    Re: Significant Pulse Decrease with Atenolol

    my pulse is 43 currently... I'm afraid to even go down to the gym

    EDIT: just ran 3 miles in 24 minutes. yet my pulse is only 95! I thought this would help raising my pulse, but I guess not. it will probably go down to 43 again within the hour.

    I wish this med didn't have so many side effects and actually worked on my BP.

    the only positive thing it does is make my cardio endurance a lot better. I felt I could still go far past the 3 miles... just didn't want to push it while lowering the atenolol dose, though.

    before atenolol, my pulse would be in the appropriate 140-150 range after doing 3 miles/24 minutes. I felt like the workout did a lot more, to say the least.

    maybe lowering it to 12.5mg will lower my BP and raise my pulse. that would be awesome.

    Last edited by mikevm; 03-07-2011 at 05:18 PM.

     
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