What Beta Adrenergic Blockers do?
β-Adrenergic blockers inhibit response to β-adrenergic stimulation, thus decreasing cardiac output. β-Adrenergic blockers block the release of catecholamines, epinephrine, and norepinephrine, thus decreasing the heart rate and BP. β-Adrenergic blockers decrease the workload of the heart and decrease oxygen demands. Used for angina, dysrhythmias, hypertension, migraine headaches, prevention of myocardial infarction, and glaucoma. β-Adrenergic blockers are contraindicated in the client with asthma, bradycardia, heart failure (with exceptions), severe renal or hepatic disease, hyperthyroidism, or brain attack (stroke); carvedilol, metoprolol, and bisoprolol have been approved for use in heart failure once the client has been stabilized by ACE inhibitor and diuretic therapy.
β-Adrenergic blockers should be used with caution in the client with diabetes mellitus because the medication may mask symptoms of hypoglycemia. β-Adrenergic blockers should be used with caution in the client taking antihypertensive medications.
You should Memorize the following table, for better understanding.
Side/adverse effects of Beta Adrenergic Blockers
- Weakness, fatigue
- Nausea, vomiting
- Behavioral or psychotic response
- Monitor vital signs.
- Withhold the medication if the pulse or BP is not within the prescribed parameters.
- Monitor for signs of heart failure or worsening heart failure.
- Assess for respiratory distress and for signs of wheezing and dyspnea.
- Instruct the client to report dizziness, light-headedness, or nasal congestion.
- Instruct the client not to stop the medication because rebound hypertension, rebound tachycardia, or an anginal attack can occur.
- Advise the client taking insulin that the β-adrenergic blocker can mask early signs of hypoglycemia, such as tachycardia and nervousness.
- Instruct the client taking insulin to monitor the blood glucose level.
- Instruct the client in how to take pulse and BP.
- Instruct the client to change positions slowly to prevent orthostatic hypotension.
- Instruct the client to avoid over-the-counter medications, especially cold medications and nasal decongestants.