Description and Brand Names

Drug information provided by: Micromedex

US Brand Name

  1. Tenormin

Descriptions


Atenolol is used alone or together with other medicines (such as hydrochlorothiazide) to treat high blood pressure (hypertension). High blood pressure adds to the workload of the heart and arteries. If it continues for a long time, the heart and arteries may not function properly. This can damage the blood vessels of the brain, heart, and kidneys, resulting in a stroke, heart failure, or kidney failure. High blood pressure may also increase the risk of heart attacks. These problems may be less likely to occur if blood pressure is controlled .

Atenolol is also used to help prevent chest pain and to decrease the severity of heart attacks .

This medicine is a beta-blocker. It works by affecting the response to nerve impulses in certain parts of the body, like the heart. As a result, the heart beats slower and decreases the blood pressure. When the blood pressure is lowered, the amount of blood and oxygen is increased to the heart .

This medicine is available only with your doctor's prescription .

This product is available in the following dosage forms:

  • Tablet

Before Using

In deciding to use a medicine, the risks of taking the medicine must be weighed against the good it will do. This is a decision you and your doctor will make. For this medicine, the following should be considered:

Allergies

Tell your doctor if you have ever had any unusual or allergic reaction to this medicine or any other medicines. Also tell your health care professional if you have any other types of allergies, such as to foods, dyes, preservatives, or animals. For non-prescription products, read the label or package ingredients carefully.

Pediatric

Appropriate studies have not been performed on the relationship of age to the effects of atenolol in the pediatric population. Safety and efficacy have not been established .

Geriatric

Appropriate studies performed to date have not demonstrated geriatrics-specific problems that would limit the usefulness of atenolol in the elderly. However, elderly patients are more likely to have age-related liver, kidney, or heart problems, which may require caution and an adjustment of dosage in patients receiving atenolol .

Pregnancy

Information about this atenolol-oral-route
Pregnancy Category Explanation
All Trimesters D Studies in pregnant women have demonstrated a risk to the fetus. However, the benefits of therapy in a life threatening situation or a serious disease, may outweigh the potential risk.

Breastfeeding

There are no adequate studies in women for determining infant risk when using this medication during breastfeeding. Weigh the potential benefits against the potential risks before taking this medication while breastfeeding.

Drug Interactions

Although certain medicines should not be used together at all, in other cases two different medicines may be used together even if an interaction might occur. In these cases, your doctor may want to change the dose, or other precautions may be necessary. When you are taking this medicine, it is especially important that your healthcare professional know if you are taking any of the medicines listed below. The following interactions have been selected on the basis of their potential significance and are not necessarily all-inclusive.

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines is usually not recommended, but may be required in some cases. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Albuterol
  • Amiodarone
  • Arformoterol
  • Bambuterol
  • Clenbuterol
  • Clonidine
  • Colterol
  • Crizotinib
  • Diltiazem
  • Dronedarone
  • Fenoldopam
  • Fenoterol
  • Fingolimod
  • Formoterol
  • Hexoprenaline
  • Indacaterol
  • Isoetharine
  • Levalbuterol
  • Metaproterenol
  • Pirbuterol
  • Procaterol
  • Reproterol
  • Ritodrine
  • Salmeterol
  • Terbutaline
  • Tretoquinol
  • Tulobuterol
  • Verapamil
  • Vilanterol

Using this medicine with any of the following medicines may cause an increased risk of certain side effects, but using both drugs may be the best treatment for you. If both medicines are prescribed together, your doctor may change the dose or how often you use one or both of the medicines.

  • Acarbose
  • Aceclofenac
  • Acemetacin
  • Acetohexamide
  • Acetyldigoxin
  • Alfuzosin
  • Amlodipine
  • Amtolmetin Guacil
  • Arbutamine
  • Aspirin
  • Benfluorex
  • Bromfenac
  • Bufexamac
  • Bunazosin
  • Celecoxib
  • Chlorpropamide
  • Choline Salicylate
  • Clonixin
  • Deslanoside
  • Dexibuprofen
  • Dexketoprofen
  • Diclofenac
  • Diflunisal
  • Digitoxin
  • Digoxin
  • Dipyrone
  • Disopyramide
  • Doxazosin
  • Etodolac
  • Etofenamate
  • Etoricoxib
  • Felbinac
  • Felodipine
  • Fenoprofen
  • Fepradinol
  • Feprazone
  • Floctafenine
  • Flufenamic Acid
  • Flurbiprofen
  • Gliclazide
  • Glimepiride
  • Glipizide
  • Gliquidone
  • Glyburide
  • Guar Gum
  • Ibuprofen
  • Ibuprofen Lysine
  • Indomethacin
  • Insulin
  • Insulin Aspart, Recombinant
  • Insulin Glulisine
  • Insulin Lispro, Recombinant
  • Ketoprofen
  • Ketorolac
  • Lacidipine
  • Lercanidipine
  • Lornoxicam
  • Loxoprofen
  • Lumiracoxib
  • Manidipine
  • Meclofenamate
  • Mefenamic Acid
  • Meloxicam
  • Metformin
  • Metildigoxin
  • Mibefradil
  • Miglitol
  • Morniflumate
  • Moxisylyte
  • Nabumetone
  • Naproxen
  • Nepafenac
  • Nicardipine
  • Nifedipine
  • Niflumic Acid
  • Nilvadipine
  • Nimesulide
  • Nimodipine
  • Nisoldipine
  • Nitrendipine
  • Oxaprozin
  • Oxyphenbutazone
  • Parecoxib
  • Phenoxybenzamine
  • Phentolamine
  • Phenylbutazone
  • Piketoprofen
  • Piroxicam
  • Pranidipine
  • Pranoprofen
  • Prazosin
  • Proglumetacin
  • Propyphenazone
  • Proquazone
  • Quinidine
  • Repaglinide
  • Rofecoxib
  • Salicylic Acid
  • Salsalate
  • Sodium Salicylate
  • St John's Wort
  • Sulindac
  • Tamsulosin
  • Tenoxicam
  • Terazosin
  • Tiaprofenic Acid
  • Tolazamide
  • Tolbutamide
  • Tolfenamic Acid
  • Tolmetin
  • Trimazosin
  • Troglitazone
  • Urapidil
  • Valdecoxib

Other Interactions

Certain medicines should not be used at or around the time of eating food or eating certain types of food since interactions may occur. Using alcohol or tobacco with certain medicines may also cause interactions to occur. Discuss with your healthcare professional the use of your medicine with food, alcohol, or tobacco.

Other Medical Problems

The presence of other medical problems may affect the use of this medicine. Make sure you tell your doctor if you have any other medical problems, especially:

  • Bradycardia (slow heartbeat) or
  • Heart block or
  • Heart failure or
  • Pheochromocytoma (adrenal gland tumor), untreated—Should not use in patients with these conditions .
  • Diabetes or
  • Hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid) or
  • Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar)—May cover up some of the signs and symptoms of these diseases, such as a fast heartbeat .
  • Kidney disease—Use with caution. The effects may be increased because of slower removal from the body .
  • Lung disease (e.g., asthma, bronchitis, emphysema)—May cause difficulty with breathing in patients with this condition .

Proper Use

In addition to the use of this medicine, treatment for your high blood pressure may include weight control and changes in the types of foods you eat, especially foods high in sodium. Your doctor will tell you which of these are most important for you. You should check with your doctor before changing your diet .

Many patients who have high blood pressure will not notice any signs of the problem. In fact, many may feel normal. It is very important that you take your medicine exactly as directed and that you keep your appointments with your doctor even if you feel well .

Remember that this medicine will not cure your high blood pressure, but it does help control it. You must continue to take it as directed if you expect to lower your blood pressure and keep it down. You may have to take high blood pressure medicine for the rest of your life. If high blood pressure is not treated, it can cause serious problems such as heart failure, blood vessel disease, stroke, or kidney disease .

Do not interrupt or stop taking this medicine without first checking with your doctor. Your doctor may want you to gradually reduce the amount you are taking before stopping it completely. Some conditions may become worse when the medicine is stopped suddenly, which can be dangerous .

Dosing

The dose of this medicine will be different for different patients. Follow your doctor's orders or the directions on the label. The following information includes only the average doses of this medicine. If your dose is different, do not change it unless your doctor tells you to do so.

The amount of medicine that you take depends on the strength of the medicine. Also, the number of doses you take each day, the time allowed between doses, and the length of time you take the medicine depend on the medical problem for which you are using the medicine.

  • For oral dosage form (tablets):
    • For acute heart attack:
      • Adults—50 milligrams (mg) ten minutes after the last intravenous (IV) dose followed by another 50 mg twelve hours later. Then, 100 mg once a day or 50 mg two times a day for another 6 to 9 days or until discharge from the hospital.
      • Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor .
    • For chest pain:
      • Adults—At first, 50 milligrams (mg) once a day. Your doctor may increase your dose if needed.
      • Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor .
    • For high blood pressure:
      • Adults—At first, 50 milligrams (mg) once a day. Your doctor may increase your dose if needed.
      • Children—Use and dose must be determined by your doctor .

Missed Dose

If you miss a dose of this medicine, take it as soon as possible. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not double doses.

Storage

Store the medicine in a closed container at room temperature, away from heat, moisture, and direct light. Keep from freezing.

Keep out of the reach of children.

Do not keep outdated medicine or medicine no longer needed.

Ask your healthcare professional how you should dispose of any medicine you do not use.

Precautions

It is very important that your doctor check your progress at regular visits to make sure this medicine is working properly and to check for unwanted effects .

Using this medicine while you are pregnant can harm your unborn baby. Use an effective form of birth control to keep from getting pregnant. If you think you have become pregnant while using the medicine, tell your doctor right away .

Make sure any doctor or dentist who treats you knows that you are using this medicine. You may need to stop using this medicine several days before having surgery .

Atenolol may cause heart failure in some patients. Check with your doctor right away if you are having chest pain or discomfort; dilated neck veins; extreme fatigue; irregular breathing; an irregular heartbeat; shortness of breath; swelling of the face, fingers, feet, or lower legs; weight gain; or wheezing .

This medicine may cause changes in your blood sugar levels. Also, this medicine may cover up signs of low blood sugar, such as a rapid pulse rate. Check with your doctor if you have these problems or if you notice a change in the results of your blood or urine sugar tests .

This medicine may cause some people to become less alert than they are normally. If this side effect occurs, do not drive, use machines, or do anything else that could be dangerous if you are not alert while taking atenolol .

Side Effects

Along with its needed effects, a medicine may cause some unwanted effects. Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention.

Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur:

More common

  1. Blurred vision
  2. cold hands or feet
  3. confusion
  4. difficult or labored breathing
  5. dizziness, faintness, or lightheadedness when getting up from a lying or sitting position suddenly
  6. shortness of breath
  7. sweating
  8. tightness in chest
  9. unusual tiredness or weakness
  10. wheezing

Less common

  1. Anxiety
  2. chest pain or discomfort
  3. chills
  4. cold sweats
  5. cough
  6. dizziness or lightheadedness
  7. fainting
  8. fast heartbeat
  9. leg pain
  10. noisy breathing
  11. slow or irregular heartbeat
  12. sudden shortness of breath or troubled breathing

Rare

  1. Bloody urine
  2. decreased frequency or amount of urine
  3. increased blood pressure
  4. increased thirst
  5. loss of appetite
  6. lower back or side pain
  7. nausea
  8. swelling of face, fingers, or lower legs
  9. vomiting
  10. weight gain

Incidence not determined

  1. Black, tarry stools
  2. bleeding gums
  3. blood in urine or stools
  4. blurred or loss of vision
  5. bone or joint pain
  6. disturbed color perception
  7. double vision
  8. feeling that others are watching you or controlling your behavior
  9. feeling that others can hear your thoughts
  10. feeling, seeing, or hearing things that are not there
  11. fever
  12. halos around lights
  13. night blindness
  14. overbright appearance of lights
  15. paleness or cold feeling in fingertips and toes
  16. pinpoint red or purple spots on skin
  17. severe mood or mental changes
  18. skin irritation or rash, including rash that looks like psoriasis
  19. skin rash, hives, or itching
  20. sore throat
  21. swollen or painful glands
  22. tingling or pain in fingers or toes when exposed to cold
  23. tunnel vision
  24. unusual behavior
  25. unusual bleeding or bruising

Get emergency help immediately if any of the following symptoms of overdose occur:

Symptoms of overdose

  1. Anxiety
  2. coma
  3. cool, pale skin
  4. depression
  5. dilated neck veins
  6. extreme fatigue
  7. headache
  8. increased hunger
  9. irregular breathing
  10. nervousness
  11. nightmares
  12. seizures
  13. shakiness
  14. slurred speech
  15. unusual drowsiness, dullness, tiredness, weakness, or feeling of sluggishness

Some side effects may occur that usually do not need medical attention. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about them:

More common

  1. Discouragement
  2. feeling sad or empty
  3. irritability
  4. lack of appetite
  5. loss of interest or pleasure
  6. trouble concentrating
  7. trouble sleeping

Less common

  1. Diarrhea
  2. dream activity
  3. feeling of constant movement of self or surroundings
  4. sensation of spinning
  5. sleepiness

Incidence not determined

  1. Decreased interest in sexual intercourse
  2. dry mouth
  3. inability to have or keep an erection
  4. loss in sexual ability, desire, drive, or performance
  5. loss of hair, temporary
  6. pain of penis on erection

Other side effects not listed may also occur in some patients. If you notice any other effects, check with your healthcare professional.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.