beta-blocker


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beta-blocker

beta-blocker or beta-adrenergic blocking agent (bāˈtə ădˌrənûrˈjĭk), drug that reduces the symptoms connected with hypertension, cardiac arrhythmias, angina pectoris, migraine headaches, and other disorders related to the sympathetic nervous system. Beta-blockers also are sometimes given after heart attacks to stabilize the heartbeat. Within the sympathetic nervous system, beta-adrenergic receptors are located mainly in the heart, lungs, kidneys, and blood vessels. Beta-blockers compete with the nerve-stimulating hormone epinephrine for these receptor sites and thus interfere with the action of epinephrine, lowering blood pressure and heart rate, stopping arrhythmias, and preventing migraine headaches. Because it is also epinephrine that prepares the body for “fight or flight” in stressful or fearful situations, beta-blockers are sometimes used as antianxiety drugs, especially for stage fright and the like. People taking a beta-blocker must avoid caffeine, alcohol, and salty foods, because the interaction of those substances and the drug can raise the heart rate and blood pressure. Propranolol (Inderal) is a commonly used beta-blocker.
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beta-blocker

Medicine any of a class of drugs, such as propranolol, that inhibit the activity of the nerves that are stimulated by adrenaline; they therefore decrease the contraction and speed of the heart: used in the treatment of high blood pressure and angina pectoris
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
References in periodicals archive ?
"Beta-blockers have been shown to improve survival, reduce hospitalizations and improve the strength and size of the heart in patients with systolic heart failure.
In experiments with a different mouse model of pancreatic cancer, the CUMC team demonstrated that treating mice with chemotherapy and nonselective beta-blockers, which are used to treat a variety of conditions, lived significantly longer than mice treated with chemotherapy alone.
APACHE-II scores and maximum HR<100/min were independent variables predicting ICU mortality in multivariate logistic regression analysis whereas usage of beta-blockers was not.
A 2013 stratified subset meta-analysis used data from landmark randomized controlled trials (RCTs) that evaluated beta-blockers vs placebo in patients with systolic heart failure to compare metoprolol succinate (MERIT-HF) vs placebo with bisoprolol (CIBIS-II), carvedilol (COPERNICUS), and nebivolol (SENIORS-SHF) vs placebo (table).
Other beta-blockers have a more general action and block shaking and sweating.
The MAPHY study demonstrated the significantly lower risk for coronary events in patients on metoprolol, a lipophilic beta-blocker, as compared to those on diuretics [31].
We calculated a priori that to observe a 50% increase in effective perioperative beta-blocker therapy in patients prescribed perioperative betablockers from 40% to >60% or a 50% decrease from 40% to <20%, we needed 260 patients in each cohort (type I error 0.05, type II error 0.20).
Using beta-blockers as a second-line therapy in combination with certain anti-hypertensive drugs significantly lowers blood pressure in patients with hypertension, according to a systematic review by Cochrane Researchers.
* contraindications for beta-blocker use (other than history of depression)
A Beta-blockers are used to treat high blood pressure, heart failure and other conditions.