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This medication is a beta-blocker used to treat high blood pressure, irregular heartbeats, shaking (tremors), and other conditions. It is used after a heart attack to improve the chance of survival. It is also used to prevent migraine headaches and chest pain (angina). Lowering high blood pressure helps prevent strokes, heart attacks, and kidney problems. Preventing chest pain can help improve your ability to exercise.
This drug works by blocking the action of certain natural chemicals in your body (such as epinephrine) that affect the heart and blood vessels. This effect reduces heart rate, blood pressure, and strain on the heart.
Take this medication by mouth, usually 2 to 4 times daily or as directed by your doctor. Take this medication before meals (and at bedtime if taking 4 times daily). Measure the liquid medication with a medication-measuring spoon or device. Do not use a household spoon because you may not get the correct dose.
The dosage is based on your medical condition and response to treatment.
Use this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, take it at the same time each day. It is important to continue taking this medication even if you feel well.
This medication is used to help prevent chest pain or migraines. It should not be used to treat chest pain or migraines when they occur. Use other medications (e.g., nitroglycerin tablets placed under the tongue for chest pain, sumatriptan for migraines) to relieve sudden attacks as directed by your doctor. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for details.
If you also take certain drugs to lower your cholesterol (bile acid-binding resins such as cholestyramine or colestipol), take propranolol at least 1 hour before or at least 4 hours after these medications.
For the treatment of high blood pressure, it may take 1 to 2 weeks before you get the full benefit of this drug.
Tell your doctor if your condition worsens (e.g., your routine blood pressure readings increase, your chest pain or migraines occur more often).
Do not stop using this drug without first consulting your doctor. Your condition may become worse when the drug is suddenly stopped, especially if you have chest pain (angina) or heart disease (e.g., coronary artery disease, ischemic heart disease, high blood pressure). If your doctor decides you should no longer use this drug, you must gradually decrease your dose according to your doctor's instructions.
When gradually stopping this medication, it is recommended that you temporarily limit physical activity to decrease strain on the heart. Seek immediate medical attention if you develop: worsening chest pain, tightness/pressure in the chest, chest pain spreading to the jaw/neck/arm, unusual sweating, trouble breathing, or fast/irregular heartbeat.
Before taking propranolol, tell your doctor or pharmacist if you are allergic to it; or if you have had a serious reaction to other beta-blockers (e.g., metoprolol); or if you have any other allergies.
Dizziness, lightheadedness, or tiredness may occur as your body adjusts to the medication. Nausea/vomiting, stomach pain, vision changes, trouble sleeping, and unusual dreams may also occur. If any of these effects persist or worsen, tell your doctor or pharmacist promptly. This drug may reduce blood flow to your hands and feet, causing them to feel cold. Smoking may worsen this effect. Dress warmly and avoid tobacco use.
How Does Propranolol Make You Feel?
Propranolol blocks the physical effects of anxiety, meaning you won’t experience an increased heart rate, sweating and shakiness when you feel nervous. By blocking the physical symptoms of anxiety, propranolol can help you feel calmer, less nervous and more composed.
How Long Does it Take for Propranolol to Work?
It takes 30-60 minutes for the effects of propranolol to become noticeable. Most people who take propranolol to treat performance anxiety use the medication about one hour before any stress-inducing events.
Is it Okay to Take Propranolol With Food?
Propranolol can be taken with food or on an empty stomach. Food does not seem to have a significant effect on the body’s absorption of propranolol, meaning you shouldn’t notice any difference in effectiveness if you take this medication after a meal.
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