Generic Name: Atenolol

  • What is this medication and its most common uses?

    Tenormin is a medicine known as a beta-blocker, which is used alone or in combination with other medicines to treat high blood pressure. Tenormin is also used to treat chest pain and to lower the risk of death in people who have had a heart attack.

  • What should I know when beginning and continuing on this medication?

    How does this medication work?

    Tenormin works by decreasing your heart rate, and relaxing and widening your blood vessels, allowing your blood to flow through with less resistance. This helps to lower your blood pressure.

    What are the beneficial effects of this medication and when should I begin to have results?

    What: By lowering your blood pressure, Tenormin may lower your risk of a stroke or a heart attack. Tenormin has also been shown to reduce the chance of death after a heart attack.

    When: Tenormin may start lowering your blood pressure within 1 to 2 weeks. Though you may not feel an improvement or change in the way you feel, it is very important to keep taking your medicine as prescribed to keep your condition under control.

    How do I know it is working?

    Check your blood pressure regularly. Your healthcare provider will also check your blood pressure at every visit. Following an appropriate diet and exercise plan will also affect your blood pressure results.

  • What are the possible side effects of this medication?

    The following is not a full list of side effects. Side effects cannot be anticipated. If any develop or change in intensity, tell your healthcare provider as soon as possible. Only your healthcare provider can determine if it is safe for you to continue taking this medication.

    Do not stop taking Tenormin without first talking to your healthcare provider. Stopping Tenormin suddenly may cause severe chest pain, a heart attack, or a life-threatening irregular heartbeat.

    More common side effects may include: tiredness, dizziness, cold hands and feet.

    Less common side effects may include:

    Breathing problems or worsened heart failure with symptoms such as weight gain, increased shortness of breath, or a slow heartbeat.

    Tenormin may hide symptoms of low blood sugar levels if you have diabetes.

    Tenormin may harm your unborn baby if you take it during pregnancy. Tell your healthcare provider if you become pregnant while you are taking Tenormin.

  • Who should not take this medication?

    Do not take Tenormin if you are allergic to it or any of its ingredients.

    Do not take Tenormin if you have certain heart problems (such as heart failure, a slow heartbeat, or your heart skips a beat).

  • What should I tell my healthcare provider before I take the first dose of this medication?

    Tell your healthcare provider about all prescription, over-the-counter, and herbal medications you are taking before beginning treatment with Tenormin. Also, talk to your healthcare provider about your complete medical history, especially if you have lung problems (such as bronchitis or emphysema); problems with blood flow in your feet and legs, pheochromocytoma (tumor of the adrenal gland), diabetes, kidney or thyroid problems, if you are scheduled for surgery, or if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.

    Tell your healthcare provider if you have a history of severe allergic reactions to any allergens, because Tenormin may decrease the effectiveness of epinephrine, a medicine used to treat such reactions.

  • What is the usual dosage?

    The information below is based on the dosage guidelines your healthcare provider uses. Depending on your condition and medical history, your healthcare provider may prescribe a different regimen. Do not change the dosage or stop taking your medication without your healthcare provider's approval.

    High Blood Pressure and Chest Pain

    Adults: The recommended starting dose is 50 milligrams (mg) once a day. Your healthcare provider may increase your dose as needed until the desired effect is achieved.

    After a Heart Attack

    Adults: Your healthcare provider will prescribe the appropriate dose for you based on your condition.

    If you have kidney impairment, your healthcare provider may adjust your dose appropriately.

    It is important that you do not stop taking this medication abruptly. If you need to change or stop taking this medication, it is important that you only do this with the guidance of your healthcare provider.

  • How should I take this medication?

    Take Tenormin exactly as prescribed by your healthcare provider. Do not change your dose or stop taking Tenormin without first talking to your healthcare provider.

  • What should I avoid while taking this medication?

    Do not drive a car, operate machinery, or engage in other tasks that require alertness until you know how Tenormin affects you.

  • What are the possible food and drug interactions associated with this medication?

    If Tenormin is taken with certain other drugs, the effects of either could be increased, decreased, or altered. It is especially important to check with your healthcare provider before combining Tenormin with the following: amiodarone, blood pressure/heart medications known as calcium channel blockers (such as diltiazem or verapamil), clonidine, disopyramide, digoxin, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) (such as ibuprofen or indomethacin), or reserpine.

  • May I receive this medication if I am pregnant or breastfeeding?

    Tenormin can harm your unborn baby if you take it during pregnancy. Tenormin can be found in your breast milk if you take it while breastfeeding. Tell your healthcare provider immediately if you are pregnant, plan to become pregnant, or are breastfeeding.

  • What should I do if I miss a dose of this medication?

    If you miss a dose of Tenormin, take it as soon as you remember. However, if it is almost time for your next dose, skip the one you missed and return to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take two doses at once.

  • How should I store this medication?

    Store at room temperature.

Meet the Pharmacists

I'm Beth Isaac, PharmD. Welcome to PDR Health!

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