stopping Carvedilol (Coreg): When will the effects wear off?

Posted by teatime @teatime, Apr 28, 2016

Hi everyone,

I am glad to be a part of this community. Please foregive the long post. I was wondering if anyone has had a hard time while being on and going off Carvedilol (Coreg).

I am an active 45 year old mom of a young child. I have always tried to eat healthily and keep in shape (I do yoga, pilates and, run about 5k 2x per week). My BP has always been pretty good, but since my 40´s it has gone up a bit (heredity factors play a role). My BP and heart rate also “spike” when I get stressed or anxious, but for the most part are pretty level during normal times. I do have anxious moments, but I would not say anxiety has been a major life problem. At my last check (Feb 2016), and after wearing a 24 hour BP monitor, my cardiologist suggested I start Carvedilol 6.25 1x per day (quite a low dose) for the spikes and to keep the heart from getting too excited. I agreed that maybe it was a good idea and started over two months ago. Other than stimulating rapid bowel movements, I did not notice any side effects at first. I would say about three to four weeks into taking the Carvedilol, I began not sleeping well. I also noticed my heart pounding, like a bass drum, slowly and steadily, at times. Then the heart pounding began to wake me up at night (it turns out my HR was down in the high 40s at night). Some nights I even felt my chest muscles vibrate, as if a phone on silence mode was on top of my chest. I started to notice this more and more and then I would have a few normal nights, so I figured I would just talk about this at my next cardio check (booked out in June). I also noticed I was getting more and more anxious. I wasn’t too sure why little things were beginning to bother me. I thought it was hormones, PMS, whatever, and started looking for someone like a therapist to talk to.

The previous week was bad. I woke up from a few nightmares and I started to panic in bed, just woken up from sleep. I had three nights of waking up to panic attacks and body shakes. The experiences made me very nervous. At this point I started looking into the side effects of Carvedilol and I was seeing not only chest pounding, but in rare cases reported effects of nightmares, visual disturbances, tremors, anxiety. I also know one does not simply stop a beta blocker, so we talked about tapering down. I tapered down for four days, and then I got in to see another cardiologist on Monday and he said just stop immediately. The effects are rare, but they have been noted. Going off this medication has been frightening. I feel weak and shaky all the time, and I get sporadic periods of pounding and muscle tremors in my legs, anxiety and fuzzy vision. I frequently get so cold I begin to shake. Yesterday I went back to the clinic for an EKG (normal) and some blood tests (including thyroid) and everything was normal. I am just assuming this is my body reacting and readapting itself after being on beta blockers. It has only been five days, but I am wondering if anyone out there has had similar experiences. How long did it take you to feel normal again? I ran a 5k just two weekends ago and yesterday I could hardly take a walk. Thanks for listening.

My PCP recommended Carvidolol as a good med for heart. I have had asymptomatic AFIB for years and High BP controlled with Losartin and Lasix. But my nightmares on Carvidolol were so bad I had to stop it for good after two tries both ended up in nightmares that almost sent my wife to another bedroom!!

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@gmaesjr that's what I did before I had my by pass the Dr. put me on Coreg I had nightmares the first night I called him and he said to stop it right away which I did as soon as I stopped it they went We are our own advocate listen to your body

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I went from 12.5 mg of Coreg a day x 2 to 6.25 mg per day x2 and then 6.5 per day. I've been off at now 3 days and still get slightly dizzy. Miner Falls just says it could take up to 2 weeks.

Liked by latishabritt

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@dorlando

I went from 12.5 mg of Coreg a day x 2 to 6.25 mg per day x2 and then 6.5 per day. I've been off at now 3 days and still get slightly dizzy. Miner Falls just says it could take up to 2 weeks.

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Miner Falls is correct @dorlando. Getting off Coreg from 12.5mg per day often takes two weeks or a little more. Perhaps you phased down a little too fast. Did you coordinate your withdrawal with your doctor?

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My PCP a Cardiologist wanted me to take Carvidelol because he said it was a good heart med. In a couple of weeks I started having terrible nightmares and feeling horrible trtying to sleep so my doc said lets test it so I stopped that med for a couple of months and no more bad nightmares and my wife moved back in bed with me, Then my Doc said he wanted me to try Carvedilol again and I did and in a week my sleep was disturbed and terrible nightmates etc etc returned. And my spouse left me again! No more carvediliol for me. and she finally came back!

Liked by lioness

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@gamesjr

My PCP a Cardiologist wanted me to take Carvidelol because he said it was a good heart med. In a couple of weeks I started having terrible nightmares and feeling horrible trtying to sleep so my doc said lets test it so I stopped that med for a couple of months and no more bad nightmares and my wife moved back in bed with me, Then my Doc said he wanted me to try Carvedilol again and I did and in a week my sleep was disturbed and terrible nightmates etc etc returned. And my spouse left me again! No more carvediliol for me. and she finally came back!

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@jamesjr sounds like you learned your lesson .lol First time Dr put me on that same thing terrible nightmares .I called cardiologist and told him ,I,m not taking this ,he agreed ,you have to be your own advocate ,you know your body better then anyone

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@gamesjr

My PCP a Cardiologist wanted me to take Carvidelol because he said it was a good heart med. In a couple of weeks I started having terrible nightmares and feeling horrible trtying to sleep so my doc said lets test it so I stopped that med for a couple of months and no more bad nightmares and my wife moved back in bed with me, Then my Doc said he wanted me to try Carvedilol again and I did and in a week my sleep was disturbed and terrible nightmates etc etc returned. And my spouse left me again! No more carvediliol for me. and she finally came back!

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Gene Ames, Jr. @gamesjr

Sounds like your dose was excessive. Better off that med than on it.

Good your wife returned

Liked by lioness

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It's been 4 weeks since I've been off I was taper down to 6.25 per day and then taking off. I'm still going through after 4 weeks what you went through in the first 5 days it's absolutely terrible.

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@dorlando

It's been 4 weeks since I've been off I was taper down to 6.25 per day and then taking off. I'm still going through after 4 weeks what you went through in the first 5 days it's absolutely terrible.

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It took me 2 years to figure out how to wean off. Thanks to this connect chat I found a way and am sure glad I did. That was a year ago and have not looked back except in horror to the days I was enslaved to Carvedilol. The nightmare of having returning migraines when I attempted to wean off quickly were over when I did it slowly.

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Hello. In my effort to understand why I am having such side effects with Carvedilol I have been reading the various posts but have not seen any mentioning leg and joint pain. I am 74 and I had been having fluctuations in my heart, like a fluttering, so went to a heart specialist to get checked out. He had me wear a heart monitor. When results came in he said at one point my heart beat really fast 17 times in a row. He felt I needed a beta blocker to prevent that from getting worse. So I agreed and began with a low dose and finally a 6.25 tabs twice daily. My side effects only started after several months of first 3.15 twice a day then 6.25 twice a day. I am a side sleeper and the pain has become so bad I cannot sleep on my left side. Tylenol helps very little. I had no joint or leg problems before starting on Carvedilol. Now my leg is aching all the time. I had to purchase an elastic knee brace to help with my knee pain through the day. When I discussed these effects with my doctor he more or less said that it had nothing to do with Carvedilol. I told him that before I came to him and got on this drug I had no joint pain in my knee and hip. On top of that I have terrible insomnia making day to day activities harder. Has anyone else had severe joint pain from this drug? I am now cutting pills in half to try to wean myself off this beta blocker. He also had me try Bystolic at one point, but it did not work for me. Now he wants me to try Atenolol. I do not see the point of another beta blocker as apparently my body does not like them. I am a person with several drug allergies. There must be another solution. Thanks for any suggestions.

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@flmonline

Hello. In my effort to understand why I am having such side effects with Carvedilol I have been reading the various posts but have not seen any mentioning leg and joint pain. I am 74 and I had been having fluctuations in my heart, like a fluttering, so went to a heart specialist to get checked out. He had me wear a heart monitor. When results came in he said at one point my heart beat really fast 17 times in a row. He felt I needed a beta blocker to prevent that from getting worse. So I agreed and began with a low dose and finally a 6.25 tabs twice daily. My side effects only started after several months of first 3.15 twice a day then 6.25 twice a day. I am a side sleeper and the pain has become so bad I cannot sleep on my left side. Tylenol helps very little. I had no joint or leg problems before starting on Carvedilol. Now my leg is aching all the time. I had to purchase an elastic knee brace to help with my knee pain through the day. When I discussed these effects with my doctor he more or less said that it had nothing to do with Carvedilol. I told him that before I came to him and got on this drug I had no joint pain in my knee and hip. On top of that I have terrible insomnia making day to day activities harder. Has anyone else had severe joint pain from this drug? I am now cutting pills in half to try to wean myself off this beta blocker. He also had me try Bystolic at one point, but it did not work for me. Now he wants me to try Atenolol. I do not see the point of another beta blocker as apparently my body does not like them. I am a person with several drug allergies. There must be another solution. Thanks for any suggestions.

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Different medications are metabolized by different genes. I am not sure what gene metabolizes Carvedilol but I think it may be the same one which metabolizes a drug I had problems with – Metoprolol. As it turns out, even though everyone has the gene (CYP2D6), I had a particular variant which meant I did not effectively metabolize Metoprolol. The net result was that, instead of being absorbed and processed, it continued to circulate in my blood stream and could build up as more doses were taken. Thus the effects were multiplied. I had to be given a different drug which worked fine. This may not be your problem, but if you have not had a genetic test I would recommend one. I had my own testing done and had to convince my cardiologist and pharmacist that the drug was not appropriate for me. In fact, I am convinced that doctors and pharmacists should insist that genetic test be done to ensure that medicine can be tolerated by patients.

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@jimana

Different medications are metabolized by different genes. I am not sure what gene metabolizes Carvedilol but I think it may be the same one which metabolizes a drug I had problems with – Metoprolol. As it turns out, even though everyone has the gene (CYP2D6), I had a particular variant which meant I did not effectively metabolize Metoprolol. The net result was that, instead of being absorbed and processed, it continued to circulate in my blood stream and could build up as more doses were taken. Thus the effects were multiplied. I had to be given a different drug which worked fine. This may not be your problem, but if you have not had a genetic test I would recommend one. I had my own testing done and had to convince my cardiologist and pharmacist that the drug was not appropriate for me. In fact, I am convinced that doctors and pharmacists should insist that genetic test be done to ensure that medicine can be tolerated by patients.

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Thanks so much @jimana I will consider that. I have thought of switching to a different cardiologist as well. One who is open to other ways to treat irregular heart beat. I am also on new diet and exercising hoping that may help. Appreciate your response.

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@jackie63

I'm a 55 year old post menopause women who was involved in a violent car crash in November 2018. I am fit, 5'9" and roughly 138 pounds. The car was flipped and we were trapped, other than suffering herniated discs, I suffered an apparent heart attack. I was hospitalized for several days for evaluation and further testing which revealed Troponin level over 3.0, ballooning of LV, but blood work and heart catheterization were all normal (no findings). It was determined I suffered a Takotsubo Cardiomyopathy (ballooning and shutting down of the LV). When I was released the doctor put me on Corvedilol (coreg) to keep the heart rested and give it time to recover without a relapse cardio event. I had did not have any terrible side effects from the drug, other than a bit more tired than usual and shortness of breath which I had since the cardiomyopathy. Fast forward 5 months later, I am in pre-op for other surgery related to the crash, and my resting heart rate is now alarmingly low at 37 to 40 BPM. My cardiologist decided it was time to stop the Coreg (cold turkey…not gradually). Today is the 2nd day off the medication, and I woke to an alarming 3 pound weight spike…..thinking perhaps water weight??? (I weigh daily, healthy eating habits, low sodium, no alcohol). Is this normal after stopping this drug? Because this is my heart, I am concerned with water weight gain. My husband says I am overly concerned, but I thought I would not hurt to share the story and get other thoughts. Blood pressure is great at 119/74 this morning, but heart rate still at 41 BPM. I should note that my resting heart rate prior to the accident was always around 50 – 55, but I never had any previous heart issues. However, prior to the accident I was a bit of a workout junkie and my recover rate was always very quick. Any cause for concern?

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Hi i would like to offer what i was always told about water weight. Ive been on diuretics for many years prior to my heart transplant and my drs always said that if my weight jumped 3 lbs or more in a day i was to take an extra dose. Do to my weak heart i was prone to weigh gain from water retention and was on Bumex generic for many years. So in your case o would say a call to the Dr is in order. Coreg i was on that too but never heard it would cause weight gain that sudden. But the 3 lb rule i still live by today i know for me now its usually because i ate out and got way to much sodium. So usually now for me a couple of days after the weight gain it goes back down. I no longer need durietics and diet change helps me.

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@jackie63

I'm a 55 year old post menopause women who was involved in a violent car crash in November 2018. I am fit, 5'9" and roughly 138 pounds. The car was flipped and we were trapped, other than suffering herniated discs, I suffered an apparent heart attack. I was hospitalized for several days for evaluation and further testing which revealed Troponin level over 3.0, ballooning of LV, but blood work and heart catheterization were all normal (no findings). It was determined I suffered a Takotsubo Cardiomyopathy (ballooning and shutting down of the LV). When I was released the doctor put me on Corvedilol (coreg) to keep the heart rested and give it time to recover without a relapse cardio event. I had did not have any terrible side effects from the drug, other than a bit more tired than usual and shortness of breath which I had since the cardiomyopathy. Fast forward 5 months later, I am in pre-op for other surgery related to the crash, and my resting heart rate is now alarmingly low at 37 to 40 BPM. My cardiologist decided it was time to stop the Coreg (cold turkey…not gradually). Today is the 2nd day off the medication, and I woke to an alarming 3 pound weight spike…..thinking perhaps water weight??? (I weigh daily, healthy eating habits, low sodium, no alcohol). Is this normal after stopping this drug? Because this is my heart, I am concerned with water weight gain. My husband says I am overly concerned, but I thought I would not hurt to share the story and get other thoughts. Blood pressure is great at 119/74 this morning, but heart rate still at 41 BPM. I should note that my resting heart rate prior to the accident was always around 50 – 55, but I never had any previous heart issues. However, prior to the accident I was a bit of a workout junkie and my recover rate was always very quick. Any cause for concern?

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Thank you for your reply and sharing information. I have heard about the 3 pound rule, and this is why it alarmed me so. I have been extremely diet conscious for many years prior to the accident, and this whole event has me extremely cautious. My sodium levels are really quite good. That said, most of that 3 pound weight was off this morning, so likely it was water retention. I've been told I have a tremendous amount of fluid build up in my lower back (visible on MRI I guess) which must be associated with the disc herniations. I just worry about my heart now that I have had this event. Although a relapse is possible, my doctor said there are no signs or symptoms of any heart disease and my heart catheterization showed my arteries were clean. My follow up 2 months after the accident showed my EF at a solid 60 and my left ventricle is working again. Maybe I just need to keep an eye on all my vitals and contact doctor with any other sudden changes. Thank you again for your post.

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@jackie63

Thank you for your reply and sharing information. I have heard about the 3 pound rule, and this is why it alarmed me so. I have been extremely diet conscious for many years prior to the accident, and this whole event has me extremely cautious. My sodium levels are really quite good. That said, most of that 3 pound weight was off this morning, so likely it was water retention. I've been told I have a tremendous amount of fluid build up in my lower back (visible on MRI I guess) which must be associated with the disc herniations. I just worry about my heart now that I have had this event. Although a relapse is possible, my doctor said there are no signs or symptoms of any heart disease and my heart catheterization showed my arteries were clean. My follow up 2 months after the accident showed my EF at a solid 60 and my left ventricle is working again. Maybe I just need to keep an eye on all my vitals and contact doctor with any other sudden changes. Thank you again for your post.

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It sounds like you'll doing fine and yes i take my vitials every morning just to watch trends.

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