Weaning off Metoprolol

Posted by kenny48 @kenny48, May 11, 2018

Hi,
I've been taking both flecainide and metoprolol now for eight years, as a prophylactic for Afib. I recently moved to North Carolina and have a new Cardiologist. Have had a lot of PVC's this past two months, and had to wear a heart monitor for an entire month. He said that although I had a lot of PVC's I didn't have even one PAC! He also noted that my BPM was low in the low fifties most of the time. He asked why I was taking metropolol. I told him that the only thing my previous doctor had said was " it makes the flecainide, work better". He suggested I stop taking the metoprolol to see how I do without it. Unfortunately I read a lot of information on the internet. I read that it can be very dangerous to stop taking it. I take 25 mg metoprolol succinate, split in half. Once in the morning with my flecainide, and then again in the evening for a second dose. He wants me to take half in the morning and skip the evening dose for two days, then stop entirely. Has anyone else stopped taking this drug in a similar manner? I'm worried that the cut off is too soon.

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@sue225

All I know is that my NSVT was picked up on a 48hr holter monitor, (which is an ECG). I also have non-serious atrial tachycardia. Anyway, I've bern on it since late 2016 and would not want to go off.

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I agree. I'm on 350mg of Metoprolol Succinate (200 in the morning, 150 mg in the evening), my resting heart rate on good days is finally getting down to the upper 60s. Beta Blockers are generally well tolerated, effective, and comparatively safe. I'm glad to hear of your success. We're fortunate to live in a time in history where these medications are available.

Best regards.

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@oldertoo

@joma7862 I, too, am trying to wean off Toprol XL. I have been taking 12.5 mg for at least 13 years. Today is the first day where I halved the 12.5 and my blood pressure is rising. My doctor wants me to do this for two weeks then stop. I am thinking this medicine has caused my hair to thin a lot. I am also on Cozaar which has had several voluntary recalls due to a carcinogen contamination. I'm not sure what I am going to switch to. After all, most generic forms are manufactured overseas where there's no safety regulations enforced.

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@joma7862 You asked how my tapering off 12.5 mg of Toprol XL was going, so here's the scoop. In my prior message I mentioned I was trying two different things: 1. coming off the Toprol and 2. switching from Cozaar to another ARB. Just as I was ready to stop the Toprol altogether, my doctor switched me to Edarbi (ARB) and asked me to stop the Cozaar. She then said "go back on the 12.5 mg of Toprol" while you are getting use to the Edarbi. So, I am into Day 3 of weaning off the Toprol and I am having terrible insomnia, anxiety and panic attacks. No doubt, some of this is attributed to starting a new drug (albeit in the same class as Cozaar) alongside tapering the the Toprol. Nevertheless, I am miserable.

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Hi all,

I recently had my first a-fib scare, was alone traveling for work, and i woke up feeling like I was running a marathon, visited my PCP and he did and EKG and confirmed AFIB. Said I should go to ER as precaution, by the time I drove myself there..I had converted back to NSR, and they monitored me for an hour and sent me home with a bottle of metaprolol 25mg x2 a day.

I’ve been taking it now for about a week and a half or so solid. Now that I’m back at work, I’m finding that it’s causing me to remain fatigued and tired all the time, and I work on call 24/7. I’ve been hitting the gym at the hotel every day now and I feel fantastic while working out. Yet as soon as I sit down, the overwhelming fatigue sets in. I also feel it’s giving me a bout of insomnia as well.

I have to cut my dosing in half, and wean a few days…then half it again..

What are your recommendations? I have consulted PCP and he didn’t object.

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@sbfd1287

Hi all,

I recently had my first a-fib scare, was alone traveling for work, and i woke up feeling like I was running a marathon, visited my PCP and he did and EKG and confirmed AFIB. Said I should go to ER as precaution, by the time I drove myself there..I had converted back to NSR, and they monitored me for an hour and sent me home with a bottle of metaprolol 25mg x2 a day.

I’ve been taking it now for about a week and a half or so solid. Now that I’m back at work, I’m finding that it’s causing me to remain fatigued and tired all the time, and I work on call 24/7. I’ve been hitting the gym at the hotel every day now and I feel fantastic while working out. Yet as soon as I sit down, the overwhelming fatigue sets in. I also feel it’s giving me a bout of insomnia as well.

I have to cut my dosing in half, and wean a few days…then half it again..

What are your recommendations? I have consulted PCP and he didn’t object.

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When I first started taking betablockers for a non-sustained ventricular tachycardia, the medication would make me extremely sleepy and sometimes brought my pulse down below 50 and lowered my blood pressure too much. It is 2 and 1/2 years later and the metoprolol no longer has that effect. It took about four months for the side effects to go away.

Liked by Soliloquized

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@sue225

When I first started taking betablockers for a non-sustained ventricular tachycardia, the medication would make me extremely sleepy and sometimes brought my pulse down below 50 and lowered my blood pressure too much. It is 2 and 1/2 years later and the metoprolol no longer has that effect. It took about four months for the side effects to go away.

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That’s good to know. I started on a Beta Blocker for Supra Ventricular Tachycardia & stopped after about a week because of fatigue. The SVT only happened when I went for run, so my solution was to stop running (I do a lot of walking now). That was 2 years ago. Recently decided to go for ablation so I can run again. Just had Echogram (sp) & 14 day Halter and next is consultant to see if I am a candidate for ablation.

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I was determined to stay on the beta blockers. In addition to the scary ventricular tachycardia, I also have atrial tachycardia and supraventricular. Since being on the meds, all my followup holter monitors have been normal and I'm still on a low dose. I've read that sometimes with ablation you get rid of one type of arrythmia and develop another. Ablation scares me.
So unless my condition changed and/or the benefits outweighed the risks, I couldnt do it.

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I have been on metoprolol tartrate for quite a few years. I have what they call "burning mouth syndrome" for at least 6 years and have read that metoprolol is one of the blood pressure medications that can cause this. I can' t convince my cardiologist, but want to taper off for a few weeks to see if this is the culprit. I have a-fib and on Eliquis for this. The metoprolol is to keep my heart rate at an acceptable rate. I would like to hear from anyone who has had this burning mouth side efftect and if the metoprolol was the cause. Thanks for any help.

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@mc4777

Thank you Both for listing your side effects. I am on Metropolol
50 mg now cut to 25 mg 1 day then stopped cold turkey as per my Dr. and I was having at least 3/4 of the symptoms you both mentioned. Plus low heart rate, crazy palpitations. It’s only been 2 days so at least I have hope these symptoms will slowly subside. Dr. Switched me over to calan sr 120 mg for my blood presure and to help with palpitations. Plus a small dose of Xanax as needed for anxiety.
I noticed
terrible gas,
loose stools,
nightmares,
Dizziness turning over in my sleep caused the room spinning,
Losing weight
Low heart rate 45
Bp low 100/65
Dry mouth
Difficult breathing
Fatigue
Heart palpitations
Anxiety
Depression
hair loss
I am so glad to hear that these will subside slowly.
Thank you for giving me insight and hope. This is terrifying to go through alone!
They should add all these symptoms to the RX pamphlet!

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The one side effect that does not seem to go away is hair loss! I shed like a golden retriever. Not all beta-blockers do this. I am reluctant after 2 1/2 years to switch. I tried others and I got intolerable g.i. side effects. On a low dose of 12.5mg twice a day and it controls my arrythmia. Metoprolol has also made my IBS-C worse. It doesnt just slow my heart rate….it slows my motility to a grinding halt. The fatigue and sleepiness disappeared in the early months of taking it as well as the low bp and heart rate. I do feel lucky that I have not yet had to increase the dosage and that my heart is behaving well so far.

Liked by maddox

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Good news, discovered a coffee 99.9% caffeine free, called Mommee Coffee. Sells online for pregnant Moms. Surely is nice to have a little coffee again that doesn't seem to bother my afib. Yeah!!

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@sue225

I am taking metoprolol to control my arrythmia (non-sustained ventricular tachycardia). It is a conventional betablocker. Bisoprolol and atenolol are used as well. They do have an effect on the heart rhythm.

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Bisoprolol was the first medication the cardiologist prescribed for the non-sustained ventricular tachycardia. It worked extremely well. However, it caused intolerable g.i. symptoms. ( and when it comes to my lemon of a digestive tract, I can put up with a lot). I must have tried 5 different medications , e.g atenolol( & a calcium channel blocker which made me worse). Finally I picked the betablocker that I felt I could live with and that was metoprolol. After about 10 difficult months, my body seemed to accept the metoprolol (at least to an acceptable level) and my follow-up holter monitor results have all been good.

Liked by Soliloquized

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@sue225

The one side effect that does not seem to go away is hair loss! I shed like a golden retriever. Not all beta-blockers do this. I am reluctant after 2 1/2 years to switch. I tried others and I got intolerable g.i. side effects. On a low dose of 12.5mg twice a day and it controls my arrythmia. Metoprolol has also made my IBS-C worse. It doesnt just slow my heart rate….it slows my motility to a grinding halt. The fatigue and sleepiness disappeared in the early months of taking it as well as the low bp and heart rate. I do feel lucky that I have not yet had to increase the dosage and that my heart is behaving well so far.

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@sue225 I have been on 12.5 mg of Toprol for over 13 years. I have lost so much hair. My doctor says she doesn't believe such a low dosage is the culprit. I don't know. In any event, I am coming off of it. I have reduced to 6.25 mg for 12 days now. My anxiety is out the roof. My dermatologist, on the other hand, says my hair loss could be the Toprol. I'm afraid at this point, after so many years, I won't have any new growth. I'll just be happy if the shedding stops.

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@oldertoo

@sue225 I have been on 12.5 mg of Toprol for over 13 years. I have lost so much hair. My doctor says she doesn't believe such a low dosage is the culprit. I don't know. In any event, I am coming off of it. I have reduced to 6.25 mg for 12 days now. My anxiety is out the roof. My dermatologist, on the other hand, says my hair loss could be the Toprol. I'm afraid at this point, after so many years, I won't have any new growth. I'll just be happy if the shedding stops.

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I have read that hair growth happens once the metoprolol is stopped so be hopeful! Not all the beta-blockers cause hairloss. I would have preferred to stay on a low dose of bisoprolol (taken once a day and it was the cardiologist's first choice) but it gave me g.i. side effects. So far, I have not mentioned it to my doctor because I'm not prepared to start switching meds again. I have to admit, this shedding is unnerving. Maybe will mention it on my six month followup visit. It is good to hear from someone else with the same side effect. Will you need to go on a new medication? Thanks for sharing.

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i was on Metoprolol 25mg 3 times daily plus clonidine .03 mg 3 times daily for high blood pressure. You all know how miserable I felt I was on this for 5 years. I read on internet the two drugs interact and cause the result to be lessesend I asked Doctor Nope was the answer keep taking both. My BP was out of control 230/115 in her office. She just sent me home. I decided I would treat myself. I slowly 1/2 a pill at a time over 2 weeks taking myself off. My BP started coming down. It is now 125/82 at the age of 73 I am satisfied. Quit my Doctor and have an appointment with a new one next month. BY the way I as at the pharmacy if the drugs counteracted Pharm said that is impossible. I told him what I did He still swore impossible Hell I am living proof

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OMG….your BP was 230/115. You were at the point of a stroke! I am not surprised that the doctor didn't know about the drug interaction but the pharmacist was not aware of this?!! This proves a point. ALWAYS be on top of your medical condition. Do your own research. Never put any drug into your body that you have not researched. Ask questions. Read more. And above all, when possible, make serious lifestyle changes rather than turning to drugs! They have serious side effects as you discovered. Lifestyle: dieting, reducing salt intake (BP), getting exercise, drinking plenty of water, eating 5 – 10 servings of fruit and veggies per day, avoiding foods and meds that are stimulants that cause or worsen arrhythmias (coke, decongestants, liquorice, coffee, tea, alcohol, sugary foods etc..) cutting out any sugary foods that can cause diabetes etc… One can cure diabetes 2 by diet alone. There is no need for so many meds that are just making us all SO SICK! Tootierollpie (which I hope you don't eat!), I'm glad you figured out your own problem and cured yourself. Bravo!

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@sue225

Bisoprolol was the first medication the cardiologist prescribed for the non-sustained ventricular tachycardia. It worked extremely well. However, it caused intolerable g.i. symptoms. ( and when it comes to my lemon of a digestive tract, I can put up with a lot). I must have tried 5 different medications , e.g atenolol( & a calcium channel blocker which made me worse). Finally I picked the betablocker that I felt I could live with and that was metoprolol. After about 10 difficult months, my body seemed to accept the metoprolol (at least to an acceptable level) and my follow-up holter monitor results have all been good.

Jump to this post

Hi Sue225! At age 46, I was on beta blockers for the worst case of Afib my cardiologist had ever seen. I was on Sotalol max dose of 320 mg per day for almost 2 years and felt horrible!. The doctor tried to have me lower what he considered to be a dangerous dose but my heart would flip out. I was like an old lady, with no energy and psychologically feeling like I was fragile and handicapped. I would ask my husband to do everything because I was too 'sick'.
One day I decided to do some research and read that lowered estrogen can cause arrhythmias. I asked my doctor for estrogen and my Afib stopped completely; slowly (important). But the gynaecologist said not to take estrogen unopposed; that is without progesterone because it can cause cancer in reproductive organs. So I took progesterone and the Afib returned but not so bad. So I was back on a lower dose of beta blockers with the estrogen and progesterone.
I read some more and learned that regular exercise (not walking but aerobic) could stabilize the heart. I joined a gym and went every day but Sunday and inside a month I was off the beta blockers, estrogen and progesterone. My cardiologist couldn't believe it and told me that it would not last. For 4 more months, being highly motivated to stay off the drugs, I kept up the daily (but Sunday) treadmill routine plus stretches etc… I have been fine ever since and it is now 24 years later!
I NEVER drink coffee or tea, alcohol or coke..and even sugary foods. I try to avoid stressful situations. I don't take decongestants, regular dental anesthesia or any supplement with any stimulant (i.e. gingko biloba). I do get the occasional blip which reminds me to get on my treadmill. And I hope to avoid ever taking any drug for the rest of my life.
LIFESTYLE changes CAN turn your health and life around.

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