Atenolol comes from a group of drugs called Beta Blockers. These drugs are designed specifically for cardiovascular diseases. There are a lot of Beta Blockers available on the market such as Propranolol or Cetiprolol (seems like most end in lol). The main goal of Atenolol is to slow down the heart rate in order to reduce the stress from pumping blood. Atenolol is your chemical yoga for relaxing the heart. So as you may have guessed by its description, Atenolol is used primarily for treating high blood pressure. It has also been used for chest pains (angina) and recovery from a heart attack (acute myocardial infarction). If it can relax your heart, you can recover more easily from various heart conditions.
Blood Brain Barrier
Atenolol is one of those drugs that doctors like to prescribe. The main reason is that the drug doesn’t cross the blood-brain barrier. This is not the reason you get writers block. You see, your brain is protected from the rest of your body by a natural filter. This barrier keeps circulating blood and the brain’s extracellular fluid separated. I know, the brain needs oxygen and other hormones to function. This natural filter allows small molecules to pass but keeps the toxins at bay.
The brain is a very fragile organ when it comes to bacterial infections. It needs this filter since our bodies are constantly being infected with bacteria and other foreign viruses. The immune system defends us against these infections but even antibodies can’t pass the blood-brain barrier. The important fact to remember about this is that you want drug molecules not to pass this barrier. The smaller the molecule, the more likely it ends up in the brain and the greater the chance of having additional adverse side effects. We want to keep drug molecules away from the brain and fighting disease in our body.
Atenolol Side Effects
So the question now is how serious are the side effects. The side effects are fairly easy to handle for the most part. We are talking about, indigestion, constipation, dry mouth, stuffy nose, insomnia and fatigue. Those side effects can be handled with mild discomfort. The more serious side effects are hallucinations, reduced sexual activity (nobody wants this) and if taken in high doses over prolonged periods of time, it might bring on Type 2 Diabetes. That is why doctors get paid so well.
Additional Uses of this Antihypertensive
On a positive note, Atenolol has sometimes been used to treat migraine headaches effectively and alcohol withdrawal. It has also been prescribed to treat anxiety attacks such as stage fright. Think of it, there you are, looking at a sea of people, heart starts pumping faster, you can feel the sweat dripping from your forehead. Since Atenolol helps reduce the stress on your heart, anxiety seems like a perfect symptom to treat. Has Atenolol worked for you?