Beta Blockers question if I may...

16 messages
Dustboy    pirate
15/01/2013 at 14:50

Are they used as a temporary measure to kind of hold things in limbo pending the outcome of further investigation or am I barking up the wrong tree?

Once you are one them, does that usually mean on them for good?

Cheers.

 

15/01/2013 at 15:20

depends on what they are being used to treat?

15/01/2013 at 15:24
What were you prescribed them for? High blood pressure? If so, it's usually the case that you continue to take them on the assumption that without them your blood pressure would return to a high level. It depends on the cause of the hypertension though. If an underlying cause is diagnosed and treated, you may be able to stop the medication. If you have primary hypertension (no underlying disease causing it), then it's more likely you'll need the meds long-term. Unless there are lifestyle changes you can make - diet, exercise, stress management, etc.
15/01/2013 at 15:44

As the others say it depends why you are taking them, but they are a bit of a favourite with doctors because they are so effective, the unfortunate side effect for runners is they have a tendency to limit your heart rate and hence ability to work at higher levels. 

Dustboy    pirate
15/01/2013 at 16:07

Sorry, I should have given more info. Went into AF around 150bpm last Saturday week at teatime, felt really rough, into A&E, 2 lots of beta blockers Bisoprolol, then an anti arrhythmic flecainide before it popped back into sinus rhythm after 7 hours (why are all these words so hard to spell). First time it hasn't reset itself in less than a minute or so (like it did at Outlaw) and first time it has lasted long enough for them to record it (and first time I felt this shite). Medics said it was deffo the right call to go in. My wife said they seemed very concerned and "upgraded" my bed four times. Told no exercise though they did say they they would have treated me earlier if I hadn't been so fit that my ticker was used to 150bpm for hours. Sent away with Bisoprolol 2.5mg daily pending consultant appointment.

They are HORRIBLE!

Ticker is structurally sound bar slight enlargement of left atrium (apparently likely down to IM training). BP was 140/80 in A&E, usually sits around 118/75 these days.

Anyway, I am just kinda hoping it's short term meds and clutching at straws TBH. I just want to move again without feeling like I am about to keel over. And yes I am moaning a LOT more than usual and are they supposed to get you down?

If I am honest, had been caning the Xmas juices for 3 weeks.

So hit me with the bad stuff, then the good stuff, if there is any. Will I run/bike/swim again? Am I just overblowing everything and need to HTFU. I don't know so am an open book!

  

15/01/2013 at 16:08
They're not usually used first line for BP anymore

Are you on them for palpitations? Presumably propranolol?? If so -yes-they're usually short term for symptom control pending 24 hour ECG etc. If for BP usually atenolol and they'd be long term. If after heart attack usually bisoprolol and will be long term. Also propranolol gets used for anxiety and would be a short term or situational thing. There's also unusual uses for ones like carvedilol if you've got oesophageal varices.

Although they do somewhat slow your resting heart rate down I don't know if they actually limit your response to exertion
15/01/2013 at 16:15
Sorry. Cross post. Has your rhythm settled back down to normal now then

If you've only had one confirmed episode of AF it might well be that the bisoprolol can be stopped and it'll behave on its' own

More of an issue if the AF isn't paroxysmal and persists. You might need to be on more heavy duty anti arrhythmic drugs and possibly anticoagulants long term. There are procedures like cardio version or ablation which can try to reverse the underlying basic problem though.

I'm sure the cardiologist will sort you out. I'm sure you'll be able to get back to training and racing but need to respect it while it's getting sorted. Good luck!
Dustboy    pirate
15/01/2013 at 17:01

Been in sinus for ten days now with occasional slips into AF, maybe a few times a day, but never more than a couple of seconds. If anything that is more frequent than normal. Told to take 75mg aspirin a day so far as well. Not touched a drop of happy juice since.

A&E note recommended consider ablation in the note to consultant.

So would a 7 hour spell in AF make you more likely to go into it again or doesn't it work like that?

Guess I am just hoping that an "afferlete" would have that aspect considered when looking at treatment options.

Cheers.

Holds on to, " I'm sure you'll be able to get back to training and racing but need to respect it while it's getting sorted"

15/01/2013 at 17:07
I'm no expert but I suspect the more episodes you have and the longer they are the more likely it's going to be an issue for you

Ablation might be the best overall solution. Just make sure you get a cardiologist who's done good few of them. Outcome is very dependent on the experience of the specialist who does it. When it works it's problem solved though

They might try to cardiovert you first - 50 joule shock (with you sedated!)

Wise to stay off the sauce
Dustboy    pirate
15/01/2013 at 20:09

Presumably can only shock when you are in AF?

So I suppose the answer to the original question is they can be temporary then.

 

 

15/01/2013 at 23:19
Taking notice of random people on the internet over trained medical professionals-Good Call
Frazellis is no expert by his own admission but that doesn't stop him posting three times offering advice.
Dustboy    pirate
15/01/2013 at 23:23

Noted SR. Just really trying to get a bit of a wider picture if I can. Maybe a bit of personal experience.

 

16/01/2013 at 19:32
Sussex runner. I'm a GP. Been a doctor for 22 years. So not a cardiologist but not exactly totally lacking in knowledge

Dust boy asked a question. I tried to give some vaguely helpful advice based on my (limited) knowledge

Keep your nose out mate
Dustboy    pirate
16/01/2013 at 21:00

And appreciated Frazerelli. I guessed you might be in the profession.

SR does have a point that there have been a number of untrained responses to various issues over the years on these fora, but equally, there are some very respected medical bods on here too. And, from time to time, I have been most grateful.

 

16/01/2013 at 21:11
You're welcome! I agree entirely that you've no idea who's posting all sorts of poorly informed guff in response to questions. I wouldn't dream of attempting to have a go amateurishly answering questions on subjects I don't know anything about!

SR may have a point but his vaguely confrontational approach is bound to slightly irritate.
17/01/2013 at 09:34

Dustboy, good luck in getting the AF episodes sorted out. I have different cardiac problems and have managed to avoid BBs so far. There is a site where fellow 'cardiac athletes' hang out, http://www.cardiacathletes.com/. Let us know how your consultations go.

Joe

 


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