Propranolol is the generic name for Inderal, inderal LA and InnoPran XL. Propranolol is used to treat tremors, angina (chest pain), heart rhythm disorders, heart and circulation conditions, high blood pressure (hypertension). This medication has also been used to treat and prevent heart attacks and to decrease the frequency of migraines.
It is important to understand a few things about propranolol. Do not stop taking it without consulting with your doctor. This could aggravate your condition. Before any surgery you may have to stop using this drug for a period of time, make sure the surgeon knows you are being treated with propranolol. The side effects of propranolol are impaired thinking and decreased reaction time. Be cautious if driving or any activity that requires alertness. Drinking alcohol can increase the sleepiness and vertigo. Propranolol is not a complete medication for the condition it is prescribed, but rather part of an overall treatment plan that should include diet, exercise and weight control, especially if you are being treated for hypertension. Remember, hypertension has no symptoms, so continue to use the medicine as directed, even if you feel okay. Make sure you keep all of your doctors appointments for continued health monitoring.
Propranolol is a beta-blocker type of drug. Beta-blocker drugs affect the circulation of blood (through arteries and veins) and the function of the heart. Propranolol can also be prescribed for other conditions, but they are not detailed here.
Before taking propranolol, make sure you discuss with your physician, the following information if it applies to you: if you have bronchitis, asthma, diabetes, emphysema, low blood pressure, heart blockage or heart sick sinus syndrome or slow heart rate or congestive heart failure, kidney disease, depression, liver disease, thyroid condition, myasthenia gravis, pheochromocytoma or circulation problems such as Raynaud’s syndrome. If you have or do experience any of these conditions you may not be an appropriate patient for this medication or the dosage may need to be adjusted for your needs.
The US FDA categorizes drugs based on safety for pregnant women. Propranolol is categorized as C. This indicates that this drug MAY cause harm to an unborn child, you should discuss all risk factors with your doctor before taking this medication if you are expecting. Propranolol can pass through breast milk to an infant. Do not take propranolol if you are nursing; discuss the safety with the pediatrician and your physician first.
Propranolol must be taken as exactly prescribed by your health practitioner, at the same time every day and with a full glass of water. Pills need to be swallowed whole, especially the time release medication. Liquid propranolol must be measured with a marked measuring spoon or a dose measuring device provided by your pharmacist. Do not skip or stop taking propranolol without checking with your doctor. Propranolol can cause complications with surgery, make sure your surgeon understands you are taking propranolol. You may have to stop this medication for a period of time before, during and after surgery, depending on the surgeon’s recommendations.
If this medication is being used to treat hypertension, then it is important to be checked on a regular basis by your physician. Do not miss your appointments! Store this drug away from moisture and at typical room temperature.
If you miss a dose of propranolol, take the missed dose as soon as possible but not if the next scheduled dose is less that four hours away. If the next scheduled dose is soon, skip the dose. Do not double up your dosage. A missed dose of the extended release tablets (brand name, such as Inderal La, InnoPran XL) can be taken only if the next dose is over eight hours away. Symptoms of an overdose are bluish colored fingernails, vertigo, weakness, fainting, convulsions, uneven heart rate and shortness of breath. If you experience these symptoms, seek immediate medical treatment.
A severe reaction indicates an allergy which may be life-threatening, seek emergency medical intervention. Allergic reaction presents as shortness of breath, hives, swelling of lips, throat, face or tongue, fainting or rash. If you experience other serious side effects, contact your doctor immediately, such as: uneven or slow heartbeat, edema in ankles or feet, gastrointestinal upset, cold extremities, depression, jaundice, dark urine or clay colored stools. Other side effects that are not so serious are likely to occur such as impotence, decreased sex drive, insomnia, anxiety, and tiredness,
Make sure all of the physicians who are treating you are aware that you are using propranolol. Certain medications can affect propranolol, just as this medication can affect other medications. It is important that your physician know ALL of the drugs you are taking, whether prescription or over-the-counter. If you have any other questions, your pharmacist or doctor will be able to help.
Propranolol hydrochloride (abbreviated here as Propranolol HCl) is a synthetic beta-adrenergic receptor blocking agent chemically described as 1- (Isopropylamino)-3-(1-naphthyloxy)-2-propanol hydrochloride. Propranolol hydrochloride is a stable, white, crystalline solid which is readily soluble in water and ethanol. Its molecular weight is 295.80. Propranolol HCl is available as 10 mg, 20 mg, 40 mg, 60 mg, and 80 mg tablets for oral administration and as a 1 mg/ml sterile injectable solution for intravenous administration.
Propranolol has the following structural formula: