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Generic Name: Atenolol
Product Name: Atenolol-BC


Atenolol is used to treat high blood pressure, angina, and abnormal heart rhythms and is also given after a heart attack.


Atenolol is a beta-Adrenoceptor blocking agent that acts on beta-receptors in the heart. It slows the heart rate and also reduces the force that the heart must contract with. These two actions reduce the total workload of the heart and help to relieve angina. Atenolol treats cardiac arrhythmias by reduces the sensitivity of conduction cells in the heart to electrical impulses making them less likely to produce abnormal rhythms. The mechanism buy which atenolol lowers blood pressure is unknown.

Dose advice


  • Initial dosing is 50 mg once daily.
  • This may be increased by 50mg each week to a maximum of 200 mg.
  • Doses above 100 mg daily should be divided into two equal doses given in the morning and the evening

If blood pressure needs to be reduced further other antihypertensive agents may be added

Angina pectoris

  • Initial dosing is 50 mg once daily and this may be increased to 100 mg daily if necessary, given as a single dose or two equally divided doses.

Cardiac arrhythmias

  • 50 to 100 mg is given daily

Acute myocardial infarction

  • 50mg of Atenolol is given once daily for one to three years following the myocardial infarction.



Common side effects

Uncommon side effects

  • Slowing of the heart rate
  • Deterioration in pre existing heart failure
  • Dizziness, lightheadedness and fainting episodes on standing from a lying position
  • Cold hands and feet
  • Rash
  • Hair loss
  • Diarrhoea
  • Impotence
  • Difficulty walking
  • Loss of sensation
  • Ringing ears
  • Headache
  • Insomnia
  • Mood changes, nightmares, hallucinations and depression
  • Confusion
  • Dry eyes and visual disturbances
  • Asthma
  • Shortness of breath

For further information talk to your doctor.

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Posted On: 22 July, 2003
Modified On: 19 March, 2016

Created by: myVMC