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Questions & Answers
Side Effects & Adverse Reactions
There have been reports of exacerbation of angina and, in some cases, myocardial infarction, following abrupt discontinuance of propranolol therapy. Therefore, when discontinuance of propranolol is planned, the dosage should be gradually reduced over at least a few weeks and the patient should be cautioned against interruption or cessation of therapy without the physician's advice. If propranolol therapy is interrupted and exacerbation of angina occurs, it usually is advisable to reinstitute propranolol therapy and take other measures appropriate for the management of angina pectoris. Since coronary artery disease may be unrecognized, it may be prudent to follow the above advice in patients considered at risk of having occult atherosclerotic heart disease who are given propranolol for other indications.
Hypersensitivity reactions, including anaphylactic/anaphylactoid reactions, have been associated with the administration of propranolol (see ADVERSE REACTIONS).
Cutaneous reactions, including Stevens-Johnson Syndrome, toxic epidermal necrolysis, exfoliative dermatitis, erythema multiforme, and urticaria, have been reported with use of propranolol (see ADVERSE REACTIONS).
Sympathetic stimulation may be a vital component supporting circulatory function in patients with congestive heart failure, and its inhibition by beta blockade may precipitate more severe failure. Although beta blockers should be avoided in overt congestive heart failure, some have been shown to be highly beneficial when used with close follow-up in patients with a history of failure who are well compensated and are receiving additional therapies, including diuretics as needed. Beta-adrenergic blocking agents do not abolish the inotropic action of digitalis on heart muscle.
In Patients without a History of Heart Failure
Continued use of beta blockers can, in some cases, lead to cardiac failure.
In general, patients with bronchospastic lung disease should not receive beta blockers. Propranolol should be administered with caution in this setting since it may provoke a bronchial asthmatic attack by blocking bronchodilation produced by endogenous and exogenous catecholamine stimulation of beta-receptors.
Chronically administered beta-blocking therapy should not be routinely withdrawn prior to major surgery, however the impaired ability of the heart to respond to reflex adrenergic stimuli may augment the risks of general anesthesia and surgical procedures.
Beta-adrenergic blockade may prevent the appearance of certain premonitory signs and symptoms (pulse rate and pressure changes) of acute hypoglycemia, especially in labile insulin-dependent diabetics. In these patients, it may be more difficult to adjust the dosage of insulin.
Propranolol therapy, particularly when given to infants and children, diabetic or not, has been associated with hypoglycemia especially during fasting as in preparation for surgery. Hypoglycemia has been reported in patients taking propranolol after prolonged physical exertion and in patients with renal insufficiency.
Beta-adrenergic blockade may mask certain clinical signs of hyperthyroidism. Therefore, abrupt withdrawal of propranolol may be followed by an exacerbation of symptoms of hyperthyroidism, including thyroid storm. Propranolol may change thyroid function tests, increasing T4 and reverse T3 and decreasing T3.
Beta-adrenergic blockade in patients with Wolf-Parkinson-White Syndrome and tachycardia has been associated with severe bradycardia requiring treatment with a pacemaker. In one case, this result was reported after an initial dose of 5 mg propranolol.
Blocking only the peripheral dilator (beta) action of epinephrine with propranolol leaves its constrictor (alpha) action unopposed. In the event of hemorrhage or shock, there is a disadvantage in having both beta and alpha blockade since the combination prevents the increase in heart rate and peripheral vasoconstriction needed to maintain blood pressure.
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FDA Safety Alerts
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FDA Labeling Changes
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Propranolol hydrochloride tablets, USP are indicated in the management of hypertension. They may be used alone or used in combination with other antihypertensive agents, particularly a thiazide diuretic. Propranolol hydrochloride, USP tablets are not indicated in the management of hypertensive emergencies.
Propranolol hydrochloride tablets, USP are indicated to decrease angina frequency and increase exercise tolerance in patients with angina pectoris.
Propranolol hydrochloride tablets, USP are indicated to control ventricular rate in patients with atrial fibrillation and a rapid ventricular response.
Propranolol hydrochloride tablets, USP are indicated to reduce cardiovascular mortality in patients who have survived the acute phase of myocardial infarction and are clinically stable.
Propranolol hydrochloride tablets, USP are indicated for the prophylaxis of common migraine headache. The efficacy of propranolol in the treatment of a migraine attack that has started has not been established, and propranolol is not indicated for such use.
Propranolol hydrochloride tablets, USP are indicated in the management of familial or hereditary essential tremor. Familial or essential tremor consists of involuntary, rhythmic, oscillatory movements, usually limited to the upper limbs. It is absent at rest but occurs when the limb is held in a fixed posture or position against gravity and during active movement. Propranolol hydrochloride causes a reduction in the tremor amplitude, but not in the tremor frequency. Propranolol Hydrochloride Tablets, USP is not indicated for the treatment of tremor associated with Parkinsonism.
Propranolol hydrochloride tablets, USP improve NYHA functional class in symptomatic patients with hypertrophic subaortic stenosis.
Propranolol hydrochloride tablets, USP are indicated as an adjunct to alpha-adrenergic blockade to control blood pressure and reduce symptoms of catecholamine-secreting tumors.
There is currently no drug history available for this drug.
Propranolol hydrochloride, USP is a synthetic beta-adrenergic receptor blocking agent chemically described as (±)-1-(Isopropylamino)-3-(1-naphthyloxy)-2-propanol hydrochloride. Its molecular and structural formulae are:
Propranolol hydrochloride, USP is a white to off-white, crystalline powder, which is soluble in water and in alcohol, slightly soluble in chloroform; practically insoluble in ether. Its molecular weight is 295.80.
Propranolol hydrochloride Tablet, USP are available as 10 mg, 20 mg, 40 mg, 60 mg, and 80 mg tablets for oral administration.
The inactive ingredients contained in propranolol hydrochloride tablets USP are: colloidal silicon dioxide, lactose monohydrate, magnesium stearate, microcrystalline cellulose, and stearic acid. In addition, propranolol hydrochloride 10 mg tablets contain FD&C yellow #6 aluminum lake; propranolol hydrochloride 20 mg tablets contain FD&C blue #1 aluminum lake; propranolol hydrochloride 40 mg tablets contain D&C yellow #10 aluminum lake, FD&C blue #1 aluminum lake, FD&C yellow #6 aluminum lake; propranolol hydrochloride 60 mg tablets contain D&C red #30 aluminum lake; propranolol hydrochloride 80 mg tablets contain D&C yellow #10 aluminum lake, FD&C blue #1 aluminum lake, FD&C yellow #6 aluminum lake.