Metoprolol vs Bystolic: Drug Comparison

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If you have high blood pressure or other heart issues, your doctor may have discussed beta-blockers with you. Bystolic and Metoprolol are both popular beta-blockers that you may be interested in taking.

Key Differences Between Bystolic and Metoprolol

Bystolic, which is the brand name for the drug Nebivolol, is a beta-blocker used to treat high blood pressure. It treats hypertension by affecting the blood flow through veins and arteries.

Also affecting the heart and circulation, Metoprolol Succinate is used to treat both hypertension, also known as high blood pressure, and angina, a form of chest pain that happens when there is reduced blood flow to the heart. In some cases, Metoprolol lowers the risk of fatality and lessens the possibility of heart failure leading to hospitalization.

Beta-blockers are used to treat high blood pressure and other issues when appropriate. They can lower blood pressure by causing your heart to beat at a lower speed and with less effort.

Which is Better for Heart Issues?

Also referred to as beta-adrenergic blocking agents, beta-blockers function by suppressing the effects of adrenaline within the body, which is also known as the hormone epinephrine. Improving blood flow, beta-blockers can open arteries and veins, as well. There are a variety of beta-blockers, and your doctor can talk to you about the best one for you; some affect the heart and others affect both your blood vessels and your heart.

Some of the beta-blockers available include the following:

Individuals who have high blood pressure often turn to other treatments and lifestyle changes; beta-blockers are not usually the first line of treatment when hypertension is first diagnosed. If the problem continues and high blood pressure does not respond to other treatments, a beta-blocker may be introduced.

Beta-blockers are typically prescribed to treat or improve conditions in individuals who have an irregular heartbeat, heart failure, and chest pain.

Beta Blockers and Exercise

Beta-blockers are useful in treating abnormal heart rhythms and are sometimes prescribed after an individual suffers a heart attack or experiences another cardiac condition. Since exercise often means exertion, it is common for people on beta-blockers to wonder if it is appropriate to exercise.

Talk to your healthcare provider about your medical history, prescriptions, and what exercise you want to do. Your doctor can walk you through how the beta-blockers are affecting your body and give you the appropriate recommendation.

For many, exercise and the beta-blocker drugs have parallel and complementary impacts because they both affect heart rate and blood pressure. Exercise has further benefits and can improve life in a variety of ways. If your doctor and healthcare team clear you for exercise while on beta-blockers, physical activity may be beneficial.

Bystolic Side Effects

While there are benefits, Bystolic can produce side effects, such as:

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  • Lightheadedness
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches
  • Nausea
  • Stomach upset

There are other serious side effects, too. Seek medical help if you are having trouble breathing, chest pain, sudden changes in weight, heartbeat irregularity, or feelings of fainting.

When it comes to weight gain and loss, it is important to track your weight and communicate that to your healthcare provider no matter what beta-blocker you are taking. This is because people taking beta-blockers are at risk of congestion in the chest. Weight fluctuations, such as suddenly gaining four pounds or more, could be an indicator of a serious problem that needs to be addressed.

Sometimes Bystolic or other beta-blockers are used to help individuals experiencing symptoms of anxiety. Because they lower heart rates and blood pressure numbers, medical professionals have suggested beta-blockers for the racing heartbeat and fear surges associated with high anxiety. More than one clinical study has connected beta-blockers to a possible treatment for cancer in some cases, as well.

Metoprolol Side Effects

Metoprolol Succinate is a beta-blocker and is often marketed under the brand names Lopressor and Toprol XL. The drug is used to help treat angina, heart failure, control heart rate, and hypertension. A doctor or healthcare provider can deliver the drug via injection, but it is also available in oral tablet form, both in immediate-release and extended-release versions.

The difference between the brand names Lopressor and Toprol XL is that each of these Metoprolol oral tablets has a different salt form, which can help in treating different conditions in patients. The salt form in Lopressor is metoprolol tartrate for immediate release tablets. The salt form in Toprol-XL is metoprolol succinate for extended-release tablets. Both are used to lower blood pressure and fight chest pain. The difference is that metoprolol tartrate can assist in preventing heart attacks and heart failure patients can benefit from metoprolol succinate formulas.

While it has life-saving benefits, Metoprolol may cause some side effects, such as: 

  • Constipation
  • Cough and wheezing
  • Diarrhea
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Rashes
  • Reduced sex drive

In many cases, these side effects are not severe. Some even report that they go away after a period of time. Of course, all side effects should be discussed with a pharmacist or doctor to be sure they are normal.

There are some more serious side effects to watch out for, as well. If you experience fainting, dizziness, painful extremities, fatigue that progresses, and depression while taking Metoprolol, seek medical attention immediately.

Heart disease is a health crisis for many in America. In fact, it is a leading cause of death in the country. To reduce your risk of heart disease, maintain a healthy weight, eat nutritiously, exercise regularly, manage your blood pressure, avoid alcohol and tobacco, and manage diabetes and stress and talk with your doctor for more information.

If you need are looking to enhance your health and life, talk to your doctor. Your medical team can recommend lifestyle changes and prescribe blood pressure medications if needed. Your healthcare provider may suggest a beta-blocker if you have a history of hypertension, family history of stroke or other heart issues. At that point, it is a good time to talk to your doctor about the key differences between all of the beta-blockers on the market as well as any clinical trials, including Bystolic and Metoprolol.

About Cary Byrd

eDrugSearch founder, Cary Byrd, has been called an “e-health innovator” by MarketIntellNow, interviewed by top pharmaceutical industry journalists, invited to Matthew Holt’s Health 2.0 Conference and a Consumer Report's health summit, and highlighted on numerous health blogs.

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