Whether you or a loved one suffers from hypertension and takes Bystolic blood pressure medication, you probably have questions about the drug. Learn how Bystolic blood pressure medication works and its possible side effects and risks.
- Approved for Adults: Bystolic blood pressure medication treats hypertension–also known as high blood pressure–in adults. It has not been approved for children with high blood pressure.
- Beta Blocker: Bystolic, also known as nebivolol, works by blocking beta-adrenergic receptors so adrenaline cannot stimulate them. As a result, heart contractions decrease in force, and the heart rate slows down. Beta blockers also relax blood vessels so the heart does not need to pump as hard, according to the Bystolic website.
- Dosage: You can take Bystolic blood pressure medication with or without food. Although your doctor will individualize your dosage to meet your needs, most patients begin Bystolic therapy at a low, 5 mg dose once per day, advises the National Institute of Health. Every two weeks, your doctor can revisit the dose and adjust upward if necessary. Bystolic tablets come in 2.5mg, 5mg, 10mg and 20mg doses.
- Side Effects: Although headaches and fatigue occur most frequently, Bystolic can also cause dizziness, insomnia, rashes, and swelling in your legs — also known as edema. It might also mask symptoms of low blood sugar or hypothyroidism, meaning you can suffer from either condition and not realize it.
- Abruptly stopping Bystolic medication therapy can cause "acute exacerbation of coronary artery disease," cautions the National Institutes of Health "Daily Med" website. Never stop taking Bystolic without talking to your medical professional first.
- Although Bystolic blood pressure medication can be combined with other blood pressure medications, it interacts with several types of drugs, so make sure to tell your doctor about all your medications.