Labetalol (Oral)

Labetalol is a beta-blocker that reduces the blood pressure to prevent serious medical conditions from developing.

Overview

Labetalol is a beta-blocker that works to relax blood vessels in the body by blocking nerve impulses. By lowering the blood pressure the heart is able to beat more slowly and the amount of oxygen transported to the heart is increased.

Over time hypertension will lead to the development of conditions of the heart, brain and kidneys. Labetalol reduces the blood pressure and in doing so enables the patient to enjoy a reduced risk of suffering from stroke, heart attack and kidney failure.

Labetalol is taken orally and is prescribed as either Normodyne or Tandate tablets.

Labetalol is not a cure for high blood pressure. Instead it is a temporary fix to help you to lower your blood pressure to reduce risk. Cessation of the treatment will leave you exposed to the same risks and the sudden increase in blood pressure can trigger medical complications. This medication must be taken regularly to be effective and a prescription will always be accompanied by advice on how you can lower your blood pressure naturally to remove your need for the treatment.

Condition treated

  • Hypertension

Type Of Medicine

  • Beta-blocker

Side Effects

Labetalol will cause unwanted side effects to occur in addition to lowering your blood pressure. The likelihood of these side effects will increase with the dose that you are taking and the duration of use. While not all side effects will occur, in some cases they may require that you seek immediate medical attention.

You should contact your doctor immediately if you experience any of the following side effects from use:

  • Blurring of vision
  • Changed vision
  • Chills when warm
  • Cold sweats
  • Confusion or disorientation
  • Difficulty with breathing
  • Faintness or dizziness when rising from lying or sitting down
  • Labored breathing
  • Shortness of breath without exertion
  • Swelling of the face, fingers, feet or lower legs
  • Tightness across the chest
  • Wheezing

Other side effects from the use of Labetalol can also occur that would not normally necessitate that you seek medical attention from a doctor. These side effects are usually mild or will abate over time as your body gets used to use of the medication. Your healthcare professional may be able to help you alleviate these side effects:

Occurring more commonly:

  • Nausea

Occurring less commonly:

  • Acid stomach
  • Belching or burping
  • Changed sense of taste
  • Decrease of interest in sexual intercourse
  • Feeling that self or surroundings are constantly moving
  • Headaches
  • Heartburn
  • Inability to ejaculate semen
  • Inability to get an erection
  • Inability to keep an erection
  • Indigestion
  • Lack of strength
  • Loss of strength
  • Rash
  • Reduced sexual drive or desire
  • Reduction of sexual ability or performance
  • Sensation of spinning
  • Sour stomach
  • Stomach discomfort, pain or upset
  • Stuffy nose
  • Unusual or unpleasant aftertaste

Occurring only rarely:

  • Burning, crawling, tingling, itching, numbness or prickling of the skin
  • Diarrhea
  • Increased sweating
  • Pins and needles
  • Vomiting

It is also possible to suffer an overdose when using Labetalol. If you suspect that you or anyone else has taken an overdose of this medication then you should contact the emergency services immediately. The symptoms of overdose include the following:

  • Chest pains
  • Discomfort across the chest
  • Irregularity of heartbeat
  • Slowed heartrate
  • Sweating when cool
  • Unusual tiredness
  • Unusual weakness

Other side effects that have not been listed herein could also occur from the use of Labetalol. If you experience any other side effects then you should contact your doctor for advice. If you are concerned about your immediate health, however, then you should always contact the emergency services.

Dosage

In addition to taking Labetalol you will also need to make changes to your lifestyle and diet in order to lower your blood pressure naturally. Your doctor will prescribe a diet plan and exercise plan for you alongside this treatment. You need to follow this diet and exercise plan closely so that you can lower your blood pressure and stop using this medication.

Many patients who are suffering from hypertension may notice no side effects and may feel healthy. Hypertension still puts you at serious risk of developing medical complications, however, so it is important that you keep taking the medication. As Labetalol will lower the blood pressure it may also make you feel healthier but it is important to remember that this medication is not a cure for your condition. While it will help to control the conditions, you will have to take this treatment for the rest of your life unless you lower your blood pressure through other means.

You should not stop taking this medication or make changes without first discussing them with your doctor. To do so puts you at risk of suffering a stroke, heart attack or kidney failure. Your doctor will reduce your dose gradually and monitor the effect if you are going to cease use.

The dose of this medication will depend on a range of factors including your health, your blood pressure and other personal factors. You should not make any changes to the dose unless directed to by your doctor. The following information is provided as a guideline only and should not be used to change your medication dose:

  • Initially adults should take 100mg of Labetalol twice daily. The doctor may then increase the dose slowly as required.
  • The use of this medication must be determined by the doctor for use in children.

If a dose of Labetalol is missed then you should take it as soon as possible. If you are close to your next dose being due, however, then you should skip the dose and return to your usual schedule of dosing. You should not ever use a double dose of the medication.

Interactions

Certain medications should never be used in conjunction with one another because they can cause severe medical problems by interacting with one another in the body. In some cases these side effects from interactions can be life-threatening. In other cases certain medications may prevent one another from working and may increase the risk of suffering side effects. To prevent the occurrence of interactions you should inform your doctor of all other treatments that you are receiving or taking before you receive Labetalol. This includes all prescribed medications and over the counter treatments. For Labetalol it is especially important that you inform your doctor if you are taking any of the following:

The use of Labetalol in conjunction with the following medications would not normally be recommended. In some cases the use of both treatments may be the best treatment for you and in this case your doctor may prescribe both with adjustments made to the dose or frequency of use:

  • Verapamil
  • Rivastigmine
  • Oxymetazoline
  • Lacosamide
  • Iobenguane I 123
  • Halothane
  • Fingolimod
  • Fenoldopam
  • Dronedarone
  • Diltiazem
  • Crizotinib

The following medications may increase the risk of certain side effects occurring when used in conjunction with Labetalol. The use of both treatments may still be best for you but your doctor may need to adjust the dose and the frequency of use to prevent interactions from having a severe impact:

  • Vildagliptin
  • Valdecoxib
  • Urapidil
  • Trimazosin
  • Tolmetin
  • Tolfenamic Acid
  • Tolbutamide
  • Tolazamide
  • Tiaprofenic Acid
  • Terazosin
  • Tenoxicam
  • Tamsulosin
  • Sulindac
  • St John's Wort
  • Sodium Salicylate
  • Sitagliptin
  • Saxagliptin
  • Salsalate
  • Salicylic Acid
  • Rosiglitazone
  • Rofecoxib
  • Repaglinide
  • Proquazone
  • Propyphenazone
  • Proglumetacin
  • Prazosin
  • Pranoprofen
  • Pramlintide
  • Piroxicam
  • Pioglitazone
  • Piketoprofen
  • Phenylbutazone
  • Phentolamine
  • Phenoxybenzamine
  • Parecoxib
  • Oxyphenbutazone
  • Oxaprozin
  • Nimesulide Beta Cyclodextrin
  • Nimesulide
  • Niflumic Acid
  • Nepafenac
  • Nateglinide
  • Naproxen
  • Nabumetone
  • Moxisylyte
  • Morniflumate
  • Miglitol
  • Mibefradil
  • Metildigoxin
  • Metformin
  • Meloxicam
  • Mefenamic Acid
  • Meclofenamate
  • Magnesium Sulfate
  • Lumiracoxib
  • Loxoprofen
  • Lornoxicam
  • Lixisenatide
  • Liraglutide
  • Linagliptin
  • Ketorolac
  • Ketoprofen
  • Isoflurane
  • Iobenguane I 131
  • Insulin Lispro, Recombinant
  • Insulin Human Regular
  • Insulin Human Isophane (NPH)
  • Insulin Human Inhaled
  • Insulin Glulisine
  • Insulin Glargine, Recombinant
  • Insulin Detemir
  • Insulin Degludec
  • Insulin Aspart, Recombinant
  • Indomethacin
  • Ibuprofen
  • Glyburide
  • Glipizide
  • Glimepiride
  • Flurbiprofen
  • Flufenamic Acid
  • Floctafenine
  • Feprazone
  • Fepradinol
  • Fenoprofen
  • Felbinac
  • Exenatide
  • Etoricoxib
  • Etofenamate
  • Etodolac
  • Epinephrine
  • Enflurane
  • Empagliflozin
  • Dulaglutide
  • Droxicam
  • Doxazosin
  • Dipyrone
  • Digoxin
  • Digitoxin
  • Diflunisal
  • Diclofenac
  • Dexketoprofen
  • Dexibuprofen
  • Deslanoside
  • Dapagliflozin
  • Clonixin
  • Cimetidine
  • Choline Salicylate
  • Chlorpropamide
  • Celecoxib
  • Canagliflozin
  • Bunazosin
  • Bufexamac
  • Bromfenac
  • Aspirin
  • Arbutamine
  • Amtolmetin Guacil
  • Amiodarone
  • Alogliptin
  • Alfuzosin
  • Albiglutide
  • Acetyldigoxin
  • Acemetacin
  • Aceclofenac
  • Acarbose

This list of interactions has been selected for severity but other interactions with Labetalol can also occur. Ensure that you tell your doctor of all substances you are taking before you begin treatment.

Other medical problems from which you are suffering can also affect the use of this treatment. You must inform your doctor of all medical conditions which are afflicting you before you begin use of Labetalol. Some conditions may prohibit use while others may increase the risk of experiencing side effects.

Chest pain may occur when ceasing use in patients with the following condition:

  • Angina

Patients with the following conditions should not use this medication:

  • Asthma
  • Bradycardia
  • History of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
  • Heart block
  • Heart failure
  • Hypotension

Use caution in patients with the following conditions:

  • Liver disease
  • Lung disease
  • Pheochromocytoma

Some of the symptoms of the following conditions may be hidden by the use of Labetalol:

  • Diabetes
  • Hyperthyroidism
  • Hypoglycemia

Other medical problems could also affect the use of Labetalol. You should inform your doctor of all medical problems from which you suffer before use.

Warnings

Before you begin use of Labetalol it is important that you weigh the benefits of use against the risks that it will expose you to. You should discuss these risks with your doctor and should ensure that you have discussed all of the following before beginning use:

Allergies ' You must inform your doctor of any allergies that you suffer from. This is particularly important where you have had a bad or unusual reaction to any medications in the past. Allergic reactions to medications, dyes, preservatives and other substances may prohibit the use of this medication.

Pediatric' The safety and efficiency of Labetalol has not been established in children. You should discuss this with your doctor before use.

Geriatric' There are no known limitations to the use of this medication in the elderly. Elderly patients are, however, more likely to be suffering from other medical conditions that may prohibit or limit use of Labetalol. You should use caution when treating elderly patients.

Pregnancy'There is a risk to using this medication during pregnancy. You should inform your doctor if you are pregnant before beginning use. If you plan to or think you may become pregnant in the future then you should discuss this with your doctor. You should aim to lower your blood pressure naturally before becoming pregnant so that you can cease use and remove the risk to your baby.

Breastfeeding ' There is a minimal risk to the use of this medication while breastfeeding. Discuss this with your doctor before beginning use.

You will need to have a regular checkup with your doctor when you are taking this treatment. This will allow for your blood pressure to be checked and will allow the doctor to see if any unwanted side effects are occurring.

You could develop liver problems during the use of this treatment. You should contact your doctor immediately if you experience any of the following symptoms of a liver injury:

  • Flu-like symptoms
  • Stomach pain
  • Stomach tenderness
  • Darkened urine
  • Itchiness of the skin
  • Loss of appetite
  • Yellowing of the eyes
  • Yellowing of the skin

Labetalol can cause heart failure to occur. You should contact the emergency services if you experience any of the following symptoms of heart failure:

  • Chest pain
  • Discomfort across the chest
  • Dilation of neck veins
  • Extreme fatigue
  • Irregularity of breathing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Swelling of the face
  • Swelling of the fingers
  • Swelling of the feet
  • Weight gain
  • Wheezing

Your blood sugar levels may change with the use of this treatment. If you are diabetic then you may notice changes in your blood sugar. You should discuss this with your doctor before you begin treatment.

You may need to stop using this treatment for several days before undergoing other treatments. Ensure your doctor and dentist are both aware that you are taking this treatment.

Storage

You should keep Labetalol in a sealed container at room temperature. Store it away from heat, moisture and direct light. Ensure that you prevent it from freezing.

Store well out of the reach of children at all times.

Dispose of any unwanted or unneeded medication properly and safely. Your healthcare professional will be able to advise you on how best to do so safely.

Summary

Labetalol is used to lower the blood pressure of patients who are suffering from hypertension. By lowering the blood pressure the risk of serious medical conditions including heart attack, kidney failure and stroke is reduced. Labetalol is not a cure, however. The treatment will help to control the blood pressure of the patient but will not cure it.

Labetalol will always be prescribed with dietary and lifestyle advice that you should follow closely. Reducing your fat and salt intake and increasing your exercise will help to reduce your blood pressure naturally and can then allow you to cease use of this treatment. Without making changes to your lifestyle to lower your blood pressure you will be left taking this medication for the rest of your life. With prolonged use will also come greater risks of developing unwanted side effects.

Patients should discuss the risks of use in relation to the benefits of use before beginning treatment with Labetalol.