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Toprol XL, a beta-blocker whose generic equivalent is Metoprolol Succinate, treats chest pain, heart failure and high blood pressure. Lowering high blood pressure is conducive to stroke, heart attack and kidney disease prevention.

The drug blocks the action of a natural chemical in the human body known as epinephrine affecting the heart and blood vessels. This leads to a lower heart rate, blood pressure and a lessened strain on the heart.

Toprol may be also used for irregular heartbeats, migraine headache prevention and, after a heart attack, to improve survival.

It may take several weeks for a patient to obtain maximum benefit from the treatment of high blood pressure. Patients must continue using Toprol even if feeling unwell because most individuals with high blood pressure do not feel ill.

Patients are urged to take the drug as prescribed to prevent chest pain, a second heart attack or migraine headache. Use other drugs to relieve sudden attacks such as nitroglycerin tablets placed under the tongue for chest pain and triptan drugs such as sumatriptan for migraines.

Side effects include drowsiness, dizziness, tiredness, diarrhea, slow heartbeat, decreased sexual ability and reduced blood flow to your hands and feet, causing them to feel cold.
Patients must notify their doctors about their blood sugar level problems, allergies, especially to Toprol and other beta-blockers such as atenolol and propanolol, incidents of heart disease, breathing problems, liver disease, blood circulation problems, mental/mood disorders and a certain muscle disease known as myasthenia gravis.

(NOTE: PharmPsych.com is featuring the first 10 of 200 of the most common prescription medicine brands reflected in Google’s app for Rx drug flash cards. The flash cards and the app were developed as visual aids to instruct medical students on modern drugs. In a series of summaries, we recap the purpose and nature of each drug, its side effects and advice on usage. The series will feature Lipitor, Singulair, Lexapro, Nexium, Synthroid, Plavix, Toprol XL, Prevacid, Vytorin and Advair Diskus.)

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Last updated September 2014