Which medications in the drug class Beta Blockers, Beta-1 Selective are used in the treatment of Hemorrhagic Stroke?

Updated: Apr 22, 2019
  • Author: David S Liebeskind, MD, FAAN, FAHA, FANA; Chief Editor: Andrew K Chang, MD, MS  more...
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Answer

Beta Blockers, Beta-1 Selective

Beta blockers are used to reduce BP and risk factors for heart disease. They are first-line agents for acute BP reduction in hemorrhagic stroke, but they are second-line agents for stroke prevention. Selective beta blockers obstruct access to beta-1 receptors more than they do to beta-2 receptors; nonselective beta blockers obstruct access to beta-1 and beta-2 receptors.

Esmolol (Brevibloc)

Esmolol is an ultra-short-acting agent that selectively blocks beta-1 receptors with little or no effect on beta-2 receptor types. This drug is particularly useful in patients with elevated arterial pressure, especially if surgery is planned, and its short half-life of 8 minutes allows for titration and quick discontinuation, if necessary.

Esmolol is also useful in patients at risk for experiencing complications from beta blockade, particularly those with reactive airway disease, mild to moderate left-ventricular dysfunction, and/or peripheral vascular disease.


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