Which medications in the drug class Beta-Blockers, Alpha Activity are used in the treatment of Hypertension?

Updated: Feb 22, 2019
  • Author: Matthew R Alexander, MD, PhD; Chief Editor: Eric H Yang, MD  more...
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Answer

Beta-Blockers, Alpha Activity

Beta-blockers, such as labetalol and carvedilol, have peripheral vasodilatory effects that act via antagonism of the alpha-1 receptor in addition to beta-receptors.

Labetalol (Trandate)

Labetalol is indicated for the management of hypertension. Labetalol tablets may be used alone or in combination with other antihypertensive agents, especially thiazide and loop diuretics. The initial dose is 100 mg given twice daily. The dose may be titrated after 2-3 days in increments of 100 mg twice a day every 2-3 days (maximum 2400 mg/day).

Labetalol's actions at alpha-1 and beta-receptors lead to vasodilation and decreased total peripheral resistance, which results in decreased blood pressure without a substantial decrease in resting heart rate, cardiac output, or stroke volume.

Carvedilol (Coreg, Coreg CR)

Carvedilol is approved for the management of essential hypertension. It can be used as monotherapy or in combination with other antihypertensive agents, especially thiazide-type diuretics. The initial dose is 6.25 mg given twice daily. The dose can be titrated at intervals of 7-14 days to 12.5 mg twice daily, then to 25 mg twice daily as needed (maximum 50 mg/day).

Similar to labetalol, carvedilol antagonizes both alpha-1 and beta-receptors. Carvedilol lowers standing blood pressure more than supine blood pressure; orthostatic hypotension may occur.


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