GENERIC NAME: Labetalol

COMMON BRANDS: Trandate, Normodyne

Labetalol is an oral prescription drug belongs to a class of medications called “non-selective beta blockers” with “selective α1-blocking activity”. Labetalol comes as an oral tablet form and as an intravenous (IV) injection. It is sold under the common brand name “Trandate” used to high blood pressure. It is available as a generic drug. Generic drugs usually cost less.

Labetalol work by preventing adrenaline (norepinephrine) from acting beta-adrenoreceptors that are present in blood vessels, and in heart, were as α1-receptors are present within vascular smooth muscle. This lessens the systemic arterial blood pressure and systemic vascular resistance without a much reduction in resting heart rate, stroke volume or cardiac output.

What is Labetalol used for?

Hypertension:

Labetalol is used to treat hypertension either alone or in combination with other antihypertensive medications (such as thiazide and loop diuretics). Lowering blood pressure helps to prevent strokes, heart attacks, and kidney problems.

How to use Labetalol?

Take labetalol tablet orally with food or without food as directed by the doctor, usually, take twice a day. The dose of this drug depends on your medical condition and response to the treatment.

Your blood pressure or a heart condition may not be controlled if you alter your dose or use it more frequently than prescribed by your doctor.

Use this medication regularly as instructed by your doctor to get the most benefit from it. It is essential to continue this drug even if you feel better. Many people with high blood pressure do not feel sick.

To help you remember to take this drug at the same time each day. Carefully follow all the directions on your prescription label, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take labetalol precisely as directed.

Do not suddenly discontinue using this drug. This could increase your risk of angina (chest pain) or a heart attack.

You may require at least two weeks to observe the full benefit of this medicine. Inform your doctor if your medical condition remains unchanged or if it worsens (for example, if your blood pressure continues to remains high, or you have worsening symptoms of heart failure like increased shortness of breath).

What are the side effects of Labetalol?

The common side effects observed with the use of this drug include dizziness, tiredness, and nausea. If any of these effects remain or worsen, inform your doctor/pharmacist immediately.

Rarely this drug cause serious (possibly fatal) liver disease symptoms like persistent nausea/vomiting, severe stomach/abdominal pain, yellowing eyes/skin, dark urine. If you observe any of these effects, seek immediate medical attention.

Get emergency medical assistance right away if you notice any of the following severe side effects, like blue fingers/toes, fainting, very slow heartbeat, new or worsening symptoms of heart failure (such as breathlessness, swelling ankles/feet, unusual tiredness, sudden weight gain), mental/mood changes (such as confusion, mood swings, depression).

Get up slowly from a sitting/lying position, as this may help to lessen the risk of dizziness and lightheadedness.

Labetalol may decrease the flow of blood to your hands and feet, causing them to feel cold. Avoid smoking or chewing of tobacco as this may worsen this effect.

A severe allergic reaction to this drug is very rare. However, symptoms of a severe allergic reaction such as rashes, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness, trouble breathing may occur. Get emergency medical assistance immediately if you notice any of the above side effects.

This is not a complete record of all possible side effects. Inform your doctor at the earliest, if you notice any of the side effects that are not mentioned in this article.

See also Warning and Precautions sections.

What are the precautions while using Labetalol?

Inform your doctor/pharmacist before taking Labetalol, if you are allergic to it; or if you have other allergies. This drug may also contain some inactive ingredients that can cause allergic reactions or other problems. Talk to your doctor/pharmacist for more information.

Inform your doctor/pharmacist about all the products you are using including prescription, non-prescription, vitamins, nutritional supplements, and herbal products.

This drug can make it difficult to control your blood sugar level. Monitor your blood sugar levels regularly and share the results with the doctor. Notify your doctor quickly if you notice any symptoms of hyperglycemia (high blood sugar level) such as an increase in thirst or urination. Your doctor may recommend you exercises, diet or may adjust your diabetes medication.

If you have diabetes, labetalol may mask the symptoms of hypoglycemia (sudden fall in blood sugar level) such as fast/pounding heartbeat you would usually feel when you are hypoglycemic. Other symptoms of hypoglycemia such as sweating and dizziness, does not change by this drug.

The use of labetalol is not recommended, if you have a heart rhythm problems (like a slow heartbeat, second- or third-degree atrioventricular block), severe heart failure, breathing problems (like asthma, chronic bronchitis, emphysema).

Share your medical history with doctor, before using this drug mainly of treated stable heart failure, kidney disease, liver disease, hyperthyroidism, severe allergic reactions including those needing treatment with epinephrine, blood circulation problems (like Raynaud’s disease, peripheral vascular disease), mental/mood disorders (like depression), myasthenia gravis (muscle disease), eye problems (cataracts, glaucoma).

Alcohol or marijuana can make you further dizzy or drowsy. Avoid alcoholic beverages. Discuss with your doctor if you are using marijuana.

This drug is recommended to treat high blood pressure in pregnancy. It is essential to control high blood pressure for the health of the mother and unborn baby. If you are pregnant/planning to get pregnant, discuss with your doctor about the benefits and risks of using this drug.

Rarely, babies born to mothers who were on labetalol during pregnancy may have symptoms of low blood pressure, slow heartbeat, slow breathing, and low blood sugar (such as shaking, unusual sweating) for a few days after delivery. Notify the doctor right away if you notice any of these symptoms in your newborn.

This medication cross into breast milk and the effect on a nursing infant is unknown. Consult your doctor before breastfeeding.

What are the drug interactions of Labetalol?

Labetalol may interact with other medications, herbs, or vitamins you may be using. A drug interaction is when a substance changes the way a drug works which can be harmful or hinder the drug from working well.

Do not start, stop, or alter the dose of the drug without discussing your doctor because your doctor may be monitoring you for possible drug interactions.

This drug interacts with cimetidine (H1 antihistamine) and fingolimod.

NSAIDs (such as diclofenac, ibuprofen, indomethacin, ketorolac, nabumetone, naproxen), a nasal decongestant (such as phenylephrine, pseudoephedrine), cough-and-cold products, may decrease the effectiveness of labetalol.

Taking labetalol with certain heart medications (nitroglycerin, digoxin, clonidine, amiodarone, disopyramide) may cause low blood pressure and heart rate.

Taking labetalol with a tricyclic antidepressant (amitriptyline, doxepin, nortriptyline, clomipramine) may increase your risk of tremors.

This is not a full record of all possible drug interactions.

WARNINGS:

Stopping the drug:

Do not suddenly discontinue this medication without informing your doctor. Some conditions may become dangerous when you suddenly stop this drug. In some people who have abruptly terminated taking similar drugs have had chest pain, heart attack, and even irregular heartbeat. If your doctor recommends you to stop this drug, your doctor may ask you to reduce your dose gradually.

When you gradually decrease the dose of this drug before discontinuing this medication, your doctor may recommend you to restrict physical activity to reduce pressure on your heart. Get medical emergency assistance immediately if you notice symptoms such as chest pain/tightness/pressure, unusual sweating, trouble in breathing, chest pain spreading to the jaw/neck/arm, or fast/irregular heartbeat.

Other conditions:

Before taking labetalol, inform your doctor about all of your health conditions such as diabetes, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), asthma, poor circulation, heart failure or other heart problems, hyperthyroidism.

What are the forms and strengths of Labetalol?

Generic: Labetalol
Form: Oral tablet
Strengths: 100mg, 200mg, 300mg

Brand: Trandate
Form: Oral tablet
Strengths: 100mg, 200mg, 300mg

What is the dosage of Labetalol?

For Hypertension (high blood pressure):

Adult (18 to 64 years):

Initial dose: Take 100mg twice per day.
Maintenance dose: Take 200–400mg twice per day. Your doctor may increase your dose slowly every 2-3 days if needed.
Maximum dosage: Take 2,400mg per day in 2–3 divided doses.

Children (0 to 17 years):

Avoid use of this drug in children below 18 years of age, as the studies have not been established yet.

Geriatric (65 years and older):

The typical maintenance dosage is 100–200mg twice per day.

Most common questions asked about Labetalol / Q&A’s:

Does Labetalol lower heart rate?

Yes, labetalol belongs to a class of medications called beta blockers, and it works by relaxing blood vessels and lowering heart rate to improve blood flow and reduces blood pressure.

Disclaimer

TheMedPharma has made every effort to make sure that all the information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up-to-date. However, this website should not be considered as a substitute for the advice, knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or licensed health care professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subjected to changes if required. The lack of warnings or other information for a given drug does not mean that the drug or its combination is safe, effective or appropriate for use in all patients.