Beta blockers are a type of drug used to treat high blood pressure.
Beta blocker overdose occurs when someone accidentally or intentionally takes more than the normal or recommended amount of this medication.
This is for information only and not for use in the treatment or management of an actual poison exposure. If you have an exposure, you should call your local emergency number (such as 911) or the National Poison Control Center at 1-800-222-1222.
The specific ingredient in such drugs varies among manufacturers. The main ingredient is a beta-adrenergic blocking substance. It blocks the effects of a hormone called epinephrine on the body. Epinephrine is also called adrenaline.
Prescription beta blockers are sold under various names, including:
Note: This list may not be all-inclusive.
Low blood sugar is common in children with this type of overdose, and can lead to nervous system symptoms.
Do NOT make the person throw up unless told to do so by poison control or a doctor.
Determine the following information:
The National Poison Control Center (1-800-222-1222) can be called from anywhere in the United States. This national hotline number will let you talk to experts in poisoning. They will give you further instructions.
This is a free and confidential service. All local poison control centers in the United States use this national number. You should call if you have any questions about poisoning or poison prevention. It does NOT need to be an emergency. You can call for any reason, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Take the container with you to the hospital, if possible.
See: Poison control center - emergency number
The health care provider will measure and monitor the patient's vital signs, including temperature, pulse, breathing rate, and blood pressure. Symptoms will be treated as appropriate. The patient may receive:
Most patients are admitted to the hospital. Death may follow low blood pressure or heart rhythm disturbances (arrhythmias).