Precautions and Warnings With Metoprolol Succinate
Specific Metoprolol Succinate Precautions and WarningsWarnings and precautions to be aware of prior to taking metoprolol succinate include the following:
- Metoprolol succinate can interact with certain other medications (see Drug Interactions With Metoprolol Succinate).
- Metoprolol succinate may hide certain signs of hyperthyroidism. Do not abruptly stop taking it, as this can cause serious symptoms of hyperthyroidism to appear suddenly and severely. Make sure to talk with your healthcare provider before stopping the drug so that it can be done in a safe manner.
- This medication may cause extreme low blood pressure and/or a slow heart rate in some people. Symptoms can include dizziness, lightheadedness, and fainting. If you develop any of these symptoms, contact your healthcare provider. Extreme low blood pressure is more likely to occur in people who are taking a diuretic, who are on dialysis, or who have diarrhea or vomiting.
Also, make sure not to drive, operate any heavy machinery, or perform any other tasks that require alertness before you know how metoprolol succinate affects you.
- Using beta blockers such as metoprolol succinate for a long time can, in some cases, lead to heart failure. If you notice any of the following symptoms, contact your healthcare provider:
- Unexplained weight gain
- Swelling of the ankles, feet, or legs
- Shortness of breath (see Symptoms of Congestive Heart Failure).
- People who have severe congestive heart failure and are taking metoprolol succinate are at an increased risk of the condition becoming worse. This occurs more often when the dose is increased. Therefore, if you have severe congestive heart failure and your healthcare provider prescribes this drug, it is because he or she believes that the benefits outweigh the potential risks. Your healthcare provider may choose to monitor your situation more closely, especially during dosage changes. Contact your healthcare provider if you notice any congestive heart failure symptoms during treatment.
- People on metoprolol succinate should not abruptly stop taking the medicine. In previous clinical studies, this has been shown to increase a person's chances of developing angina (chest pain), a heart attack, or serious irregular heart rhythms (arrhythmias). This risk is even greater in people with existing heart disease.
- Beta blockers, including metoprolol succinate, are used with caution (if at all) in people with certain lung diseases, such as asthma, emphysema, chronic bronchitis, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). This is because beta blockers affect the lungs and can cause a narrowing of the airways. This risk is greater for people who have certain lung diseases. If you develop problems breathing or experience wheezing while taking this drug, call your healthcare provider.
- For people who have allergies, metoprolol succinate may increase the reaction to the specific allergens, and the body may not respond to the usual doses of epinephrine.
- If you are going to have surgery, let your healthcare provider or dentist know that you are taking metoprolol succinate.
- Metoprolol succinate is a pregnancy Category C medicine, which means there may be an increased risk to the fetus if the medicine is taken during pregnancy. Prior to taking this drug, let your healthcare provider know if you are pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant. If you become pregnant while taking it, contact your healthcare provider (see Toprol-XL and Pregnancy for more information).
- This medication passes through breast milk. Therefore, if you are nursing and taking metoprolol succinate, talk with your healthcare provider about your particular situation (see Metoprolol and Breastfeeding).