GENERIC NAME: nadolol
BRAND NAMES: Corgard
DRUG CLASS AND MECHANISM: Nadolol is a member of a class of drugs called beta-adrenergic receptor blockers that is used for treating high blood pressure and heart pain (angina). Examples of other beta-adrenergic blockers include propanolol (Inderal, Inderal LA), atenolol (Tenormin), and timolol (Blocadren). Norepinephrine and epinephrine (adrenaline) are chemicals released within the body that attach to receptors on several types of cells, including nerves and some muscles, and changes the way the cells function, either stimulating the cells or suppressing them. Nadolol prevents norepinephrine and epinephrine from binding to beta receptors on nerves. By blocking the effect of norepinephrine and epinephrine, beta blockers reduce heart rate, reduce the force of the heart's contractions, and reduce blood pressure by relaxing the muscles surrounding the blood vessels.
Heart pain (angina) occurs when the workload of the heart requires more oxygen than the blood can supply. By slowing the heart rate and decreasing the force of contractions of the heart, nadolol reduces the demand of the heart's muscle for oxygen and thereby prevents angina. Beta blockers may cause difficulty breathing since they cause the muscles surrounding the air passages of the lung to contract, thus narrowing the air passages and making it more difficult for air to pass through . The FDA approved nadolol in 1979.
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