Beta-blockers act by decreasing the heart rate of the patient. Why is this response decreased in the elderly?

  • 6
    What's your reference for this claim? Jan 28, 2018 at 19:04
  • "Elderly patients may be more sensitive to the blood pressure-lowering effects of beta-blockers than younger patients, and may therefore require lower doses.", according to academic.oup.com/eurheartjsupp/article/11/suppl_A/A21/…
    – Nate
    Jan 29, 2018 at 13:22
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    @Nate Right, but the question is about rate, not pressure, and a reduced effect of beta blockers rather than increased.
    – Carey Gregory
    Jan 29, 2018 at 18:11
  • 3
    @Nate You are right that the question starts with a false premise; the OP needs to put his research in his stem to show us what he's referring to. But "The way that beta blockers lower blood pressure is through lowering the heart rate." isn't quite accurate either; they have multiple effects on decreasing overall contractility including inotropy (force) and chronotropy (rate).
    – DoctorWhom
    Jan 30, 2018 at 1:36
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    @Nate Not entirely true. BBs also reduce contractility and some relax arteries. For example, I've seen metoprolol drop BP substantially without lowering HR at all in SVT.
    – Carey Gregory
    Jan 30, 2018 at 21:50


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