Each patient is given an individualized atenolol dosage depending on a number of factors that include the patient’s age, medical condition being treated, other underlying medical conditions, and other medications currently taken.
For this medication to work effectively, you have to use it exactly as directed by your healthcare provider. The information below includes only the usual doses of atenolol, as prescribed by physicians. If you are given a totally different dose, do not adjust or change it unless your healthcare provider tells you to do so.
Treatment of Hypertension (High Blood Pressure)
The usual initial dose of atenolol (Tenormin) for adult patients with hypertension is 50 mg taken once a day. The maintenance dose may be adjusted after a couple of weeks. Depending on the patient’s response to the treatment (such as average blood pressure and possible side effects), the atenolol dosage may be increased or decreased. Your healthcare provider may also recommend additional antihypertensive medications, such as alpha-methyldopa, hydralazine, prazosin and thiazide-type diuretics, along with atenolol. This is especially true in cases where blood pressure is not well managed by taking atenolol alone.
The daily dose of atenolol for management of high blood pressure must not exceed 100 mg. Taking doses higher than the recommended maximum does not appear to be more effective.
Treatment of Angina (Chest Pain)
The usual initial dose of atenolol for adult patients with chest pain is 50 mg taken once a day. The maintenance dose may be adjusted after a week. Depending on the patient’s response to the treatment, the atenolol dosage may be increased or decreased.
The daily dose of atenolol for treatment of chest pain must not exceed 200 mg.
Management of Acute Myocardial Infarction (Heart Attack)
Patients suspected or diagnosed with acute myocardial infarction must be given atenolol I.V. injection as soon as possible, usually upon arrival in the hospital. Atenolol 5 mg should be given through intravenous route over 5 minutes then followed by another dose of 5 mg IV injection after 10 minutes. Blood pressure, heart rate and heart rhythm must be monitored throughout the treatment.
After the initial doses of atenolol I.V., your healthcare provider may shift the medication to oral dose. Thereafter, atenolol may be taken continuously throughout hospitalization and until discharge. The maintenance doses can either be 50 mg taken twice a day or 100 mg taken once a day but can also vary depending on your medical condition. In case of side effects such as abnormally slow heart rate or low blood pressure, the dose may be adjusted or discontinued.
Use in Special Populations
Pediatric use and dosage of atenolol must be determined by your healthcare provider.
Since atenolol is excreted by the kidneys, elderly patients or patients with kidney problems may be given a lower starting dose. In general, caution must be taken when prescribing atenolol in patients with severe renal impairment.
Patients with other concomitant diseases or currently taking other medications may be given adjusted doses of atenolol.