How Do Beta Blockers Work? (Selective and Nonselective)


Beta-blockers are most commonly used to treat hypertension … but did you know there are many more reasons they are used? Nurses and healthcare providers need to be aware of the uses, the side effects, patient teaching, clinical considerations, and special uses of beta-blockers in conditions from anxiety to glaucoma to ventricular tachycardia. Beta-blockers have a lot to offer.

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Time Stamps

00:00 introduction to Beta Blockers
00:37 What is the difference between beta-blockers?
01:35 What Beta Blockers Prevent in the Body
02:00 Fight or Flight Response
02:25 Norepinephrine and Epinephrine (Noradrenaline and Adrenaline)
03:54 Cardiac output = heart rate x stroke volume
05:11 Who is prescribed a beta-blocker
05:52 How to identify a beta-blocker ~LOL
06:29 Beta 1 and beta 2 blockers – how to identify the difference
09:22 Side effects of beta-blockers
11:06 3 really really important clinical considerations of beta-blockers
13:11 Special considerations for beta-blockers, NCLEX tips
14:50 Patient teaching about beta-blockers
16:20 NCLEX question and review

In this video, we cover the need to know content for nurses caring for patients on beta-blockers or newly prescribed beta-blockers. An exploration into tips to help remember the difference between beta 1 (selective) and beta 2 (nonselective) beta blockers will help you quickly identify how your patient’s medications are working for them and could be potentially the cause of some of their symptoms.

Recall that hypertension is a silent killer and people do not have symptoms. The moment we start treating it, the pharmacological interventions we use will have side effects, and encouragement and education will be key in keeping your patients on track to reduce the risk of cardiac death.

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