Metoprolol (Lopressor®) is a medication that lowers your blood pressure and heart rate, making it easier for your heart to pump blood to the rest of your body. It treats high blood pressure. It also prevents chest pain or further damage after a heart attack. It’s a type of beta-blocker.


What is this medication?

METOPROLOL (me TOE proe lole) treats high blood pressure. It also prevents chest pain (angina) or further damage after a heart attack. It works by lowering your blood pressure and heart rate, making it easier for your heart to pump blood to the rest of your body. It belongs to a group of medications called beta blockers.

This medicine may be used for other purposes; ask your health care provider or pharmacist if you have questions.



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What should I tell my care team before I take this medication?

They need to know if you have any of these conditions:

  • Diabetes
  • Heart or vessel disease like slow heart rate, worsening heart failure, heart block, sick sinus syndrome, or Raynaud's disease
  • Kidney disease
  • Liver disease
  • Lung or breathing disease, like asthma or emphysema
  • Pheochromocytoma
  • Thyroid disease
  • An unusual or allergic reaction to metoprolol, other beta blockers, medications, foods, dyes, or preservatives
  • Pregnant or trying to get pregnant
  • Breast-feeding

How should I use this medication?

Take this medication by mouth with water. Take it as directed on the prescription label at the same time every day. You can take it with or without food. You should always take it the same way. Keep taking it unless your care team tells you to stop.

Talk to your care team about the use of this medication in children. Special care may be needed.

Overdosage: If you think you have taken too much of this medicine contact a poison control center or emergency room at once.

NOTE: This medicine is only for you. Do not share this medicine with others.


What if I miss a dose?

If you miss a dose, take it as soon as you can. If it is almost time for your next dose, take only that dose. Do not take double or extra doses.

What may interact with this medication?

This medication may interact with the following:

  • Certain medications for blood pressure, heart disease, irregular heartbeat
  • Certain medications for depression like monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors, fluoxetine, or paroxetine
  • Clonidine
  • Dobutamine
  • Epinephrine
  • Isoproterenol
  • Reserpine

This list may not describe all possible interactions. Give your health care provider a list of all the medicines, herbs, non-prescription drugs, or dietary supplements you use. Also tell them if you smoke, drink alcohol, or use illegal drugs. Some items may interact with your medicine.


What should I watch for while using this medication?

Visit your care team for regular checks on your progress. Check your blood pressure as directed. Ask your care team what your blood pressure should be. Also, find out when you should contact them.

Do not treat yourself for coughs, colds, or pain while you are using this medication without asking your care team for advice. Some medications may increase your blood pressure.

You may get drowsy or dizzy. Do not drive, use machinery, or do anything that needs mental alertness until you know how this medication affects you. Do not stand up or sit up quickly, especially if you are an older patient. This reduces the risk of dizzy or fainting spells. Alcohol may interfere with the effect of this medication. Avoid alcoholic drinks.

This medication may increase blood sugar. Ask your care team if changes in diet or medications are needed if you have diabetes.

What side effects may I notice from receiving this medication?

Side effects that you should report to your care team as soon as possible:

  • Allergic reactions—skin rash, itching, hives, swelling of the face, lips, tongue, or throat
  • Heart failure—shortness of breath, swelling of the ankles, feet, or hands, sudden weight gain, unusual weakness or fatigue
  • Low blood pressure—dizziness, feeling faint or lightheaded, blurry vision
  • Raynaud's—cool, numb, or painful fingers or toes that may change color from pale, to blue, to red
  • Slow heartbeat—dizziness, feeling faint or lightheaded, confusion, trouble breathing, unusual weakness or fatigue
  • Worsening mood, feelings of depression

Side effects that usually do not require medical attention (report to your care team if they continue or are bothersome):

  • Change in sex drive or performance
  • Diarrhea
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Headache

This list may not describe all possible side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Where should I keep my medication?

Keep out of the reach of children and pets.

Store at room temperature between 15 and 30 degrees C (59 and 86 degrees F). Protect from moisture. Keep the container tightly closed. Throw away any unused medication after the expiration date.

NOTE: This sheet is a summary. It may not cover all possible information. If you have questions about this medicine, talk to your doctor, pharmacist, or health care provider.

Additional Common Questions

Should I take metoprolol in the morning or at night?

It depends on whether you’re taking it once or twice a day. If you’re taking metoprolol (not the extended-release kind) twice a day, you may take it with food in the morning and at night.

Because metoprolol may make you dizzy, your healthcare provider may suggest taking your first dose in the evening before you go to bed. If it doesn’t make you feel dizzy, you can take it in the morning instead.

Does metoprolol cause weight gain?

Rarely, people have reported weight gain as a side effect of taking metoprolol. But researchers haven’t proven that taking metoprolol causes weight gain.

How long does metoprolol stay in your system?

Half of a metoprolol dose is still in your body three to four hours after taking it. That means it takes more than 16 hours to get it out of your system. The long-acting or extended-release dose lasts up to 24 hours.

How long does it take metoprolol to work?

Metoprolol starts working within an hour or two of taking it.

A note from Cleveland Clinic

You’re not alone in taking metoprolol for high blood pressure or other heart issues. If your healthcare provider has prescribed this beta-blocker for you, it’s important to keep taking it according to their instructions. Be sure to ask your provider any questions you have about metoprolol. You can set an alarm on your phone to remind yourself to take it consistently.

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Note: Introduction and Additional Common Questions written and medically approved by Cleveland Clinic professionals.

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