You should talk with your healthcare provider prior to taking nadolol if you have:
- Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
- Kidney disease, such as kidney failure (renal failure)
- Heart failure
- A slow heart rate (bradycardia)
- Heart block
- An upcoming surgery
- Any allergies, including allergies to food, dyes, or preservatives.
Also, let your healthcare provider know if you are:
- Pregnant or thinking of becoming pregnant (see Nadolol and Pregnancy)
- Breastfeeding (see Nadolol and Breastfeeding).
Make sure to tell your healthcare provider about all other medicines you are taking, including prescription and non-prescription medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.
(Click Precautions and Warnings With Nadolol to learn more, including information on who should not take the drug.)
Nadolol belongs to a group of drugs called beta-adrenergic blocking agents, more often known as beta blockers. As the name implies, these medications block beta receptors in the body. Beta receptors are located in a number of places within the body, including the heart and blood vessels. Stress hormones (such as adrenaline) bind to these receptors and cause certain reactions in the body, such as:
- Increased heart rate
- Increased force with which the heart pumps blood
- Higher blood pressure (both systolic blood pressure and diastolic blood pressure)
- Constricted blood vessels.
By blocking beta receptors, nadolol causes the reverse effect of stress hormones. It decreases the heart rate, blood pressure, and the workload of the heart. This means that the heart requires less blood and oxygen to work properly.