New questions raised about beta-blockers

I don’t care if you’re a man or a woman… young or old… when you’re being wheeled into surgery, every patient has the same fear: What if something goes wrong?

You’re counting on your surgeon’s hands to be steady, and for your nursing team to watch your vital signs closely.

But believe it or not, whether you’re going to survive surgery or not may be determined long before your surgeon makes his first cut.

New research out of Denmark has found that taking beta blockers for blood pressure control can send your risk of dying after an operation through the roof.

For their study, just published in JAMA Internal Medicine, researchers reviewed the health records of more than 55,000 people with high blood pressure who underwent non-cardiac surgeries.

Within a month, those on beta blockers had nearly twice the risk of suffering from a major cardiovascular event — such as a heart attack — or death.

Believe it or not, it used to be pretty well known that beta blockers can cause potentially life-threatening surgical complications. But many doctors now let patients stay on beta-blockers based on a trial called DECREASE years back that found there was no serious risk.

Well, those doctors may want to update their medical journal subscriptions. Because it turned out that the data in that trial was falsified and the study was withdrawn.

That’s right — some doctors are basing their recommendations on research that’s completely outdated.

I’ve warned you before that, in many cases, high blood pressure doesn’t need to be treated at all. Guidelines have been lowered time and time again over the years in a push to sell more drugs.

If you’re taking any blood pressure medication – specifically beta-blockers – you should always get a second opinion from a qualified alternative health doctor to see if you really need them.

But especially if you’re taking beta blockers, you need to have a talk with your doctor about at least switching drugs before you agree to any surgery. Because when you’re lying an operating room, the last thing you need to worry about is another thing that could go wrong.

Wishing you the best of health,

Dr. Glenn S. Rothfeld
Editor
Nutrition & Healing
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Sources:

New questions on perioperative beta-blockers, medpagetoday.com

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