Side effects of propranolol/Inderal

My GP finally diagnosed me with MAV and started me on a dose of 10mg of Propranolol every night at bed time. I’ve been taking it since Friday. It’s made me absolutely exhausted, but from reading these forums I see it’s a pretty common side effect. Was just wondering if anyone has had strange sleep issues with it?

I’m not sure if it’s the drug or something else, but for the past 2 nights I’ve found myself having a hard time falling asleep and staying asleep. I’ll find myself being awake at night, but don’t even realize that I’m awake for a while… Does that make sense? It’s soooo weird, and because my sleep is getting disturbed I’m even MORE tired at work during the day. My doctor put me on such a low dose (10 mg), so he said I’d hardly feel any side effects. I can deal with being tired all day, since it’s a feeling I am used to… but this whole sleep disturbance thing is weirding me out.

The good thing is that knock on wood I haven’t had a migraine since I’ve been on the drug, but tiredness is one of my triggers so I’m afraid it’s going to happen eventually.

For those of you who are/were on the drug, how long were you on til you finally felt a difference?
Thanks :slight_smile:

I started at 60mg in the morning right away. I’ve been on it for 4 weeks, and this is what I’ve noticed so far.

*I can’t run actively for more than a few minutes or else I’ll become very exhausted.
*I get lightheaded very easily
*I have BPPV type symptoms only when I lay down
*Loss of appetite
*I get shortness of breath after a brief exercise
*has reduced my headaches significantly, but not so much the dizziness

Gonna give this another week before I give up. Best of luck to you

I took another beta-blocker, atenolol, and had to quit within a week. The fatigue was WAY too much. My heart rate slowed from its normal 60-70 (resting) to 50, and I could barely drag myself around.

I don’t remember having trouble sleeping.


I was on propanalol for 3 months, 40 mg reduced my daily headaches. As soon as I tried to get over 40mg I got bad insomnia and loose bowels. I still use it occasionally at 10mg to stop heart palpitations at night. 1 x 10mg tablet also helps me if I am going into a stressful situation, it calms me down.


I take propranolol, and had no negative side effects at all, other than I notice I find strenuous exercise more difficult as my heart won’t beat as fast. But I manage to run three miles a week absolutely fine, it’s things like trying to sprint up a hill that I find difficult (no big deal, as I can live without being able to do that). I have taken up to 80 mg per day with no problems. It helped with my MAV a lot, in conjunction with another drug (pizotifen) and I’ve pretty much recovered fully now :slight_smile:

I think it’s quite hard to judge tiredness etc as a side effect or not, as I found that when I was very dizzy I tended to feel very tired, even when I was on no medication at all.

i was on for about 3 weeks( 20mg), i too was tried and felt very lazy. No sleep issues but felt dizzier and gave up. I dont know if i gave up to soon. Im on periactin now trialling it for 7 weeks, if it doesnt work i go back to inderall again for another try. I had one time when i felt it hard to breathe but thats all, i had no issue coming off and think its probably got lower side effects than other drugs. keep us informed id love to know how it works out for you…

I started at a dose of 80mg of Propranolol daily and stayed on that for 5 weeks with no side effects. But I dont think I have MAV, so I am not sensitive to medication like most people with Migraine.

I’m on adifferent kind of beta blocker (metoprolol/lopressor) - When I first started taking it I was exhausted, dragging myself around etc. That did last for 4-6 weeks (although gradually improving). I did have some sleep disturbance and some nighmares (common side effect) and it did take I would say 2-3 months before I was sure they were helping - but now after a year I’d say I’m 85-90% most days and have my life back. I go to the gym 6-7 days a week and do all my normal activities. Actually paradoxically the gym really helped me get over the fatigue, once I got myself there

so for me beta blockers have been fabulous, and now I don’t have any side effects at all. Might be worth hanging in a bit longer?

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@ theogdenmancan - Oh man :frowning: I haven’t even tried to exercise on it yet, as I am so exhausted, I can’t imagine throwing a workout routine in the mix. I hope you find a medicine that works for you. Best of luck to you too!

@ Nancy - The heart rate thing isn’t too bad for me, as I’ve always had a rapid pulse… 85-95 at resting… so It’s kind of nice to be calm :wink: but this fatigue is too much. I am afraid to up my dosage, as I really have no idea how I’ll be able to function then

@ cmoc - Well It’s a relief to know that you got up to 40 until you saw side effects. When I was on topamax last year, the lowest dose possible gave me the worse s/e’s… Here’s to hoping!!

@ beechleaf - Yay I’m so happy to hear that you are better! It gives me a lot of hope. I’ve always been paranoid about trying new medicines, but this time I didn’t google the side effects at all, and only read about it on this forum. I used to go to the gym 5-6x a week but as soon as this started a month ago, I haven’t been able to go. My MAV also started around the time that I started working full-time again, so I have no idea if my tiredness is from the Inderal, or just from getting up early every morning!! I am not giving up on this drug, as I know it can take a while for your body to adjust. Plus I’d rather deal with the tiredness and sleep issues, than the stupidity and empty-headedness that I felt on topamax!!!

@ becd - Do you have any history of asthma? My doctor said that it can usually cause breathing troubles in people with the condition. I can’t tell if my tiredness is from the medicine or from not getting enough sleep/starting a new job. I’m not going to give up yet though, cos I’m afraid of going on to another drug with even worse side effects. I can deal with tiredness… and it thankfully doesn’t make me dizzier… I will definitely keep everyone updated! I am so glad this forum exists. Makes me feel so much ,less alone!

@ ichbindarren - Well it gives me hope then that the drug didn’t give you any s/e’s. I find that it also makes me a lot calmer too which helps the dizziness that I induce from anxiety!

@ lorcalon - Wow… that is so good to hear that it worked for you. I know it can take some time for these drugs to show a difference, so I’m not giving up on it yet. Glad to know that i’m not the only one experiencing fatigue. I am def going to hang on a bit longer. Before this I was on a dieuretic that caused me to sweat profusely… it was very embarrassing… I will take a little fatigue to that any ay!! Thanks so much for your input. It gives me hope… Hearing stories like that is what keeps me from digging a hole and burying myself in it. :wink:

Happening to read the PIL contained an empty box of Bedranol (Propranolol) Modified Release capsules I was surprised to read

”This product may make you more sensitive to allergens (e.g. dust, pollen and pet hair). This may lead to an anaphylactic reaction (severe reaction to allergens)”

That doesn’t appear in the PIL for the Immediate Release version that’s for sure. I’ve certainly nothing to complain about with regards to Propranolol side effects as I’ve never really had any as far as I’m aware however I’ve suffered bouts of hay fever and also I suspect some reaction to dust in recent years which never occurred before. Now I’m wondering if this could be the explanation. It wouldn’t put me off the drug because the benefits have been enormous but it’s a thought to ponder on. Unfortunately I’ve no accurate record of timings to be able to pinpoint a concrete connection.