Beta blockers are drugs that keep the body from absorbing and getting the effects of epinephrine, also known as adrenaline. Some of the effects of epinephrine include:
- Making the heart beat faster and making each beat stronger
- Opening the airways in the lungs
- Increasing blood sugar
In patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), beta blockers can reduce the number of flare-ups and make them less severe when they do happen. These drugs may work especially well for COPD patients who also have cardiovascular disease.