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It's the coffee obsession.



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Originally Posted by Pogorelich.
It's the coffee obsession.

That was all?

Don't worry Pogo, you're more than safe. grin

Among other reasons because if they banned coffee, coffee ice cream would also probably be out.

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Originally Posted by Pogorelich.
Originally Posted by Mark_C
Originally Posted by Pogorelich.
Actually this thread has given me the idea of trying beta blockers. You need a prescription for them, yes?

I pretty much assumed you were using them and that's why you were being so.....how you were being. ha

Yes, you need a prescription, at least in the U.S.



No, I've just always been curious. I think it's time to satisfy that curiosity (and since I'm not a cat, that's not dangerous wink )


I would advise you not to take beta blockers unless there is a convincing medical reason for doing so. These drugs can have negative side effects. I know from the recordings that you have posted of your playing that you are a terrific pianist. These recordings are great testaments to what you are capable of achieving without performance enhancing drugs. Why take unnecessary risks with your health if you do not have to?

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Drugs seem to be a major part of our culture now. . . . as an aside, how much music do we play which has been written under the influence? Of drink, or other drugs known about years ago but not heard of now?

You`d have to delve into the records, because you can`t ask Beethoven or Mozart what they were on, either when compoasing, or when performing. Rumour has it that things happened.

You don`t have to be drugged up to appreciate or perform Hendrix or The Beatles . . .or anything else for that matter. But some might say it helps! Certainly a pint or two lubricates the fingers and the brain. I think I play better, but I can`t speak for everybody who listens . . .


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Originally Posted by Otis S
Originally Posted by Pogorelich.
Originally Posted by Mark_C
Originally Posted by Pogorelich.
Actually this thread has given me the idea of trying beta blockers. You need a prescription for them, yes?

I pretty much assumed you were using them and that's why you were being so.....how you were being. ha

Yes, you need a prescription, at least in the U.S.



No, I've just always been curious. I think it's time to satisfy that curiosity (and since I'm not a cat, that's not dangerous wink )


I would advise you not to take beta blockers unless there is a convincing medical reason for doing so. These drugs can have negative side effects. I know from the recordings that you have posted of your playing that you are a terrific pianist. These recordings are great testaments to what you are capable of achieving without performance enhancing drugs. Why take unnecessary risks with your health if you do not have to?


It's not as if the effects are permanent. And it's interesting that you seem to assume that the effects would be negative - is it not possible they could be positive? Certainly the large numbers of musicians who do use them seem to think so.


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Originally Posted by wr
Originally Posted by Otis S
Originally Posted by Pogorelich.
Originally Posted by Mark_C
Originally Posted by Pogorelich.
Actually this thread has given me the idea of trying beta blockers. You need a prescription for them, yes?

I pretty much assumed you were using them and that's why you were being so.....how you were being. ha

Yes, you need a prescription, at least in the U.S.



No, I've just always been curious. I think it's time to satisfy that curiosity (and since I'm not a cat, that's not dangerous wink )


I would advise you not to take beta blockers unless there is a convincing medical reason for doing so. These drugs can have negative side effects. I know from the recordings that you have posted of your playing that you are a terrific pianist. These recordings are great testaments to what you are capable of achieving without performance enhancing drugs. Why take unnecessary risks with your health if you do not have to?


It's not as if the effects are permanent. And it's interesting that you seem to assume that the effects would be negative - is it not possible they could be positive? Certainly the large numbers of musicians who do use them seem to think so.



I would tend to exercise caution in a forum such as this. Beta blockers are regulated by prescriptions, as noted by Mark_C. Therefore, one should not take them without first consulting a properly qualified physician. While there are certain people who may benefit from them, beta blockers are clearly not for everyone. Side effects for some people can be severe, such as for people with heart conditions.

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Originally Posted by Otis S
Originally Posted by wr
Originally Posted by Otis S
Originally Posted by Pogorelich.
Originally Posted by Mark_C
Originally Posted by Pogorelich.
Actually this thread has given me the idea of trying beta blockers. You need a prescription for them, yes?

I pretty much assumed you were using them and that's why you were being so.....how you were being. ha

Yes, you need a prescription, at least in the U.S.



No, I've just always been curious. I think it's time to satisfy that curiosity (and since I'm not a cat, that's not dangerous wink )


I would advise you not to take beta blockers unless there is a convincing medical reason for doing so. These drugs can have negative side effects. I know from the recordings that you have posted of your playing that you are a terrific pianist. These recordings are great testaments to what you are capable of achieving without performance enhancing drugs. Why take unnecessary risks with your health if you do not have to?


It's not as if the effects are permanent. And it's interesting that you seem to assume that the effects would be negative - is it not possible they could be positive? Certainly the large numbers of musicians who do use them seem to think so.



I would tend to exercise caution in a forum such as this. Beta blockers are regulated by prescriptions, as noted by Mark_C. Therefore, one should not take them without first consulting a properly qualified physician. While there are certain people who may benefit from them, beta blockers are clearly not for everyone. Side effects for some people can be severe, such as for people with heart conditions.


I agree. I have used beta-blockers on several occasions to help control severe hand tremors, palpitations and sweating during specific performance situations. I had a long talk beforehand with my physician who wrote me a prescription for a low dosage of propranolol. He had me experiment with the dosages (starting with 5 mg) and the time I took it before performing. He also followed up with me to see if I experienced any adverse reactions. For me 10 mg about 40 minutes before performing seems to be quite effective. As I stated in an earlier post, it did not alleviate any of the anxiety I felt, it only stopped some of the more debilitating physical symptoms. I am in very good health with no family history of coronary disease.


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Originally Posted by Otis S
Originally Posted by wr
Originally Posted by Otis S
Originally Posted by Pogorelich.
Originally Posted by Mark_C
Originally Posted by Pogorelich.
Actually this thread has given me the idea of trying beta blockers. You need a prescription for them, yes?

I pretty much assumed you were using them and that's why you were being so.....how you were being. ha

Yes, you need a prescription, at least in the U.S.



No, I've just always been curious. I think it's time to satisfy that curiosity (and since I'm not a cat, that's not dangerous wink )


I would advise you not to take beta blockers unless there is a convincing medical reason for doing so. These drugs can have negative side effects. I know from the recordings that you have posted of your playing that you are a terrific pianist. These recordings are great testaments to what you are capable of achieving without performance enhancing drugs. Why take unnecessary risks with your health if you do not have to?


It's not as if the effects are permanent. And it's interesting that you seem to assume that the effects would be negative - is it not possible they could be positive? Certainly the large numbers of musicians who do use them seem to think so.



I would tend to exercise caution in a forum such as this. Beta blockers are regulated by prescriptions, as noted by Mark_C. Therefore, one should not take them without first consulting a properly qualified physician. While there are certain people who may benefit from them, beta blockers are clearly not for everyone. Side effects for some people can be severe, such as for people with heart conditions.


Well, since the person who brought them up immediately asked about the prescription aspect and got an affirmative response, I'm kind of assuming there will be a doctor involved if she tries them. The way I read your post, the one to which I first responded, was that you were trying to discourage her from trying them at all.

But then, too, I'm the kind of person who does internet research on any medication I may take, especially to read up on any side effects, and I (probably mistakenly) think that other people do the same.

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Originally Posted by wr
....But then, too, I'm the kind of person who does internet research on any medication I may take, especially to read up on any side effects, and I (probably mistakenly) think that other people do the same.

That doesn't give anywhere near the degree of security you imply, for various reasons.

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Originally Posted by DameMyra

I agree. I have used beta-blockers on several occasions to help control severe hand tremors, palpitations and sweating during specific performance situations. I had a long talk beforehand with my physician who wrote me a prescription for a low dosage of propranolol. He had me experiment with the dosages (starting with 5 mg) and the time I took it before performing. He also followed up with me to see if I experienced any adverse reactions. For me 10 mg about 40 minutes before performing seems to be quite effective. As I stated in an earlier post, it did not alleviate any of the anxiety I felt, it only stopped some of the more debilitating physical symptoms. I am in very good health with no family history of coronary disease.


I've tried beta-blockers. The first time I used them, the placebo effect was absolutely mind-blowing. I felt like I was playing in my living room and couldn't play a wrong note. Some time later I realised that all it did was stop my hands sweating and shaking. Everything else was created in my mind. Although the placebo effect from the beta-blockers gave me a brief belief in myself, it showed me my potential. Now I need to find out how to recreate that placebo effect, a tremendous effect that cannot be found in a pill.

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What do you mean by "placebo effect"?
It seems maybe you mean something other than the usual meaning.

It sounds like maybe you mean something like that the absence of physical symptoms enabled you to play confidently, whereas with the physical symptoms, you couldn't.

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Originally Posted by NikkiPiano
Originally Posted by DameMyra

I agree. I have used beta-blockers on several occasions to help control severe hand tremors, palpitations and sweating during specific performance situations. I had a long talk beforehand with my physician who wrote me a prescription for a low dosage of propranolol. He had me experiment with the dosages (starting with 5 mg) and the time I took it before performing. He also followed up with me to see if I experienced any adverse reactions. For me 10 mg about 40 minutes before performing seems to be quite effective. As I stated in an earlier post, it did not alleviate any of the anxiety I felt, it only stopped some of the more debilitating physical symptoms. I am in very good health with no family history of coronary disease.


I've tried beta-blockers. The first time I used them, the placebo effect was absolutely mind-blowing. I felt like I was playing in my living room and couldn't play a wrong note. Some time later I realised that all it did was stop my hands sweating and shaking. Everything else was created in my mind. Although the placebo effect from the beta-blockers gave me a brief belief in myself, it showed me my potential. Now I need to find out how to recreate that placebo effect, a tremendous effect that cannot be found in a pill.

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Originally Posted by Mark_C
What do you mean by "placebo effect"?
It seems maybe you mean something other than the usual meaning.

It sounds like maybe you mean something like that the absence of physical symptoms enabled you to play confidently, whereas with the physical symptoms, you couldn't.


My state of mind was completely free of anxiety. My hands felt detached from my body and it felt like they were playing by themselves. But this state of mind was created all by myself, not by the BB, because I believed the BB would relieve me of all anxiety. The BBs now do nothing except prevent hands trembling and sweating. I still suffer anxiety when I use them.

I invented a drug in my head that gave me the effect of playing by myself when in fact I was playing to an audience. That's what I find mindblowing. I can do it.

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That doesn't make any sense.. a placebo effect only occurs when the in-taker isn't aware that the pill is fake. You knew what you were taking, and of course you believed the BB would relieve of some anxiety, because you were in fact taking the pill. So what you experienced is actually the effect of the drug itself, not a placebo effect - that is something completely different.



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I think what NikkiPiano means is (and I could be wrong, so please correct me) beta-blockers do not decrease anxiety, say like a tranquilizer, but NP thought they did. So after taking them NP felt less anxiety. This is, in this case, a placebo effect, since there was an observable, or felt improvement in health or behavior not "specifically attributable" to the beta-blocker.



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Originally Posted by DameMyra
I think what NikkiPiano means is (and I could be wrong, so please correct me) beta-blockers do not decrease anxiety, say like a tranquilizer, but NP thought they did. So after taking them NP felt less anxiety. This is, in this case, a placebo effect, since there was an observable, or felt improvement in health or behavior not "specifically attributable" to the beta-blocker.



Thank you. Exactly. The BB wasn't fake. I simply presumed it would do more for my anxiety than it does. The first time I took a BB was amazing. The second time, the anxiety relieving properties decreased drastically. The third time, nothing. I sussed I was doing the anxiety relieving all by myself. BB do nothing for relieving mental anxiety.

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BB relieves/reduces symptoms of anxiety & 'nerves' - 'palpitations' (more correctly fast heart rate), trembling, shaking, sweating, stomach churning, diarrhoea etc.

But you still feel like you're anxious in your mind, just that you don't exhibit outward symptoms of it (or at least, they're better controlled, assuming you're on a high enough dose).


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Originally Posted by Pogorelich.
That doesn't make any sense.. a placebo effect only occurs when the in-taker isn't aware that the pill is fake. You knew what you were taking, and of course you believed the BB would relieve of some anxiety, because you were in fact taking the pill. So what you experienced is actually the effect of the drug itself, not a placebo effect - that is something completely different.
If someone believes a pill can do something, then sometimes that something occurs even if it's not due to the pill. The placebo effect doesn't only refer to situations where the pill is fake and the user doesn't know this.

There was a pretty lengthy article in the NY Times recently saying that some doctors have decided to not tell patients all possible minor side effects of some drugs because studies have shown that once told about side effects patients can be more like to experience them. The article specifically called this an example of the placebo effect.

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From Wiki:

Adverse effects

Adverse drug reactions (ADRs) associated with the use of beta blockers include: nausea, diarrhea, bronchospasm, dyspnea, cold extremities, exacerbation of Raynaud's syndrome, bradycardia, hypotension, heart failure, heart block, fatigue, dizziness, alopecia (hair loss), abnormal vision, hallucinations, insomnia, nightmares, sexual dysfunction, erectile dysfunction and/or alteration of glucose and lipid metabolism. Mixed α1/β-antagonist therapy is also commonly associated with orthostatic hypotension. Carvedilol therapy is commonly associated with edema.[22] Due to the high penetration across the blood–brain barrier, lipophilic beta blockers, such as propranolol and metoprolol, are more likely than other, less lipophilic, beta blockers to cause sleep disturbances, such as insomnia and vivid dreams and nightmares.[23]

Adverse effects associated with β2-adrenergic receptor antagonist activity (bronchospasm, peripheral vasoconstriction, alteration of glucose and lipid metabolism) are less common with β1-selective (often termed "cardioselective") agents, however receptor selectivity diminishes at higher doses. Beta blockade, especially of the beta-1 receptor at the macula densa, inhibits renin release, thus decreasing the release of aldosterone. This causes hyponatremia and hyperkalemia.

Hypoglycemia can occur with beta blockade because β2-adrenoceptors normally stimulate hepatic glycogen breakdown (glycogenolysis) and pancreatic release of glucagon, which work together to increase plasma glucose. Therefore, blocking β2-adrenoceptors lowers plasma glucose. β1-blockers have fewer metabolic side effects in diabetic patients; however, the tachycardia which serves as a warning sign for insulin-induced hypoglycemia may be masked. Therefore, beta blockers are to be used cautiously in diabetics. [24]

A 2007 study revealed diuretics and beta blockers used for hypertension increase a patient's risk of developing diabetes, while ACE inhibitors and angiotensin II receptor antagonists (angiotensin receptor blockers) actually decrease the risk of diabetes.[25] Clinical guidelines in Great Britain, but not in the United States, call for avoiding diuretics and beta blockers as first-line treatment of hypertension due to the risk of diabetes.[26]

Beta blockers must not be used in the treatment of cocaine, amphetamine, or other alpha-adrenergic stimulant overdose. The blockade of only beta receptors increases hypertension, reduces coronary blood flow, left ventricular function, and cardiac output and tissue perfusion by means of leaving the alpha-adrenergic system stimulation unopposed.[27] The appropriate antihypertensive drugs to administer during hypertensive crisis resulting from stimulant abuse are vasodilators such as nitroglycerin, diuretics such as furosemide and alpha blockers such as phentolamine.[28]

If you are going to take them, be informaed (refuses to give personal opinion.)


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Originally Posted by BeccaBb
From Wiki:

Adverse effects

Adverse drug reactions (ADRs) associated with the use of beta blockers include: nausea, diarrhea, bronchospasm, dyspnea, cold extremities, exacerbation of Raynaud's syndrome, bradycardia, hypotension, heart failure, heart block, fatigue, dizziness, alopecia (hair loss), abnormal vision, hallucinations, insomnia, nightmares, sexual dysfunction, erectile dysfunction and/or alteration of glucose and lipid metabolism. Mixed α1/β-antagonist therapy is also commonly associated with orthostatic hypotension. Carvedilol therapy is commonly associated with edema.[22] Due to the high penetration across the blood–brain barrier, lipophilic beta blockers, such as propranolol and metoprolol, are more likely than other, less lipophilic, beta blockers to cause sleep disturbances, such as insomnia and vivid dreams and nightmares.[23]
All drugs including aspirin or caffeine have a long list of possible side effects. It's always a question of balancing the potential pros and cons. The lists of side effects like the ones you quoted or on drug packaging includes ones that are extremely rare.

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