Sep 27, 2022




Metoprolol Tartrate vs. Metoprolol Succinate

cardiovascular disease

According to the American Heart Association, around 121.5 million adults in the United States have some form of cardiovascular disease (CVD). Also referred to as heart disease, CVD is a term used to describe conditions affecting the heart or blood vessels. 

If you suffer or have suffered from certain heart conditions such as a heart attack, high blood pressure (hypertension), or chest pain (angina), your physician may recommend a beta-blocker as a part of your treatment plan. 

The two most common beta blockers prescribed are metoprolol tartrate(Lopressor) and succinate (Toprol XL). So what are the biggest differences between these two? Which one is the best to take for your particular heart condition?

We put together this guide to help!

Who is at risk for heart disease?

Depending on the condition, there are many risk factors when it comes to heart disease. However, some of the top risk factors for developing a form of heart disease include:

Overview of beta blockers

Beta-blockers, or beta-adrenergic blocking agents, are a class of medications that slow down certain types of cell activity and help blood vessels relax and widen. Sometimes, they also treat conditions related to the brain and nervous system, such as helping to shrink vascular tumors

Metoprolol tartrate vs. metoprolol succinate

While metoprolol tartrate and succinate are in the same class of medicines and thus share similarities, they also have some differences.

Conditions treated

Both medications are used to lower blood pressure and alleviate chest pain in people with heart disease. 

Metoprolol tartrate is a treatment option to lower the risk of death or another heart attack immediately following a heart attack. It's also used to reduce the risk of a heart attack in those suffering from heart disease. 

In addition, metoprolol tartrate is used as an off-label medication for preventing migraines and treating certain arrhythmias. 

In contrast, metoprolol succinate shouldn't be given to prevent a heart attack

Forms and dosage 

Metoprolol tartrate is available in tablet form with the strengths:

  • 25 mg

  • 37.5 mg

  • 50 mg

  • 75 mg

  • 100 mg

Metoprolol succinate is available in an extended relief (ER) tablet with the form strengths: 

  • 25 mg

  • 50 mg

  • 100 mg

  • 200 mg

Since succinate is an extended-release medication, its active ingredient is released slowly over time into the body. Therefore you only need to take it once daily, with or without food. 

Metoprolol tartrate is often prescribed to take several times a day with or right after a meal. An intravenous injection (IV) form is available for this drug, but it should only be given in a healthcare environment. 

Many people start either medication at a lower dose and increase it to get to the amount that works best for them. Always follow your physician's orders and never increase/decrease/or stop taking medicine without consulting them first. 

Side effects

While beta-blockers are safe and effective medications, they can cause adverse effects like other drugs. 

Common side effects of metoprolol tartrate and succinate include:

  • Fatigue

  • Dizziness

  • Diarrhea

  • Constipation

  • Decreased heart rate

  • Wheezing/shortness of breath

  • Loss of libido

You should seek medical attention immediately if you are having an allergic reaction (hives, fever, itching, or anaphylaxis).


Both medications are available in most pharmacies nationwide. The cost will depend on your health insurance drug coverage. Many plans will cover much of the costs of the generic versions of beta-blockers. 

If you don't have drug coverage or want to compare the costs of metoprolol tartrate and metoprolol succinate ER (Toprol XR), use for a pharmacy discount card.

Which is a better medication for me, metoprolol tartrate or succinate ER?

These medications are different kinds of salts of the same active ingredient, metoprolol. While they share many similarities, they do have different uses.

Both are effective in treating people with high blood pressure and chest pain. However, metoprolol tartrate is prescribed for people who have had a heart attack and succinate in those with congestive heart failure (CHF)

While succinate ER is an extended-release medication taken daily, whereas tartrate is often taken multiple times a day, only your healthcare provider can help you decide which drug is right for you.

It's critical to always discuss your current medications as well as your health history with your doctor. You should also know which form of metoprolol you take because you cannot substitute one for the other. 

At CareCard, we are passionate about helping make your prescription payments more affordable, helping you save up to 85% on prescription drugs and medications. Learn how CareCard can help make your medication payments more manageable.


Can I switch between Metoprolol Tartrate and Succinate without consulting my doctor?

No, you should never switch between these medications without your doctor's guidance. They have different uses and release mechanisms, and a sudden change could impact your treatment effectiveness.

Are there lifestyle changes that can complement the use of Metoprolol for heart conditions?

Yes, adopting a heart-healthy lifestyle is crucial. Include regular exercise, a balanced diet, quitting smoking, and managing stress to enhance the effectiveness of Metoprolol in managing heart conditions.

Can I use a pharmacy discount card like CareCard for both Metoprolol Tartrate and Succinate?

Yes, CareCard provides pharmacy discount cards that can be used for both Metoprolol Tartrate and Succinate, helping you save on prescription costs.

What should I do if I experience side effects from Metoprolol?

If you experience severe side effects or allergic reactions such as hives or difficulty breathing, seek immediate medical attention. For less severe side effects, consult your healthcare provider to discuss potential adjustments to your medication.

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Pharmacy names, logos, brands, and other trademarks are the property of their respective owners. Prescription savings may vary by prescription and by pharmacy, and in some cases may be discounted up to 85% off cash price*. Please note, this is NOT insurance. CareCard offers you the opportunity to find prescription discount prices, which ultimately depend on the provider. You are fully responsible for paying for all health care services but will be entitled to receive a discount from those health care providers in accordance with the specific pre-negotiated discounted rates. CareCard Inc. is not sponsored by or affiliated with any of the pharmacies identified in its price comparisons. This information is not mean to be a substitute for professional medical advice, treatment, or diagnosis. For additional information, please reach our customer support at 1-866-410-1217, Mon- Friday 9am – 5pm Est or email us at By using the CareCard prescription discount card or service, you are agreeing to CareCard’s Terms of Service.

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