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Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Hypotension aka Low Blood Pressure

We hear so much about high blood pressure, but what about low blood pressure, or Hypotension as it is called in medical terms? The reason for my curiosity is not only prompted by my research on high blood pressure, but also because my blood pressure is usually below the normal 120/80 range.

Hypotension occurs when the Systolic and Diastolic are 90/60 and lower. Mostly athletes have a low blood pressure and for other healthy persons Hypotension is a sign of a good cardiovascular system. Chronic Hypotension which does not display any signs is hardly ever considered a serious condition.

There is reason for concern when there is a sudden drop in blood pressure, especially when it happens to an elder person. Drops can manifest themselves by dizziness when rising from a prone, or sitting position, to standing. Pregnancy, strong emotions, hardening of the arteries (atherosclerosis), or diabetes can be at the root of it as well. This type of low blood pressure is called Postural Hypotension, Orthostatic Hypotension, or Neurally Mediated Orthostatic Hypotension.

Drops can also occur due to a more serious condition like loss of blood from bleeding, low or high body temperature, heart muscle disease which causes heart failure, a severe blood infection, severe dehydration, a reaction to medication or alcohol or an allergic reaction.

Certain medications have been linked to causing low blood pressure, such as drugs which are commonly used to treat high blood pressure, like diuretics, beta-blockers, calcium-channel blockers, and angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors.

Other medications like nitrates, drugs for Parkinson's disease, antipsychotics, neuroleptics, anti-anxiety agents, sedative-hypnotics, and tricyclic antidepressants are also known to cause Hypotension.

For a healthy person, low blood pressure has no negative consequences, but it would be good to see the doctor in case one or more of the following symptoms manifest themselves: dizziness, lightheadedness or fainting, lack of concentration, blurred vision, nausea, cold clammy pale skin, breathing quick and shallow, fatigue, depression and thirst.

An extremely low blood pressure can diminish the flow of blood to the brain and other vital organs. This will lead to insufficient oxygen and nutrients which cause a shock. Don't take that too light; it can be a life threatening situation!

It is quite common that your blood pressure lowers after eating. Postprandial hypotension as this is called, mostly affects older adults and can be prevented by eating small, low-carbohydrate meals.

Now, if you think you can increase your blood pressure by eating fatty, salty food, start drinking and smoking and being a couch potato, you need a kick in the britches. No, Hypotension is no justification for adopting an unhealthy lifestyle.

You can start by drinking more water, wearing compression socks and consult your doctor if medications or increasing some of your sodium intake might be in order. A healthy diet, eating small low carb meals and taking it slow when changing your position, will all be helpful.

If you think that catering to your wants and feelings is going to make you happy, then rest assured... it will come back to bite you. No, it is no justification for allowing death to enter in to your life.

You can start by reading the Bible, digesting a healthy dose of guidance and wisdom and prayers to God may be in order. This and the following will all be helpful:

Matthew 6:33
But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.


Blogger Pia said...

hi mamu. just wanted you to know that i'm praying for you. i included you on my list so that others could also pray for you.


September 11, 2009 3:59 AM  
Blogger Corry said...

Awww, that is so sweet. Thank you so very much, girl. God bless you!


God's Grace.

September 11, 2009 7:04 PM  
Blogger truth seeker said...

I believe that low blood pressure is linked to arthritis

May 04, 2014 2:48 AM  

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