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Is This A Symptom Of High Blood Pressure?

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
I noticed that before my doc put me on high blood pressure medication, I would get a 'light-headed' feeling that would come & go. After she put me on it, the feeling pretty much faded and became a lot less frequent. But the past few days, I noticed the light-headedness returning. I'm thinking that my body has become more immune to the meds she put me on, and I probably need a higher dosage. Does anyone have any opinions or advice about this?


~KK~
post #2 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by KittKatt View Post
I noticed that before my doc put me on high blood pressure medication, I would get a 'light-headed' feeling that would come & go. After she put me on it, the feeling pretty much faded and became a lot less frequent. But the past few days, I noticed the light-headedness returning. I'm thinking that my body has become more immune to the meds she put me on, and I probably need a higher dosage. Does anyone have any opinions or advice about this?


~KK~
I'm not a nurse, but I'm sure someone in the field will answer you. My husband takes meds for high blood pressure. He doesn't have any symptoms. Do you check your blood pressure regularly?
post #3 of 20
Go get yourself a blood pressure cuff. Don't play "Is it high today?" by symptoms alone - some people have none when even when it's near dangerously high. That you're on medication should have you concerned enough to be monitoring it already.

Ok, little lecture aside. Light headedness is such a vague symptom that I doubt anyone could tell you. It is my most frequent symptom from low blood pressure and postural hypotension - for example. It's also one of the symptoms that you can get if you're dehydrated from being out in the heat and not drinking enough, something everyone faces this time of year.

Get a cuff, keep a journal of readings, and call your doctor to discuss how you've been feeling lately.
post #4 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by strange_wings View Post
It is my most frequent symptom from low blood pressure and postural hypotension Get a cuff, keep a journal of readings, and call your doctor to discuss how you've been feeling lately.
My thoughts exactly
post #5 of 20
Getting a cuff is very important, but until you do, if you check at local stores, remember their equipment may not be calibrated correctly. You can get a false reading. I don't know about where you live, but in Florida, you can stop at any fire department anytime and they will check it for free!
post #6 of 20
Most people don't have any symptoms and don't know that they have high blood pressure.

However, it is possible to experience vomiting, blurred vision, headaches and dizziness.

When I was diagnosed with high blood pressure I already knew it was high based on how I was feeling. I made an appointment to see my doctor when I started to feel like my head was going to explode because the pressure that I was feeling inside my head felt enormous.
post #7 of 20
Good advice above -- but also, remember that low blood pressure can be dangerous, too, and light-headedness can also indicate that.

Find out for certain what your reading is, and how it's running at various times of day over a period of at least a few days. Also remember that the guidelines have changed, and they now consider blood pressure to be high at a lower level than they used to -- especially if you're diabetic.

Take care of yourself, hon. They don't call hypertension "the silent killer" for nothing!
post #8 of 20
^ For the most part, the symptoms of low blood pressure will be very profound and hard to miss - and unless the person is going into shock it's not as dangerous. You'll faint when it drops too low.

One other thing which people usually don't mention is pulse pressure - the difference between the systolic and diastolic. If too narrow (under 18 I believe?) it's considered something you should probably go to the ER for as it can mean that a person is in circulatory shock.

Looking back through my readings I realized I have some 10's,13's, and 15's... oops.
post #9 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Natalie_ca View Post
Most people don't have any symptoms and don't know that they have high blood pressure.
before I was diagnosed, I never had any symptoms. I was at the fair and a local hospital had a booth where you could get your blood pressure checked. Well, I had mine checked and it was extremely high. The nurse who took it told me I should go to my doctor immediately since I was a stroke waiting to happen. I didn't go right away, but when I did, I was immediately put on medication which I took for over 10 years.

In 2004, I became very lax about taking it since I felt fine! In Dec that year, 5 days after my 48th birthday, I had a stroke while at work. It was a small one, but a wake up call. I am now on a different BP med twice a day and Plavix once a day. I changed doctors to the one who saw me in the hospital since my old doctor couldn't be bothered to visit me the entire 5 days I was in the hospital and never even called to see how I was doing!

But my point is, I never had any symptoms before I was diagnosed. But you should talk to your doctor about the episodes of lightheadedness.
post #10 of 20
Thanks for sharing that story. Very glad you got that "warning" stroke instead of a big one!
post #11 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by strange_wings View Post
Go get yourself a blood pressure cuff. Don't play "Is it high today?" by symptoms alone

Get a cuff, keep a journal of readings, and call your doctor to discuss how you've been feeling lately.
I think that's probably a very good idea. I'll check into how much they cost, and put it on my "things I really need to get" list.

Thanks everyone for your input & advice, and for sharing your stories. I'll definitely be having a talk with my doc, the next time I go in to see her - which is next month. I don't think it's anything to worry about just yet, but it does need attention...


~KK~
post #12 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by KittKatt View Post
I'll check into how much they cost, and put it on my "things I really need to get" list.
It depends on the brand and model. I've read of people getting cheap Costco brand ones that were reliable. I have one that's worth around $50, but would like to get an Omron one that ranges around $70 - just because it's more tolerant of weird blood pressures and arrhythmias (I have tachycardia and strongly suspect PVCs - the cuff I have now errors from it at times).

You're less likely to have weird issues like that so you shouldn't need a higher end model. Expect to pay around $50 though.
post #13 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by strange_wings View Post
It depends on the brand and model. I've read of people getting cheap Costco brand ones that were reliable. I have one that's worth around $50, but would like to get an Omron one that ranges around $70 - just because it's more tolerant of weird blood pressures and arrhythmias (I have tachycardia and strongly suspect PVCs - the cuff I have now errors from it at times).

You're less likely to have weird issues like that so you shouldn't need a higher end model. Expect to pay around $50 though.

$50 is a lot of money to us right now, but I'll check around and do some price comparisons.

StrangeWings
post #14 of 20
At the very least you could check it periodically in some stores (most any place with a pharmacy has one). It may not be calibrated just right, but you could at least track ups and downs or know if you're in a worrying level.
post #15 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Forensic View Post
At the very least you could check it periodically in some stores (most any place with a pharmacy has one). It may not be calibrated just right, but you could at least track ups and downs or know if you're in a worrying level.
I wonder how accurate those are, even if calibrated. You need to be comfortable and resting for 5 minutes to get close to an accurate reading. I don't follow those rules exactly for myself, but I don't have to worry about false high blood pressure readings (I can't even manage "normal").
If someone has been walking around in a store, especially if the store was a little warm or had just came in from outside, that could give a wrong reading - or a reading that doesn't represent what blood pressure may be at home.
post #16 of 20
If you can't afford the cuff, go to the nearest fire station. The paramedics will be happy to check your blood pressure in hopes that they will never have to make a visit to you for a stroke. Keep a record.

And have your BP checked at different times of the day. My family doctor was checking his early in the morning and at the end of the day, no problem. When he was at the dentist, in the middle of the day, they checked it and it was high. So he had it checked at various times of the day while at work - and put himself on BP meds.
post #17 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Forensic View Post
At the very least you could check it periodically in some stores (most any place with a pharmacy has one). It may not be calibrated just right, but you could at least track ups and downs or know if you're in a worrying level.
Quote:
Originally Posted by strange_wings View Post
I wonder how accurate those are, even if calibrated. You need to be comfortable and resting for 5 minutes to get close to an accurate reading. I don't follow those rules exactly for myself, but I don't have to worry about false high blood pressure readings (I can't even manage "normal").
If someone has been walking around in a store, especially if the store was a little warm or had just came in from outside, that could give a wrong reading - or a reading that doesn't represent what blood pressure may be at home.
That's a good idea. However, the only place I know of in the near vicinity is Wal-Mart...and taking my blood pressure there probably wouldn't give me an accurate reading, b/c just being in that place raises it! I used to work there, and I still have anxiety attacks every time I walk through the door..

But I think there is a drugstore in the same town, and I'm sure they probably have a machine for checking blood pressure. I'll check it out the next time we go into town..
post #18 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mom of 4 View Post
If you can't afford the cuff, go to the nearest fire station. The paramedics will be happy to check your blood pressure in hopes that they will never have to make a visit to you for a stroke.
I never would have thought of that: that's a good idea! There's a fire station about 3 miles from here; I'll check to see if they'd be willing to do something like that.
post #19 of 20
FWIW - my doctor told me the wrist/finger ones weren't at all accurate... needs to be the bicep one.

post #20 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Forensic View Post
At the very least you could check it periodically in some stores (most any place with a pharmacy has one). It may not be calibrated just right, but you could at least track ups and downs or know if you're in a worrying level.
Those don't work for me. Everytime I sit down at one, it tells me there are errors. But I do have a BP machine that I periodically use. I got it after my stroke in 2004
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