Hypotension

Hypotension

Clinically known as hypotension, low blood pressure (LBP) may indicate signs of underlying health problems. While its common for some people to always have hypotension, severe drops in your blood pressure can deprive your body of oxygen and result in damage to vital organs. Sudden drops may be caused by heart failure, loss of blood, an allergic reaction called anaphylaxis or sepsis, a life-threatening blood infection. Doctors define a reading below 90/60 as low blood pressure. You may become dizzy or even faint if your pressure falls below this reading. As you get older, you are more likely to develop either high or low blood pressure. Medications that help treat high blood pressure may actually cause you to have low blood pressure.

Recently Answered

  • 1 Answer
    A

    Orthostatic hypotension is a sudden fall in blood pressure that occurs when a person assumes a standing position. It may be caused by hypovolemia, a decreased amount of blood in the body, resulting from the excessive use of diuretics, vasodilators, or other types of drugs; dehydration; or prolonged bed rest. The disorder may be associated with Addison's disease, atherosclerosis (build-up of fatty deposits in the arteries), diabetes, and certain neurological disorders including Shy-Drager syndrome and other dysautonomias. The symptoms that generally occur after sudden standing include dizziness, lightheadedness, blurred vision, and syncope (temporary loss of consciousness).

    This answer from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke has been reviewed and/or edited by Dr. William D. Knopf.

  • 1 Answer
    A

    When orthostatic hypotension is caused by hypovolemia due to medication, the disorder may be reversed by adjusting the dosage or discontinuing the medication. When the condition is caused by prolonged bed rest, improvement may occur by sitting up with increasing frequency each day. In some cases, physical counter-pressure such as an elastic hose or a whole-body inflatable suit may be required. Dehydration is treated with salt and fluids.

    This answer from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke has been reviewed and/or edited by Dr. William D. Knopf.

  • 1 Answer
    A

    Doctors often can successfully treat hypotension. Many people who have the disorder live normal, healthy lives.

    If you have low blood pressure, you can take steps to prevent or limit symptoms, such as dizzy spells and fainting.

    If you have orthostatic hypotension, get up slowly after sitting or lying down. Eat small, low-carbohydrate meals if you have postprandial hypotension (a form of orthostatic hypotension).

    If you have neurally mediated hypotension, don't stand for long periods. Also, drink plenty of fluids and try to avoid unpleasant or scary situations. Learn to recognize symptoms and take action to raise your blood pressure. Children who have NMH often outgrow it.

    Other lifestyle changes also can help you control low blood pressure.

    Ask your doctor about learning how to measure your own blood pressure. This will help you find out what a normal blood pressure reading is for you. Keeping a record of blood pressure readings done by health professionals also can help you learn more about your blood pressure.

    This answer from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute has been reviewed and/or edited by Dr. William D. Knopf.

  • 2 Answers
    A

    Blood transfusion: If blood loss causes low blood pressure, a blood transfusion can help increase blood pressure.

    Drink plenty of fluids: Drinking more water may help raise blood pressure because fluids increase blood volume. Drinking adequate amounts of water also helps prevent dehydration, a common cause of hypotension.

    Avoid consuming alcohol: Alcohol is dehydrating, and it may lower blood pressure. These effects may occur even if a person drinks in moderation. Therefore, patients with hypotension are encouraged to avoid consuming alcohol.

    Stand up slowly: If hypotension occurs when a person stands up after sitting or lying down, it may help to take several deep breathes before getting up. Sleeping with the head slightly elevated may also reduce symptoms.

    If a person develops symptoms of hypotension after standing for a long period of time, it may help to cross the thighs. This puts pressure on the blood vessels and may improve blood pressure. As a result, blood flow from the legs to the heart may increase.

    Compression stockings: Compression stockings, which are often used to relieve pain and swelling of varicose veins, may help prevent blood from pooling in the legs. As a result, symptoms of hypotension may be reduced.

    Medications: When there is no known cause of hypotension, medications may be prescribed to increase a person's blood pressure. For instance, a medication called fludrocortisone is often used to treat postural hypotension, which occurs when a patient stands up after sitting or lying down. This drug, which is classified as a mineralcorticoid, increases extracellular fluid and plasma volume and sensitizes blood vessels to the vasoconstrictive effect of norepinephrine. Other drugs, such as midodrine (Orvaten® or ProAmatine®), pyridostigmine (Mestinon®, Mestinon Timespans®, Mytelase Caplets®, Prostigmin®, or Regonol®), erythropoietin, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), are sometimes prescribed either alone or in combination with other drugs to increase blood pressure.

    You should read product labels, and discuss all therapies with a qualified healthcare provider. Natural Standard information does not constitute medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.



    For more information visit https://naturalmedicines.therapeuticresearch.com/
    See All 2 Answers
  • 1 Answer
    A

    A primary care doctor or specialist may diagnose and treat hypotension. The type of specialist most commonly involved is a cardiologist (heart specialist).

    Other specialists also may be involved, such as surgeons, nephrologists (kidney specialists), neurologists (brain and nerve specialists), or others.

    This answer from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute has been reviewed and/or edited by Dr. William D. Knopf.

  • 2 Answers
    A
    Hypotension is diagnosed based on your medical history, a physical exam, and results from tests. Your doctor will want to know:
    • The type of low blood pressure you have and how severe it is
    • Whether an underlying condition is causing the low blood pressure
    Diagnostic tests
    When a person is in shock, someone should call 9–1–1 right away because emergency treatment is needed.

    For other types of hypotension, your doctor may order tests to find out how your blood pressure responds in certain situations. The results will help your doctor understand why you're fainting or having other symptoms.

    Blood tests
    During a blood test, a small amount of blood is taken from your body. It's usually drawn from a vein in your arm using a thin needle. The procedure is quick and easy, although it may cause some short-term discomfort.EKG (Electrocardiogram)
    An EKG is a simple test that detects and records the heart's electrical activity. It shows how fast the heart is beating and the heart's rhythm (steady or irregular). An EKG also shows the strength and timing of electrical signals as they pass through each part of the heart.Holter and event monitors
    Holter and event monitors are medical devices that record the heart's electrical activity. These monitors are similar to an EKG. However, a standard EKG only records the heartbeat for a few seconds. It won't detect heart rhythm problems that don't occur during the test.Echocardiography
    Echocardiography is a test that uses sound waves to create a moving picture of your heart. The picture shows how well your heart is working and its size and shape. Stress test
    Some heart problems are easier to diagnose when your heart is working hard and beating fast. During stress testing, you exercise (or are given medicine if you're unable to exercise) to make your heart work hard and beat fast while heart tests are done.Tilt table test
    This test is used if you have fainting spells for no known reason. For the test, you lie on a table that moves from a lying down to an upright position. Your doctor checks your reaction to the change in position.

    This answer from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute has been reviewed and/or edited by Dr. William D. Knopf.

    See All 2 Answers
  • 4 Answers
    A
    A answered
    One type of dizziness can be due to low blood pressure, which may be caused by dehydration, medication, heart disease or a combination of factors. One feels as though he or she might “black out” or lose consciousness. This feeling usually occurs soon after standing or getting up from lying down and may be accompanied by visual symptoms. Sitting or lying down often relieves the feeling. Careful medical evaluation is appropriate for this dizziness.
    See All 4 Answers
  • 1 Answer
    A

    Hypotension can affect people of all ages. However, people in certain age groups are more likely to have certain types of low blood pressure.

    Older adults are more likely to have orthostatic and postprandial hypotension. Children and young adults are more likely to have neurally mediated hypotension.

    People who become dehydrated or volume depleted due to many reasons are at risk for hypotension.

    People who take certain medicines, such as high blood pressure medicines, are at higher risk for low blood pressure. People who have central nervous system disorders (such as Parkinson's disease) or some heart conditions also are at higher risk for low blood pressure.

    Other risk factors for hypotension include being immobile (not being able to move around very much) for long periods and pregnancy. Hypotension during pregnancy is normal and goes away after birth.

    This answer from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute has been reviewed and/or edited by Dr. William D. Knopf.

  • 3 Answers
    A

    Hypotension is the medical term for abnormally low blood pressure; the opposite of hypertension.

     

    See All 3 Answers
  • 1 Answer
    A

    There are several types of hypotension. People who always have low blood pressure have chronic asymptomatic hypotension. They have no signs or symptoms and need no treatment. Their low blood pressure is normal for them.

    The three main types of this kind of hypotension are orthostatic hypotension, neurally mediated hypotension (NMH), and severe hypotension linked to shock.

    Orthostatic hypotension

    This type of low blood pressure occurs when standing up from a sitting or lying down position. It can make you feel dizzy or lightheaded, or even make you faint.

    Orthostatic hypotension occurs if your body isn't able to adjust blood pressure and blood flow fast enough for the change in position. This type of low blood pressure usually lasts for only a few seconds or minutes after you stand up. You may need to sit or lie down for a short time while your blood pressure returns to normal.

    Orthostatic hypotension can occur in all age groups. However, it's more common in older adults, especially those who are frail or in poor health. It can be a symptom of other medical conditions, and treatment often focuses on treating the underlying condition(s).

    Neurally mediated hypotension

    With NMH, blood pressure drops after you've been standing for a long time. You may feel dizzy, faint, or sick to the stomach as a result. This type of low blood pressure also can occur if you have an unpleasant, upsetting, or scary experience.

    Severe Hypotension Linked to Shock

    People may say a person has "gone into shock" as a result of an upsetting event. But to doctors, the word "shock" has a different meaning. This implies collapse of the cardiovascular system from a variety of reasons.

    This answer from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute has been reviewed and/or edited by Dr. William D. Knopf.