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Hypotension: watch for your type and symptoms

Hypotension: watch for your type and symptoms

Any patient knows his best, this is what we aim at Capitol Hospital – to educate you enough to keep a check on the alarm signals your body gives.  Blood pressure conditions can be quite dicey at times and if we discuss hypotension or low blood pressure there are quite a few medications too which can lead to low blood pressure, these are:

  • Water pills (diuretics)
  • Alpha blockers, such as prazosin (Minipress)
  • Beta blockers
  • Drugs for Parkinson’s disease, such as pramipexole (Mirapex) or those containing levodopa
  • Certain types of antidepressants (tricyclic antidepressants)
  • Drugs for erectile dysfunction, including sildenafil (Revatio, Viagra) or tadalafil (Adcirca, Cialis), particularly when taken with the heart medication nitroglycerin

So, you can always consult a medical specialist whenever your low blood pressure condition persists for long especially if you are on any of the above mentioned medications.

Risk factors

Hypotension can occur to anyone, though certain types of low blood pressure are more common depending on your age or other factors which just might be causative agents in low blood pressure:

  • Age: Drops in blood pressure on standing or after eating occur primarily in adults older than 65. Neurally mediated hypotension primarily affects children and younger adults.
  • Medications: People who take certain medications, for example, high blood pressure medications such as alpha blockers, have a greater risk of low blood pressure.
  • Certain diseases: Parkinson’s disease, diabetes and some heart conditions put you at a greater risk of developing low blood pressure.

Types of low blood pressure

Medicos break down low blood pressure (hypotension) into categories, depending on the causes and other factors. Some types of low blood pressure include:

  • Low blood pressure on standing up (orthostatic or postural, hypotension):

This is a sudden drop in blood pressure happens when you stand up from a sitting position or after lying down.

  • Low blood pressure after eating (postprandial hypotension):

This sudden drop in blood pressure after eating affects mostly older adults. Lowering the dose of blood pressure drugs and eating small, low-carbohydrate meals might help reduce the symptoms.

  • Low blood pressure from faulty brain signals (neurally mediated hypotension):

This disorder, which causes a blood pressure drop after standing for long periods. This type mostly affects young adults and children. It seems to occur because of a miscommunication between the heart and the brain.

  • Low blood pressure due to nervous system damage (multiple system atrophy with orthostatic hypotension):

This is also called Shy-Drager syndrome, this rare disorder causes progressive damage to the autonomic nervous system, which controls involuntary functions such as blood pressure, heart rate, breathing and digestion. It is associated with having very high blood pressure while lying down.