BP readings all over the place

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Hello everyone,

I'm a 51 yr old male , general good health , somewhat of a work a holic , recently my doc asked me to keep and eye on my BP at home because I got an above average reading at his office ,

I do work a very Stressful job and eat like a horse and also I do smoke , not a lot but it's there .

I do get readings all over the place up & down

Examples :

4:00am at kitchen table before coffee ...133/84

12:00 noon at work stress ...145/90

5:00pm Saturday mowing lawn ...133/87

9:00pm relaxed..... 128/82

The above are just a few examples , I always note exactly what I'm doing when I take readings , my BP jumps up and down and is constantly all over the place all day at different times ,

I do own a top of the line BP machine .

I haven't seen a BP reading of 120/80 or below in myself since I was in my 20's .

My doc says he can't say I have high BP for sure because the readings are so erratic and is very hesitant to give me meds . Nor do I want meds , Is there anyway I can stabilize this BP . Or is this normal .... Open to suggestions

Thanks .

0 likes, 16 replies

16 Replies

  • Posted

    Important note : this high reading I got , the reading was 160/104 , was at my dentist office I was undergoing implant surgery at the time The reading was taken, this surgery was very uncomfortable very stressful and mostly painful the needles , drills etc etc .... I feel would raise anyone's BP the dentist wasn't sure if it was caused by the stress of the procedure or if it was a constant issue that's why I was sent to my primary to follow up ,

  • Posted

    A hypertension consultant suggested that I am not truly hypertensive but have peaks and over medication was the cause of my excessive side effects.. He now suggests that I do not take medication every day but only on days it is raised. I now take a 25mg Losartan about twice a week. At one time I was taking 240mg Verapamil, 100 mg Losartan and a diuretic.
  • Posted

    craig25014..I'm certainly not a doctor, but I don't understand 'why' your doctor is a little uptight. Your readings don't seem all that bad really. BP fluctuates throughout the day..surely he told you that, or at least he should have. The diastolic number (lower) could be a little lower, but it's no big threat to you, that's for sure. Your worst reading was 145/90...not a big big deal, but the diastolic could be lower. You have stated that numbe was because of stress. Stress can do nasty things to the body.

    Don't go getting hyper about having reading of 120/80..it likely won't happen. Years ago that used to be the 'golden' number, but it isn't anymore. I do hope though, that you're taking the readings at least 30min. after activity.Do not take the readings immediately after.

    By all means speak with your doctor, but I certainly wouldn't be worrying about these numbers..not at all.

  • Posted

    Daughter had high BP and her doctor was reluctant to medicate as she is very fit and not overweight. She was able to make changes incher workplace and lessen the stress and BP is now normal. Your readings could indicate the need for a 24hr monitor like she did.
  • Posted

    Hi Craig,

    This all looks perfectly normal to me. Everyone's BP fluctuates quite widely throughout the day. The only reading that's borderline is the stress one from the office. 90 is just above the limit for diastolic. The reading in the dentist's office is well up in the hypertension range, but that was almost certainly a one-off down to nerves.

    Mike is quite right. Doctors these days - at least the intelligent ones - no longer take 120/80 as the gold standard, particularly for people of middle age or older. Some, however, are still stuck firmly in the old ways. I scored 160/95 in my doctor's office the other week but he just laughed and said he was glad he'd managed to scare me for a change because usually I scare him! (I'm inclined to bully him a bit because I don't like taking medications.) We both had a good laugh, he took it again 5 minutes later and it was 120/80.

    That being said, it wouldn't hurt to try and address your stress levels and continue the smoking reduction. Being a workaholic isn't a badge of honour, just the route to an early grave! You say you "eat like a horse" too. That might be OK, but it depends what you're eating. You should try to cut out salt except for small amounts in cooking and cut back sharply on carbs - especially sugar. And that includes sugary drinks. All of which means mainly eating food you've prepared yourself, with only an occasional junk-food treat, as that stuff is loaded with salt and sugar - even the savoury dishes. You don't have to go vegan or start shopping in "health food" stores, just be careful about what you eat. And you didn't mention exercise. That helps too. Not working out violently in the gym once a month though. It's better to take regular, moderate exercise like walking, cycling, swimming etc. several times a week.

    I'd say keep up the monitoring but don't obsess about every little change.

    • Posted

      Thanks so much for the prompt responses , I'm pretty sure most of my issues concerning stress and my BP is because I am a work a holic and my job is high stress , but being a single father I gotta do what I gotta do , my average work day is generally 13hrs . And begins at 4am when I get up in the morn and in the office by 5. I try not to dwell on health stuff that's not good , but I do try and watch my numbers since this was brought to my attn , but I do see some up and down wild readings when I do take it , but it's never steady I guess that's a good thing ,

  • Posted

    It's normal.

    That's why there is no formal definition of hypertension.

  • Posted

    Here is an example of how much my BP changes

    Last night

    Home from work ......143/91

    After dinner ..............136/85

    This morning having coffee 3:35am ...128/83

    I'm no expert but clearly I'd have to say my readings have to be driven by what I'm doing at the time .

    128/83 is NOT hypertension or high blood pressure by any sence of the definition, and I have a good idea my Dr. Office didn't want to address this because there's nothing to address .

    • Posted

      All perfectly normal for a 51-year-old. I think you're right, and there is nothing to address. Why not scale back to taking your BP just once or twice a week now you've established there's nothing wrong? No point in adding to your stress load by taking it regularly throughout the day.

    • Posted

      Yeah I think the dentist and my primary got just alittle freaked about that 1 high reading , which is why they wanted me to watch it . I told them both when your shoving needles and drills and screws and stitches in someone's mouth that's Not at all a pleasant experience, and the body is experiencing stress and pain of course the BP is going to respond . I think like you said time to leave it alone now and move on , nothing to dwell over , at least I learned a bit about my BP in the last few weeks because I was taking it at different times during different activities not just at full rest to get a clear picture of my over all vascular fitness . Stress and activities def plays a Major role in BP numbers , I'll chalk this up as another 1 of life's learning experiences.

      Thanks everyone for the opinions .

      Have a good day .

      Note : if your going to monitor your BP at home make sure you get the best BP machine you can the cheap ones are in no way accurate at all .

  • Posted

    My readings are so erratic and now I have developed an ascending aortic aneurysm and may need surgery to correct it. My readings Dec 26th. . . . I spent the entire day relaxing. . . doing virtually nothing but resting all day, yet my readings were all over the place:

    1pm            142 over 104

    2:15pm        128 over 89

    4pm              99 over 68

    6:30 pm        138 over 94

    My highest ever was 150 over 107

    and my Lowest ever was  91 over 65

    Don't smoke, don't drink, eat all organic, no salt, no sugar, gluten free, no breads or pasta, eat tons of vegetables, protein from salmon, white meat chicken & turkey, mahi-mahi, cod.

    Yet my BP is all over the place and I have a 4.5 centimeter Ascending Aortic Aneurysm that can kill me in 2 minutes or less if it blows out.

    Anybody out there who can point me in the right direction to get some real answers and help?


    • Posted

      I first of all will ask...why are you taking your bp readings so often. BP fluctuates from minute to minute. It can be perfectly normal one minute then high the next. Relax, and take your bp readings no more than 1 or 2 x daily. 
    • Posted

      Mike is right to an extent.

      ​When I am taking a BP measurement I try to achieve the Resting Heart Rate (RHR) before taking a reading.

      ​This involves being in a relaxed seated position for at least five minutes without any audible, visual or physical interruptions - something virtually impossible to achieve in a consultation room and often difficult at home.

      ​However, in certain circumstances there may be a need to track shorter term fluctuations using something like the non-invasive pulse oximeter (image of output shown below) which shows heart rate, blood oxygen level and instantaneous blood flow rate (the bottom trace). 

      ​If there are any issues with your circulation system they will show up immediately on a recording pulse oximeter which after being connected to a computer can give a printout as evidence.

      ​Note that the bottom trace (known as a plethysmograph waveform) is the instantaneous representation of your oscillating blood pressure between the systolic peaks and the diastolic lows.

      ​The attached image shows my vital signs after reaching RHR stability.


  • Posted

    Dear Craig,

    ?At 51, in overall Good Health, and with your numbers; you're a Very Lucky Man.  And by that I mean, "Your Future Health appears to be completely in Your Hands" regarding Heart Health!  You didn't divulge Your Height, Weight, or BMI - but you did divulge indirectly some very important things.  You "Eat like a Horse" sooo, more than likely you're overweight.  Your Systolic BP (Top Number) is pretty much affected by stress and weight.  As little as a 10 pound loss can result in 5 - 10 Point reduction in this number. A moderate amount of exercise  such as 30 minutes of walking 5 days a week will also fix this Elevated Systolic BP.  At 70 Years Old, I was 38 pounds overweight last summer.  I came up with my own plan and with some positive feedback from this Forum, I am down 20+ Pounds.  About 18 to go to be "Normal Weight", i.e., BMI of LESS than 25.  You can Google BMI Tables.  And actually, Normal Weight and exercise can help with the Stress.  But whether one agrees or not, Stress is a Personal, Internal Issue.  The same "Stressors" can bother one Person and be like water off a ducks' back for another.  Workaholic?  I was working an average of 80 hours per week when I retired at 49 to start my own business.  (I am still waiting on the call from AT&T telling me they can't function without me and will I come back?!)  I was making 6 Figures 21 Years ago.  But I could either "Hang it Up" - or leave my Family at a very young age.   OK, so YOU can Fix Your own Systolic BP.   Easily.  Up to you.

    ?NOW, Believe it or not, Your Mildly elevated Diastolic is the Bigger concern.  Normally that increased number means - at your low increased number - means some (but not much) Blockage or Hardening of your Arteries.  Scare You?  Don't mean to do so AND You can stop doing any additional exacerbation of this/these Issues by doing the following.

    ?STOP THE DARN SMOKING TOTALLY!!!  Smoking causes Your Blood to be "Sticky" and consequently start building up Plaque!  Plaque both narrows the Arteries AND makes them become less flexible!  Not as noticeable in the BIG arteries as it is in the smaller ones at first. (Are you starting to have problems in the Bedroom Yet?  Those vessels are Smaller - and No Pun intended there!)  If not, You're definitely going to fix or stop any further damage by doing several things such as:

    ?Bet Your Cholesterol and/or Tri-glycerides are High!  Tri's can be brought down very quickly by discontinuing Simple Carbs such as Candy, Soft Drinks, Beer, etc.  I was drinking 6 - 8 soft drinks per day.  I drink ONLY Water now!  BTW, Tri's are also called VVL Density Fats as opposed to High Density and Low Density Cholesterol.

    ?Your ability to get your Cholesterol Down without Meds can usually be controlled with Diet unless you're Genetically predisposed to Elevated Cholesterol.

    Am I on Track so far regarding Cholesterol, Tri's and weight?  

    ?If I am, I'll repeat myself.  Your elevated BP is only mildly elevated.  You CAN Fix it Yourself!

    ?I wish you Luck and determination!  Repost in 4 Months.  I'd Love to see Your Progress!

    God Bless You and Yours and Best wishes for the New Year!


    • Posted

      ErnieSC..you have provided some valuable information. Lowering Cholesterol and/or Triglycerides goes a long way to a healthy person. One thing I always notice about people are the smokers. Some will not, regardless of circumstance cut out that dangerous habit.

      As for the diastolic bp readings...yes, it is very important, but here in Canada, depending upon one's age., it's quite acceptable to have a 90 reading. Here's some facts about diastolic reading:

      Diastolic blood pressure measures the pressure in your blood vessels between heartbeats (when your heart is resting). Represented by the bottom number in a blood pressure reading, diastolic blood pressure is considered low when the blood pressure reading is below 60; a diastolic blood pressure reading higher than 90 is considered high. Lifestyle changes, such as losing weight, can help lower diastolic blood pressure. I do think craig 26014 has the upper hand in getting his numbers lowered...if he exercises like he says, but most importantly...cut out the smoking. 

      I have some very good friends who smoke like chimneys. He is a diabetic, is on bp medications, eats pretty much want he wants, yes including sugary things. Sometimes his partner & I wonder if he truly is a diabetic or he's play acting, but I have seen medication prescribed by his doctor. He gets it into his head that the pills keep control, but I know for a fact that taking medication is one step, the patient must assist the medication.The man smokes so much I makes me dizzy just watching him. It's one after the other after the other, especially if he's in conversation. He'll put one out, then reach for another. She on the other hand isn't nearly as bad but has said that she has absolutely no intention whatsoever of quitting. When I leave their home, my skin & clothes reek of cigarette smoke, even when we sit out on the deck that is covered with plastic to allow them to use it during winter. With both of them smoking, it's very difficult for the smoke to filter outside. I have cut back my visits, because of this but would not hurt either of them for the world, so I haven't said anything. Also, I don't have to tell you that smoking is extremely bad for the heart. Her adult son had a heart transplant 15 months ago, is visiting, so I wonder if they'll dramatically cut back on the smoking or continue. 

      I wish everyone on the forum a very happy new year.May 2018 be good to you all.

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