Curious to know what others do. Having been diagnosed with hypertension a year ago

Posted , 4 users are following.

I was put on the lowest dose of Ramipril which was raised a month later. This did lower the blood pressure but gave me an awful cough so Ramipril was changed to Losartan 50mg, Since then no problems at all. I take my own readings to the dr and she is happy with that. They average at anywhere between 125>/75 to <130 0="" with="" the="" occasional="" diastolic="" reading="" of=""><90> which causes some concern in the surgery. Better than the sky high readings I get when in the surgery though, So can someone explain why I would suddenly get a reading of 67/57 followed by 64/46. I frequently feel light headed mid morning a few hours after taking the pill so assume this is all connected.

When I started taking my own readings I was told to take 2 readings a few minutes apart and record the lowest, then do an average over several days. After some months I was told to take the readings in the same way but to use ALL of the readings to find an average. There is a difference in the result. I wonder what other people do?

I'm always trying to get the numbers down -I think they need to be below 135/85 - as I'm afraid that they will raise the medication if I don't. I take lots of exercise and lost weight and cut out salt - all the things we are told to do and wonder whether the BP would be a lot higher if I didn't do those things?

Also, they do tell you not to take the BP after exercise but out of curiosity I have often done this and that also can produce some really low readings. I never include these in the average.

0 likes, 19 replies

19 Replies

  • Posted

    I have asked to monitor my BP at home by taking 2 readings one minute apart each am. and pm. I was on lowest dose Ramipril for about 4 years and then hadn't been to docs for couple yrs only to discover my BP had risen to 172/97 in the surgery.

    As I suffer with WC syndrome when in the surgery, I asked for ambulatory monitor and this showed 141/89. So Ramipril was increased to 10 mg but due to awful cough was reduced to 5 mg with addition of 10 mg Amlopidine.

    Monitoring at home seems to be 137/87 approx. I have yet to take my monitoring results back to GP so don't know how the average is worked out but will be asking following your question. Like you if a reading v low or high I don't include. No idea if this is right or wrong!

    Similar to you I do not wish to have medication increased etc and regularly exercise and am not overweight but I haven't yet got as far as cutting down/out salt or daily alcohol. I have also had my BP taken following exercise at my gym a couple years ago and it has been fine. When I asked why it wasn't higher following my class, I was told that exercise helps to lower it! So who knows?

    i do just wonder if the medication masks the issues such as why we have high BP. I retired couple yrs ago from a v stressful job so have been surprised that mine had risen so high and was why I hadn't been to GP as felt fine and assumed all well.

    Sorry I have no idea about your low readings but assume is the medication. All very confusing. Hope you get some answers as I am just sharing my experience so not much help to you afraid.

    • Posted

      Thanks for the reply, it is always interesting to know how others manage the problem. Presumably you have had high BP for some years?  Other than getting repeat prescriptions [2 months at a time] every 6 months - and that has only happened v recently - I would say we both do much the same thing. The ambulatory monitor they gave me when I was diagnosed after an NHS health check showed 160/96 which set alarm bells ringing with the dr.  Like you I had no issues and felt betrayed by my body forcing me onto medication that I didn't want. Anyway there it is - looks like I'm stuck with it, and it could be much worse. It's just that the NHS has strict cut offs for tests for both hypertension and diabetes and after that there is no going back it seems.They have you in their sights for ever.... Grrr!!


    • Posted

      Yes agree it's interesting to exchange experiences. Probably been on medication for it about 5 years but the lowest dose of Ramipril 2.5 mg.Having been put onto Amlodipine (5mg not 10mg as I said earlier as well as misspelling it!) about a month ago, I visited my dentist who said he was very unhappy that I had been put onto it as it is a calcium blocker and so would not be good for my gums. He asked me to ask doc to change the Amlodipine. So back to docs a week or so ago ( been so many times in last few months after the 2 year oasis!) who said that he was not keen to change medication as trying to get my BP stable and that an alternative drug would be more toxic! Not a pleasant thought.

      So at this same apptmt, I was getting the results of a back scan and was told I need to go for a bone scan as have possible early stage of osteoporosis. So now wondering what other damage a calcium blocker will do? It was at this time he asked me to do my own BP monitoring at home, saying that if results good I may be able to come off the Amlodipine. So guess if blood pressure reduces you can stop the treatment. However don't think it will happen for me at the moment anyway. 

      Now need to revisit doc with the home BP monitoring and then again at a later date re scan results whenever that will be. Well do hope you sort out your issue and  resume a health good feel factor v soon. 

    • Posted

      Some montiors work out the average for for readings taken within ten minutes of each other.

      I have an Omron MIT Elite Plus that also flags up irregular heart beats.

      It stores ninety readings that you can input into your computer to produce a report from their software.

    • Posted

      My Omron does the same things although it's a different model no, but I still have to produce all of the numbers separately as well as doing an average of the lot - it would be easier to let the machine do the work for me !
    • Posted

      An upgrade would save you a lot of clerical time.

      I was doing manual entry for years with my Omron M4 recording daily results on the back of an envelope to input at the end of the month.

      Look on Ebay auctions where I got my one new and boxed for £44.

      It came from a doctor who was presumably selling a sample.

    • Posted

      I didn't make myself clear; it's the doctor who wants to see the separate readings and to take an average over a week or so. I think because there is often such a huge variation in the separate readings. The machine manages just fine. It is an 'Omron 6 intellisense' and does the average of the 2 or 3 readings taken at any one time just like yours does, together with pulse rate and irregular heartrate. I bought it just a year ago at Amazon for about £48.00 and saw the self same one in Boots recently for close to £100 !! It's good and reliable.
    • Posted

      I understood that.

      My labile readings for yesterday

      209/112  58  Morning

      167/85   53   Evening

      125/62   44   Bedtime.


    • Posted

      each of those being the average of 2/3 I presume?  It's at that point she wants all the individual readings, a frightful bore to enter up! 

      I usually find the morning reading [before breakfast] quite high though not as high as yours and I don't do an evening one, i assume by 'evening' you mean 6 or 7 pm?  At bedtime then it will be much lower.However for a week or more at a time the morning and bedtime readings will reverse and I'll get a really low morning reading. Why would that be I wonder?

      I will do it as you do [ie 3 times a day and use the average] and post back here. Interesting to compare notes. Thanks.

    • Posted

      My averages do not usually vary much over two or three readings. It is the morning ones that concern me...what is my body up to during the night? The evening one I usually do between six and seven. My evening one is usually high if I have not been out in the afternoon as yesterday and Thursday. Usually it would no be more than 135/67

      One would think that morning ones might be lower after a nights sleep but on the other hand the previous days medication will have started to wear off. I have tried taking mine at night or splitting the doses but it is still high in the morning.

      Do you ever take another reading when standing. Hospitals often do that.

      Averages! When I was being considered for renal denervation at Imperial College my initial readings at the consultation were the usual sky high white coat ones. They attached a monitor to me set to record every three minutes and sat me in the corridor for about forty five minutes. The readings varied wildly and they ignored all but the lowest and said that my BP was reasonably controlled at 147/77.

      If anyone is doing research I have most of my monthly figures on file since the end of 2001.


    • Posted

      Hi there have you had a 24 hour monitor to find out about your bp when your sleeping.They say it should dip at night but you know I have come to the conclusion that there is alot of hype about this, we are all different.  160/100 was within normal levels 15 years ago, and if you have no kidney or heart problems or diabetes do you think we are worrying too much abut our numbers?
    • Posted

      There are industries out there who make billions more every time the figures are lowered. I came to the conclusion last year that I should sell my Greggs shares and switch to drug companies.... Pills not Pies:-)

      S**t I didn't put my money where my mouth was as Greegs price started to recover and now AstraZeneca have soard.

      I've been having 24 hour monitoring for the past ten years. Extreme highs and lows but every time and at three different hospitals the reply is 'It's the average that counts"

      Back in my grandmothers day the mantra was that your BP should be 100 plus your age. That's me OK in that case at 179/XX. Some say that it is the diastolic that is the important figure but others say it is the systolic.

      I keep complaining that they move the goalposts every year. The professor at Imperial College said in 2011 that 140 would be acceptable but 135 should be the target. The practice nurse when I have my annual diabetic check up talks of 125 or even 120.

      I know how I feel at different levels and can practically give an informed guess as to my reading any time. If under 130 I am on the way to being light headed. There is obviously no drug that can keep anyones BP at a constant level and to much produces unacceptable and dangerous lows for the patient plus other side effects. I have been taking losartan since 2001. My only problem with it is a practically all over under the skin itch that I am well used to. It went when I was taken off it and started on other drugs from time to time that produced worse side effects.

      My doctor says that the irtch is caused by an effect that Losartan has on the liver.

      My heart problem was aortic stenosis and I had my valve replaced. That is caused by a calcium build up. Stress tests always give false positive and two angiograms have shown that  my arteries are clear. My kidneys are in good state apart from a small cyst that is not a problem so I will no longer take statins as they gave me muscle pains. My cholesterol is around 5.6.

      My blood glucose levels can shoot up as I am glocose intolerant the three month average reading last year was to them a worrying 7.6 but I point out that it was 7.8 ten years ago and under old rules no one was overly concerned. I tried Metformin and other drugs and all gave me ulcer like stomach pain.

    • Posted

      so after all your tests the hospital is happy with your average are they?different doctors have different opinions I think,   i have just had a reading of 93/56 this morn and then 180/146 with an  irregular flashing I think I will put my monitor away for a while causing more worry I think  keep taking pills and leave it at that. Makes you wonder whats in the damned pills making you itch like that its as if you are allergic to losartan and cholestoral is ok at 5.6 mine is 5.4  so hopefully clear arteries, this bp thing does your head in it changes so much, so you are sticking with losartan for now then?
    • Posted

      Everything that I read tels me that the high erratic readings make you more likely t have a stroke.

      I have had end of day readings as low as as 57/48.

      Losartan and verapamil now stooped as it lowers my heart rate too much had given the least side effects.

      Over the years in sequence I have had Atenolol + Amlodipine ( too many side effects to list) Lisinoprlil (lips swelled up and big blister on back of throat)Verapamil August 2000 to May 2012 ( consipation ) then Enaparil added in September 2000. Stopped in January 2001 due to all over rash

      Losartan added in December 2001.

      In 2010 Irbesartan, Ramipril and Perindopril tried and stopped before going back to Losartan. The Professor who suggestet Peindopril so impressed my GP with its benefits that practicaly all the patients at the pracitce were put on it.

      I have had other beta blockers and several diuretics. The diruretics all gave me pelvic pain and some almost stopped my urine output all together. I guess thatI am contrary as well labile.


    • Posted

      {Its like a maze is.nt it all these different pills our poor livers wink what can you do these very low readings are assosiated with the meds I am sure of that my 8 year old sons is higher than that always.  I think keeping taking blood pressure measure is bad for our mind set.  It is for mine anyway and alot of irregular heartbeats included.  Betablockers seem to work better for me.  I cannot get it taken at the docs anymore whitecoat and anticipation totally rule that out..  what a carry on take care lets hope they find a cure for high bp then we will all be set free of this bp measuring for good


    • Posted

      Have you had an ECG for your irregular heart beats?

      My monitor used to show them but ECG's said that I was in sinus rythm.

      After AF caused by my heart valve replacement and cardioversion I was again in sinus rythm.

      A colonoscopy caused me to go into AF again. After cardioversion it said in sinus bradycardia ( my heart rate has always been in the 40's) with ectopic heartbeats. I will see what this weeks follow up ECG says.

    • Posted

      no  I hav.nt  have to mention it next time docs see if I need a ECG hope all ok though hope you post about your follow up how many irregulars were you having
    • Posted

      Reading your and Helen's conversation makes me realise what others have to put up with and how lucky I am that hypertension was discovered by chance at an NHS health check;  I was only called in for that as I'd had borderline high cholesterol.  All the subsequent checks and blood tests and an ecg revealed nothing untoward.  The nurse who did the initial check did make me cross though when she found the hypertension, she said "Well you are 70" as though I was quite definitely at the end of the road ! I only feel 29..

      One thing that wasn't picked up on at the time was my HbA1c test which is done routinely in a health check. It was months later that I discovered that it was just a point short of prediabetes and they hadn't said anything, I discovered this when I asked for my notes online. I got onto the dr who said "Nothing to worry about" but of course I did when I read up about diabetes and  how at this stage you can prevent full blown type 2. They gave me another A1c test and that was the same almost a year on from the first one.  The dr said that as I'd lost weight and was exercising due to the hypertension it should have gone down therefore I was already prediabetic, His words were "Watch your diet: your numbers will rise and when they reach close to 50 I'll have the metformin ready for you, have another test in a year". I bought myself a testing kit and it seems to be OK but of course that isn't the same as the A1c. Not good. 

      As I said I would, I took the BP 3 times yesterday taking 3 readings each time.  The average first thing was 106/77, evening [7.30pm] 109/70 and bedtime 113/67.  I'm happy with that although it's lower than usual and no large spikes and dips at all.  I don't take it daily unless I have a drs appt due.

      I quite often do feel  spaced out;  I take Losartan 50 mg and the last time I saw the dr in Feb she wondered whether to lower the dose but didn't. I am not due for another until August.

Report or request deletion

Thanks for your help!

We want the community to be a useful resource for our users but it is important to remember that the community are not moderated or reviewed by doctors and so you should not rely on opinions or advice given by other users in respect of any healthcare matters. Always speak to your doctor before acting and in cases of emergency seek appropriate medical assistance immediately. Use of the community is subject to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy and steps will be taken to remove posts identified as being in breach of those terms.