Hard work paid off or is it the Losartan I wonder?

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I've just returned from a 6 monthly hypertension check with my dr and she has reduced my Losartan from 50mg to 25mg biggrin   I check my BP twice daily and record the readings in a notebook which she is happy with and the average of the past 6 days was 122/76.  I showed her the readings going back many months all of which were good.

I was initially started on Ramipril 15 months ago then had it changed to an equivalent dose of Losartan and I have been on that for 9 months. I walk for at least half an hour every day, have reduced my weight  [BMI down from 24 to 18.5] as much to keep diabetes at bay - I was told I was prediabetic with an A1c of 41 - and also to try and stop my knee arthritis becoming worse.

However despite all that she informed me that my Q risk was 13.4% she was instructed by the NHS to offer me a statin: [thanks, but no thanks!] I'm 71 and next month will be 72 and the risk goes up to 14.5%. I asked her whether if knowing all the facts she would take one herself if offered and she said definitely NO !!  She did not think it is right to hand them out at a risk of 10% to anyone who does not have heart problems.

0 likes, 12 replies

12 Replies

  • Posted

    What was your BP reading when you were first diagnosed?
    • Posted

      When I had the health check in Feb 2013 it was 163/96, then the 24hr monitor was 160/90 and it was recorded as being 'stage 2 hypertension'.  My cholesterol was 5.9 total and the ratio 2.7. I'd had this done before the health check purely as a recall from 3 years previously when the total was 6.4 and the ratio 3.7. Nothing was said then other than giving me diet advice [binned]  The BP has been coming down very slowly ever since I started on medication in May 2013. Of course when I'm at the surgery it shoots up - today it was 160systolic. ! I was very upset .at first at being put on meds for the BP and it took me months to really get used to the idea. It was the psycological aspect of taking them for life I think.Anyway the dr had considered reducing the dose last Feb and has finally done so now. I'm curious to know what will happen and at what point i should return if it rises again. Right at the beginning she said to aim for BP of 135/85 and it has been consistently lower than that..

      I feel anger at NICE moving the goal posts for prescribing statins from 20% down to 10%. i just can't believe that they wish to medicate the population to such a degree. Basically the risk rises every birthday regardless of other factors and if you are on BPmeds at all that adds another 2% to the score. If I tweak the boxes and alter my age to 67 the risk drops to 9% but fast forward to 71 and it is 13.4% with no other know risks other than being on BPmeds.

  • Posted

    I'm amazed at what 50mg of Losartan did for you. I take 100mg and it does not much for me. Proves how different we all are.
    • Posted

      It will be interesting to see what happens now: I'll probably have to go running back when/if it rises. Wait and see I guess. At least I will know if the changes I made to lifestyle made any difference.
    • Posted

      Long may your present readings continue.

      This morning an hour after taking my 100mg of Losartan it is 174/92 40. Yesterday 180/81 42. By mid day it was 128/72 51,

  • Posted

    Jane, well done on being able to reduce the Losartan dose - all your efforts have obviously paid off.  My BMI is also 24 - would love to lose weight and reduce it as you have done but don't see how I can tweak my diet any further.  I walk for 20-25 minutes a day.  Have you got a magic forumula?!!!  As far as my cholesterol is concerned, it used to be around the 6.2 level but haven't had it checked for a couple of years.  Statins were never suggested, but I would be against taking them anyway due to their propensity to cause muscle pain - have got over a long term inflammatory condition which caused horrendous muscle pain, so just cross fingers and hope my cholesterol isn't going any higher.
    • Posted

      I think I've been lucky on the Losartan: when I was first put on meds the dr wanted to start me on a calcium channel blocker, that being the first choice med if you are over 55 yrs apparently. I refused because you can't eat grapefruit with them so they put  me on Ramipril whcih thanks to the cough was soon changed to Losartan. The Ramipril did the job though, surprisingly, wwith just a small dose.  My cholesterol was considered borderline at 5.9 and I've not had it measured again since first being diagnosed with hypertension. In fact it was because of this figure that I was called for the NHS health check when the BP was discovered. Now that NICE have reduced the threshold for statins to 10% with a risk of 13.4% I was targeted. I wonder if the dr gets a bonus for putting well patients nto them - anyway I refused them and to be fair my dr agreed with me.

      As to my weight; having been a weight watcher for about 40 years I suddenly had a Damascus moment when I realised WW's main aim was to sell their biscuits etc. I gave up salt as I'd been instructed and cut out alcohol more or less.  I bought a copy of the Fast Diet, I found the science fascinating and ton his site I checked out the LCHF diet. With the threat of T2diabetes hanging over me decided to cut my carb intake somewhat. First off I ditched breakfast cereal  in favour of eggs and a slice of whlemeal toast and butter. I stopped buying the low fat yogurts because of the sugar content and ate very little red meat but loads of fish and plenty of vegetables. Other than that I ditched cakes and biscuits and eat 3 meals a day.if I do want a snack it's either fresh fruit or nuts.  Together with the exercise [walking and gardening] the weight dropped off slowly over several months. I've loads of energy and feel years younger than my 71 [soon to be 72] years. 

    • Posted

      Thanks for the reply Jane.  I don't have any salt in my diet nor alcohol but I do have a daily 'live' fat-free yoghurt - I think that's about the only thing I could cut out so doubt whether it would make a lot of difference.  I eat loads of veggies and salads, a couple of fresh fruits daily and oily fish 2-3 times a week for the Omega 3.  I do have muesli for breakfast - I don't think just a slice of bread would keep me going for long! I think I'll try bumping up the exercise and see if that helps as it's encouraging to hear how energetic you feel - keep it up.  Oh, and it's not that bad being 72!!!
    • Posted

      Actually it's not just a slice of toast for breakfast, it's a boiled egg [or poached] plus a slice of toast and butter. Not sure if it's due to the butter or the protein,  probably the latter, but I no longer seem to feel hungry mid morning and starving by lunchtime as I did with just cornflakes. Your BMI of 24 isn't so bad though.

      I've read that plain full fat yogurt - Greek type- is better than the low fat ones which are loaded with sugar. I eat those now whereas I used to eat masses of the fruit sort, especially the Muller ones. I can't think of anything else that made the weight fall off, no magic formula.

        I also read that the high carbohydate/low fat way of losing weight that we have all been brainwashed into since the 1970's doesn't work in the long run: someting to do with insulin but I forget the detail or where I read that. Possibly on one of the diabetes websites. I still have that to contend with prediabetes and have to wait until early January to get my next A1c test to see if this low carbing has had the desired effect.

      My grandaughter informed me that I no longer had a bottom and in her eyes was too thin - as though that was a bad thing! Having had a large bum since my 20's I told her that I was quite happy about that thanks! 

      As for the BP meds, only time will tell.

    • Posted

      I have eaten yogurt all my life. We used to make our own at one time but I started to buy 0% Fat Yeo Valley. This year I read of its sugar content so I searched for an alternative. I found one in Holland and Barratts with low fat and low sugar. As always when you find something good they stop making it.

      I'm told that Asda sell a low fat, low sugar one. I will have to seek it out. 

    • Posted

      Derek, Snap! with the 0% Yeo Valley, and Snap! too with making your own at one time!  I still have the little glass pots.  I too was alarmed when I read recently that a small pot contains about 6 teaspoons of sugar.  However, the sugar isn't added, it's naturally occuring, so I can't believe it can be as bad for you as, for instance, those yoghurts loaded with fruit and it's added sugar.  The 'live' versions are so good for us in so many ways, and especially to replace the good bacteria in our stomachs after a course of antiobiotics which destroy that good bacteria.  There, I've probably now talked myself into continuing with my non-fat Yeo Valley!
    • Posted

      Well it is nice... but has gone up in price a lot in the past two or three years.


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