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Old 07-11-2005, 03:56 PM   #16
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Re: Think I may put myself back on BP meds

Quote:
Originally Posted by mgraylorn
I'm surprised you got a prescription for HRT when you had high blood pressure. I was under the impression oral estrogen was not allowed if one had hypertension. I got taken off the Pill for that very reason.
Can you point me to any research which shows that there is a problem with this? I spent over an hour looking and could find none. I did find one article which said that
Quote:
61 clinicians reported that they would not prescribe HRT in women whose hypertension was difficult to control, but only 3 would withhold treatment if blood pressure was well controlled.
So I'm assuming there is some kind of problem with the combination and I'm just not finding it. Since I never had problems getting my BP under control, there may not be an issue for me.
Quote:
I don't think you want to stay on HRT the rest of your life. If you went through natural menopause, a doctor would probably try to get you off of it after a time.
I still haven't found the complete report of the second half of the WHI study, (edit: see correction below) which covered those taking estrogen alone. My biggest concern from the references I've read about it was that there was increase in strokes with estrogen. But I want to see the exact figures before I reach any conclusion. But realistically, if quantity of life is at odds with quality, I'll take quality. Serious hot flashes to be does NOT make for quality. I already have to sleep in two shifts per day 99% of the time, as I wake up in the night and can't get back to sleep for a minimum of four hours. I can only imagine how much worse it would be if I were having serious hot flashes again.
Quote:
My understanding is that because of the increased risk for breast cancer the current strategy is to take as little HRT as you can to alleviate symptoms for as short a period of time as possible.
I take estrogen alone. Here is a statement I read regarding the research on that.
Quote:
The second component of the WHI study, which studied estrogen alone in women who no longer have a uterus, did not find any increased risk of breast cancer.
Edit: I found more complete results of the estrogen only part of the study. You'll find it here:

http://www.whi.org/updates/update_hrt2004.php

Last edited by Uff-Da!; 07-11-2005 at 06:31 PM.

 
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Old 07-11-2005, 04:00 PM   #17
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Re: Think I may put myself back on BP meds

Quote:
Originally Posted by mgraylorn
I'm surprised you got a prescription for HRT when you had high blood pressure. I was under the impression oral estrogen was not allowed if one had hypertension. I got taken off the Pill for that very reason.

I don't think you want to stay on HRT the rest of your life. If you went through natural menopause, a doctor would probably try to get you off of it after a time. My understanding is that because of the increased risk for breast cancer the current strategy is to take as little HRT as you can to alleviate symptoms for as short a period of time as possible.
I was on Premarin for 10 years with HBP. I took myself off last year hoping that would help lower my BP. It didn't seem to make a difference so I got back on it. I take the lowest dose of Premarin (.3 mg) every other day.
I don't want to be on it but the menopause related symptoms are unberable without it. I know there is an increased risk for breast cancer but my insurance provides me with a yearly mammogram.
Cass

 
Old 07-13-2005, 07:31 PM   #18
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Re: Think I may put myself back on BP meds

Quote:
Originally Posted by CASSIEBEL
I was on Premarin for 10 years with HBP. I took myself off last year hoping that would help lower my BP. It didn't seem to make a difference so I got back on it. I take the lowest dose of Premarin (.3 mg) every other day.
I don't want to be on it but the menopause related symptoms are unberable without it. I know there is an increased risk for breast cancer but my insurance provides me with a yearly mammogram.
Cass
You are on Premarin? Estrogen only? Have you had a hysterectomy? According to the large WHI study, there was not an increased risk for breast cancer for women who had had a hysterectomy taking estrogen only. It was the combination estrogen-progestin for women with intact uterus that gave a higher risk for breast cancer in that study. There was a higher risk of stroke in both groups, though.

 
Old 07-13-2005, 08:05 PM   #19
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Update

I went in for my annual physical today. Bah, humbug! I didn't like the BP results. The nurse took my BP before I talked with the doctor. Result: 161/80-something. She took it with the office machine after I talked to the doc. Result: 181/90-something. She was then interrupted for just a couple of minutes with some other detail, then came back and tested my own monitor. Result: 154/84. So they think my machine is malfunctioning.

Then I did a few errands before going to Wal-Mart and taking my pressure. There I sat down for several minutes and rested before taking it, whereas at the doctor's office the readings with their machine were taken immediately after I walked into the testing area both times. Result at Wal-Mart: 137/80.

Well, that had me baffled. Were both the Wal-Mart monitor and mine totally off? So I drove back to my home town, walked into the fire station, and had them take my pressure. Again, no resting period after I sat down before taking it. Result: 172/92.

My monitor is a Reli-On, which I bought since the first of the year. I'll have to go back and see if I can find when I bought it (it might have been mid-January to late March), but there was no definite change in my readings when I went from one to the other. I think I always had big changes even from minute to minute on the old machine.

Anyway, I hate to spend big bucks on another new machine unless I know this one really isn't functioning correctly. I think what I'll have to do is see if I can find a friend or neighbor who doesn't usually have wild fluctuating numbers to test it on and who also has their own machine to compare it with.

Probably my increase in pressure from before I talked to the doctor to afterwards was that she is now emphasizing 115/75 as optimal BP, whereas before if it was under 140/90, she didn't get too excited. And she is now talking "aim for LDL of 100, but 70 is better" on lipids, whereas before she was more concerned with ratios. Yes, she went to a conference a week or two ago. Do you suppose it was sponsored by the pharmaceuticals?

 
Old 07-13-2005, 09:48 PM   #20
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Re: Think I may put myself back on BP meds

Quote:
Originally Posted by Uff-Da!
You are on Premarin? Estrogen only? Have you had a hysterectomy?
Yes, yes & yes. I am aware of the heart related risk -but-sometimes one has to think about the quality of life. I still try to get off every 6 months or so.
Thanks for the info.
Cass

 
Old 07-13-2005, 10:08 PM   #21
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Re: Think I may put myself back on BP meds

Quote:
Originally Posted by CASSIEBEL
Yes, yes & yes. I am aware of the heart related risk -but-sometimes one has to think about the quality of life. I still try to get off every 6 months or so.
Thanks for the info.
Cass
Well, you are braver than I. After about 21 years, I'm still taking a .3 every day, and no way would I consider lowering it. I'm right at the edge where I'd like to increase it. Because of a strong family history of strokes, though, I've decided not to ask my doctor to do that, but I'm with you. Quality of life has got to come first. Since I'm only taking half the dosage used in the study, at least the risk should be somewhat lower.

 
Old 07-14-2005, 12:54 PM   #22
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Re: Update

Quote:
Originally Posted by Uff-Da!
I went in for my annual physical today. Bah, humbug! I didn't like the BP results. The nurse took my BP before I talked with the doctor. Result: 161/80-something. She took it with the office machine after I talked to the doc. Result: 181/90-something. She was then interrupted for just a couple of minutes with some other detail, then came back and tested my own monitor. Result: 154/84. So they think my machine is malfunctioning.

Then I did a few errands before going to Wal-Mart and taking my pressure. There I sat down for several minutes and rested before taking it, whereas at the doctor's office the readings with their machine were taken immediately after I walked into the testing area both times. Result at Wal-Mart: 137/80.

Well, that had me baffled. Were both the Wal-Mart monitor and mine totally off? So I drove back to my home town, walked into the fire station, and had them take my pressure. Again, no resting period after I sat down before taking it. Result: 172/92.

My monitor is a Reli-On, which I bought since the first of the year. I'll have to go back and see if I can find when I bought it (it might have been mid-January to late March), but there was no definite change in my readings when I went from one to the other. I think I always had big changes even from minute to minute on the old machine.

Anyway, I hate to spend big bucks on another new machine unless I know this one really isn't functioning correctly. I think what I'll have to do is see if I can find a friend or neighbor who doesn't usually have wild fluctuating numbers to test it on and who also has their own machine to compare it with.

Probably my increase in pressure from before I talked to the doctor to afterwards was that she is now emphasizing 115/75 as optimal BP, whereas before if it was under 140/90, she didn't get too excited. And she is now talking "aim for LDL of 100, but 70 is better" on lipids, whereas before she was more concerned with ratios. Yes, she went to a conference a week or two ago. Do you suppose it was sponsored by the pharmaceuticals?
Oh Oh, sounds like she is falling into the "group" of the old numbers game. I think 98% of them are doing it, as it seems U can't find a dr. anymore who isn't into number quotes........

I need to get my Omron checked out again, as last time I couldn't get it to match up with the drs. at all.... Like U, I don't want to spend a whole bunch of money for a new one if it is just me, as mine does fluctuate alot, always did the last 2 yrs.

 
Old 07-14-2005, 01:13 PM   #23
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Getting monitor checked out

Well, I just took my BP monitor over to my next door neighbor. She says her pressure hardly ever varies at all. She'll test my machine against hers on both herself and her husband, so I should have a pretty good idea if it is me or the machine.

Before giving my neighbor the monitor I had talked with her several minutes in the back yard, then came in, walked up the stairs and immediately took my pressure with my monitor. Result: first an error on the machine, then 152/77, pulse 89. Then I waited quietly just a couple of minutes and took it again. 120/78, pulse 91. Then I took it three more times with only a few minutes wait between each. Systolics ranged from 108-116 and diastolic ranged from 74 to 77. Do those results seem out of whack to you? If it isn't the monitor, it just looks to me like I am highly affected by being around other people (which I believe to be true) and that I'm totally out of shape, since I can't even climb one flight of stairs without my pressure going up so much I get an error on the machine. Anyone have a different interpretation?

 
Old 07-14-2005, 04:48 PM   #24
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Re: Getting monitor checked out

Quote:
Originally Posted by Uff-Da!
Well, I just took my BP monitor over to my next door neighbor. She says her pressure hardly ever varies at all. She'll test my machine against hers on both herself and her husband, so I should have a pretty good idea if it is me or the machine.

Before giving my neighbor the monitor I had talked with her several minutes in the back yard, then came in, walked up the stairs and immediately took my pressure with my monitor. Result: first an error on the machine, then 152/77, pulse 89. Then I waited quietly just a couple of minutes and took it again. 120/78, pulse 91. Then I took it three more times with only a few minutes wait between each. Systolics ranged from 108-116 and diastolic ranged from 74 to 77. Do those results seem out of whack to you? If it isn't the monitor, it just looks to me like I am highly affected by being around other people (which I believe to be true) and that I'm totally out of shape, since I can't even climb one flight of stairs without my pressure going up so much I get an error on the machine. Anyone have a different interpretation?
Well I know that is about how my monitor was acting about a month ago, and it was making me nuts. Sometimes I would get very low readings, then out of nowhere it would be up in the 140+ range. Other times I could be running around like a nut and it would be low and stay low for hrs., so I have no idea. I haven't taken it to this dr. yet, but will next month, but my last dr. got a reading of 137/85 and when we tried my monitor got 178/98. He took my pressure again, and it was 140/88. He told me it was because he used a much bigger cuff then mine, yet mine isn't tight on me??? Oh well, it is in the hutch draw till I figure out what is up with it. Hopefully U will get an answer from your neighbor tonight.

 
Old 07-14-2005, 07:30 PM   #25
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Re: Think I may put myself back on BP meds

Well, if the problem with my monitor is the size of the cuff, then I may be in heap trouble, as I haven't been able to find a home monitor designed for an arm smaller than nine inches. Before I bought this last monitor, I measured my arm and got nine inches further up on the arm but 8.75 right above the elbow. But you know how it is to measure, one doesn't always know exactly how tight to pull the tape for accuracy. Anyway, the pharmacist thought the nine inches should be okay, and when the readings I was getting didn't seem particularly different from the old monitor (and I had checked the monitor against the one at the doc's office at one time), I thought it should be fine. Hmmmmm, maybe it is just that I have to be super careful in exactly how I place that cuff on my arm.

You'd think they would make cuffs for small women, as well as the oversize cuffs. I have a BMI of 20.3, so I'm not even underweight. Just because a person is thin doesn't mean they don't have to be concerned about their blood pressure. Maybe I'll have to start lifting weights. LOL! That'll be the day!

 
Old 07-14-2005, 07:32 PM   #26
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Re: Getting monitor checked out

Quote:
Originally Posted by Uff-Da!
Well, I just took my BP monitor over to my next door neighbor. She says her pressure hardly ever varies at all. She'll test my machine against hers on both herself and her husband, so I should have a pretty good idea if it is me or the machine.

Before giving my neighbor the monitor I had talked with her several minutes in the back yard, then came in, walked up the stairs and immediately took my pressure with my monitor. Result: first an error on the machine, then 152/77, pulse 89. Then I waited quietly just a couple of minutes and took it again. 120/78, pulse 91. Then I took it three more times with only a few minutes wait between each. Systolics ranged from 108-116 and diastolic ranged from 74 to 77. Do those results seem out of whack to you? If it isn't the monitor, it just looks to me like I am highly affected by being around other people (which I believe to be true) and that I'm totally out of shape, since I can't even climb one flight of stairs without my pressure going up so much I get an error on the machine. Anyone have a different interpretation?
Uff-Da
I really do understand your frustration, I go through the same scenerio all the time. I blame it on everything from anxiety to (like you) just being around other people. I can have a conversation with a friend, my daughter, or a stranger, even on the phone, and then take my BP and it will be way higher than minutes before.??

Do you feel any different after an encounter with someone? I do, I can feel my nerves tighten up and my mind usually has all kinds of thoughts speeding through it.

As for the monitor, I have three and I get these up and down results on all of them. My husbands BP remains within a 10-20 point rang all day.

Cass

 
Old 07-14-2005, 07:51 PM   #27
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Re: Getting monitor checked out

Quote:
Originally Posted by CASSIEBEL
Do you feel any different after an encounter with someone? I do, I can feel my nerves tighten up and my mind usually has all kinds of thoughts speeding through it.
You'd better believe it. If I go to a meeting or have company in the evening, for example, I'm so wired I can't fall asleep for hours. But when I'm home alone with my three cats, I fall asleep within minutes every night now that I'm retired. That wasn't the case while I was working, though. Then I could be home from work for five or six hours, but might lie in bed for hours before finally getting to sleep. Since I retired, I've become almost a hermit for that reason. I'm calmer, sleep better, no longer have the muscular tensions. And I think blood pressure follows the same pattern. Of course, I don't normally take my pressure around other people to confirm it, but I really expect my systolic is from 20 to 30 points higher around other people, even people I know well and whose company I enjoy.

 
Old 07-14-2005, 09:43 PM   #28
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Re: Think I may put myself back on BP meds

Quote:
Originally Posted by Uff-Da!
Well, if the problem with my monitor is the size of the cuff, then I may be in heap trouble, as I haven't been able to find a home monitor designed for an arm smaller than nine inches. Before I bought this last monitor, I measured my arm and got nine inches further up on the arm but 8.75 right above the elbow. But you know how it is to measure, one doesn't always know exactly how tight to pull the tape for accuracy. Anyway, the pharmacist thought the nine inches should be okay, and when the readings I was getting didn't seem particularly different from the old monitor (and I had checked the monitor against the one at the doc's office at one time), I thought it should be fine. Hmmmmm, maybe it is just that I have to be super careful in exactly how I place that cuff on my arm.

You'd think they would make cuffs for small women, as well as the oversize cuffs. I have a BMI of 20.3, so I'm not even underweight. Just because a person is thin doesn't mean they don't have to be concerned about their blood pressure. Maybe I'll have to start lifting weights. LOL! That'll be the day!
My monitor fits 9-13" and when I wrap it around, there is ALOT of extra material. I know my husband took it to his cardio guy and if they placed it a lil off from where the tubing should go, they got wacky readings on him. It does seem to have to be placed exactly right, or it reads wacky. Of course in the drs. office they use that huge thing that goes almost all the way up my arm, and even the one I have is just about to my armpit.

I'll just see what happens next month when I take it to this new dr. and if it still acts crazy, then who knows, maybe it is time for a new one? I bought this in 2000, so I would assume it is still ok. Oh well, not going to worry about it, as who knows, maybe I just have nutty BP.....

 
Old 07-15-2005, 05:47 PM   #29
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Okay, what would you do next?

Well, my neighbor returned the BP monitor to my porch this morning while I was taking a nap. Apparently she didn't check it against her monitor at all. Maybe she couldn't find it! She says her own pressure is usually pretty consistent. Here are the readings she got on mine, apparently in order:

133/85, 130/85, 130/70, 128/78, 123/80, 119/75, 121/75, 114/76, 115/74

Her last reading at the doctor's office was 120/70, which she says is typical. So it looks to me like her readings on my machine aren't that far off from what would be expected, and the fact that they tended to go down as she apparently sat there quietly looks right. But it doesn't really lead me to conclude that my machine is reading low.

Okay, next I decided to do some further testing on myself. I'd been sitting quietly, then I walked into another room, talking out loud to myself (to similate the situation at the doctor's office where after talking to the doctor they had me immediately go to another room and took my pressure).

167/84

That's 14 points lower than my systolic after talking to the doctor. However, I wasn't nearly as agitated with talking to myself as I was after having her spout off the "Goal is LDL 100, 70 is better" bit. So I still don't really know if my machine is reading low.

Then I sat there quietly for five minutes and got

143/71 and in an additional 5 minutes

145/71 and in an additional 5 minutes

135/73

Next I again walked into another room, talking to myself out loud and came back, took my pressure immediately and got

162/79

Next I went back to the fire department. I had hoped maybe one of them would test my machine on another one of them, instead of on me, since my pressure obviously changes with the slightest bit of talking, moving, etc., but they didn't want to do that. One of them did allow me to sit quietly before taking the reading and got 141/77 on my machine, then 154/84 on theirs. Unfortunately, before testing on theirs he asked a couple of questions which I had to answer in a few words, so I did talk, plus just listening to one question, "Do you have a problem with your blood pressure?" could well have sent my pressure up between the two readings. (Okay, I may be goofy, but even the sound of someone else talking can send my BP up. Now do you know why I've decided to become almost a hermit?)

Anyway, what do you think? Shall I assume that my BP meter really is reading low (as my doctor and the guy at the fire department think), and just spring for a new one?

 
Old 07-15-2005, 07:21 PM   #30
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Re: Think I may put myself back on BP meds

Well, I guess I've worked myself into a dither about all this! (That's nothing new!) After typing the above, reading other threads on this and the cholesterol board, and thinking some more about my visit with the doctor, I walked back upstairs and took my pressure 183/84! That's the highest I've ever recorded it on this machine! I could just feel the adrenelin in my body, too. It felt just like back when I was still teaching and had just had a major discipline problem with some smart alec kid. My BP didn't budge downward one bit after five minutes, either. After 20 minutes it was down to 154/89. If my machine is really running about 14 points low on the systolic, I'm in heap trouble! Think I'd better go for a walk and get some of this out of my system.

 
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