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Scout- 11-28-2005 09:57 AM

When would it be time accept you have high BP and need medication?
 
Hi all, to those who know me from posting about 18 months back and to the newer posters :)

I'm back here because well, my BP is high again and I'm in a state of worry about it. I am literally fearful of going on BP meds - that scares me something chronic - and I was wondering how far can one go before you'd generally have to accept that without meds you cannot get your BP under control?

When I was last posting here I came because my BP was high, but life was very different then and apart from anxiety I didn't have many true stresses. Now on the other hand there are a lot of external factors that I'm sure have contributed to my BP being so high, plus a dire lifestyle due to work has not helped one bit.

2weeks ago I was getting readings like 15x-16x/11x-12x - far, far too high I know and since then I have put myself on a strict diet and have started exercising every day as well and am getting numbers ranging from 13x-14x/9x-10x with occassional jumps to what I had initially. I know these numbers are not good, but I am currently 100lbs overweight and was leading a totally sedentry lifestyle before I decided to make the changes I have. I've been told that weight loss is the first major move you have to make to lower your BP along with changing your diet, cutting our salt and taking up exercise I was also hoping someone could inform me of the number of systolic and diastolic pts you drop for every 10kgs you lose (I think it was, I can't remember)

Basically I'm in need of some education and a little bit of a guide as to when I can/should concede and go on meds. I am aware that right now my numbers are dangerous and that meds should probably be my first port of call, but for me they are the absolute last straw - my BP has scared me enough to stop me from lapsing (this time - I lost a lot of weight before and over the past 18months it has returned) The last time I was here I took a similar course of action and got my BP to 120/80 and after about 2months I stopped checking it and hadn't followed it much at all until a few weeks ago (imagine my shock seeing the awful numbers) I feel like a different person mentally - I hit a rock bottom and now wish and hope to have a chance to correct my ways..it may be too late, I don't know, but I'm here to try and ascertain that and mostly for the advice of others, has anyone else had a journey similar to mine and come through it without needing meds? I would love to hear and be inspired by you. :)

I'm 28 years old btw. Apologies for the lengthy and probably jumbled post. I've got a lot of thoughts swirling round in my head and it's like a race to get them all out before they disappear!! :bouncing:

I hope you guys can help me out.

Scout

msmom03 11-28-2005 11:55 AM

Re: When would it be time accept you have high BP and need medication?
 
Hi,

I am new here. I have never had trouble with my bp. But I am having trouble now.

I am not over weight. In fact, I have to struggle to stay at a weight that is acceptable to my doctors. And I am a gymnastic coach and a pilate instructor. I exercise a great deal everyday. In fact, my entire life is built around physical activity.

I tell you this because my blood pressure has no simple solutions. "Exercise and lose ten pounds" is not a statement that doctors can say to me.

My husband has had blood pressure issues since he has been your age. We do not eat salty foods as I have been very strict about watching his diet for him. He watches also. Salt is something that neither one of us even like due to the 15 years or so we have lived without it.

Yet, my blood pressure numbers have been very similar to yours as of late.

What do I do? How do I lower them?

I do worry about my bp. And that tends to add to the problem. Yet, my uncle died at 46 years old because he would not take medication for his blood pressure. Eventually his organs died and so did he. Sad really. He had his own problems, but obesity was not one of them.

For me, the answer is easy. Medication is needed. That is how I feel. I am a bit upset now because I feel I am not be medicated aggressively enough. I have truly been questioning my doctor about that. I see her on Friday for another visit.

There are many things that a person can die from in this world. Many things that hit a life where little control can be grasped. But bp is not one of them to me. I am not going to die from my organs being pounded to death due to my own stubbornness.

I have MS as well as some other complications. I have been on daily medication for years. Taking another pill or two each day does not bother me at all. It is better than living powerlessly under a sentence that has been handed down from one generation to the next in my family.

I love perfection. And I want my organs to sit in my body as perfectly as they can. The thought of sustaining any damage to my organs due to this issue really makes me wiggle with discomfort.

Everyone in my family has bp issues. Even my 21 year old son has a spike here or there. I am sure it will not be long before he is medicated.

My husband, son and I are not large people. We truly watch our diet and our lives are built around activity and action. It doesn't seem fair that we should be dealing with this issue.

But if a medication is going to increase the quality of my life and help me to abtain maximum health, then I am not going to hesitate to take it. That is just my personal thoughts on the subject.

Hope this has been a thought process you can entertain.

lindiana53 11-28-2005 12:31 PM

Re: When would it be time accept you have high BP and need medication?
 
My situation is a little different, but I made my decision when microalbumin started showing up in my urine. My blood pressure wasn't even particularly high, but I decided that I wanted to keep my kidneys. I take a BP pill every day and the kidney problem seems to have reversed itself. I would not have been able to do this without medication, so I just resigned myself to a lifetime of these pills.

Uff-Da! 11-28-2005 04:51 PM

Re: When would it be time accept you have high BP and need medication?
 
I would personally request that I go on BP meds if my systolic was consistently over 140 or my diastolic consistently over 90. But I'd make it clear to the doctor at the outset that I would continue on meds only provided the side effects were not too bad and that I considered this to be just a temporary measure until I was able to get my pressure reduced through lifestyle measures. IMO it just seems prudent to protect one's blood vessels while one is getting their act together.

I was personally on BP meds for five years until I was able to make enough lifestyle changes to be able to get back off them. But I had absolutely no side effect problems with my med (Lisinopril) whatsoever. Not everyone is so lucky, but there is no use assuming you'll have problems until you try it, either. But if you do, you can switch to a different med or make a decision to try lifestyle changes only at that time.

Scout- 11-29-2005 01:31 AM

Re: When would it be time accept you have high BP and need medication?
 
Thanks for the replies guys, I guess I should have mentioned this in my first post, but I've already tried Atenolol, which to be frank, scared me off trying meds again unless it were to be my final measure.

What I was getting at with my first post was how long can I try lifestyle changes and so on before, giving up if there is not enough improvement in my results. I am aware meds would be the wisest route right now, but like I say I work in the reverse to many here I guess - I feel that once I did go on meds that'd be it for me and I'd be on them for life.

I think I should also reiterate that I got my BP down to normal levels a year ago through hard work, diet and exercise without meds and it is because I basically slipped back into my old ways that it went back up again (plus new stresses) . For me I do feel quite positive that lifestyle and weight loss make big changes, I just want to know by how much weight lost if nothing has changed should I concede? Surely if my numbers haven't reduced after a certain amount of weigt it would be more indicative that I have actually got true HBP like dare I say it, msmom03 has?

Just need some kind of guide towards this info if poss :)

Thanks again for replying guys, much appreciated.

Scout

Lenin 11-29-2005 06:19 AM

Re: When would it be time accept you have high BP and need medication?
 
Scout,

I remember you,well...

I can ASSURE you that, if you lost the full 100 pounds that you are overweight or even HALF of that, your blood pressure would fall to normal levels. Quantifying it in points systolic per kilogram lost is impossible though.
Lose a little, and you'll lower it a little. The first 15 pounds often gives noticeable results.

Join a gym...and GO! :bouncing:

Moxie75 11-29-2005 07:25 AM

Re: When would it be time accept you have high BP and need medication?
 
Hi Scout,

Welcome back I have pondered this question many many times and experimented in so many different ways myself. I think I'ts time for you to go on meds. I had to and I was scared into it when a woman my age died recently of a stroke from taking her meds from time to time and forgetting them constantly. She left behind 2 young daughters and a husband that are devastated by their loss. Ask you doc to try you on Diovan I have tried many and that one has not caused me any side effects. Atenenlol (spelling) is satan's spawn in my opinion..Lisa

GEORGEP 11-29-2005 07:56 AM

Re: When would it be time accept you have high BP and need medication?
 
[QUOTE=msmom03]Hi,

I am new here. I have never had trouble with my bp. But I am having trouble now.

I am not over weight. In fact, I have to struggle to stay at a weight that is acceptable to my doctors. And I am a gymnastic coach and a pilate instructor. I exercise a great deal everyday. In fact, my entire life is built around physical activity.

I tell you this because my blood pressure has no simple solutions. "Exercise and lose ten pounds" is not a statement that doctors can say to me.

My husband has had blood pressure issues since he has been your age. We do not eat salty foods as I have been very strict about watching his diet for him. He watches also. Salt is something that neither one of us even like due to the 15 years or so we have lived without it.

Yet, my blood pressure numbers have been very similar to yours as of late.

What do I do? How do I lower them?

I do worry about my bp. And that tends to add to the problem. Yet, my uncle died at 46 years old because he would not take medication for his blood pressure. Eventually his organs died and so did he. Sad really. He had his own problems, but obesity was not one of them.

For me, the answer is easy. Medication is needed. That is how I feel. I am a bit upset now because I feel I am not be medicated aggressively enough. I have truly been questioning my doctor about that. I see her on Friday for another visit.

There are many things that a person can die from in this world. Many things that hit a life where little control can be grasped. But bp is not one of them to me. I am not going to die from my organs being pounded to death due to my own stubbornness.

I have MS as well as some other complications. I have been on daily medication for years. Taking another pill or two each day does not bother me at all. It is better than living powerlessly under a sentence that has been handed down from one generation to the next in my family.

I love perfection. And I want my organs to sit in my body as perfectly as they can. The thought of sustaining any damage to my organs due to this issue really makes me wiggle with discomfort.

Everyone in my family has bp issues. Even my 21 year old son has a spike here or there. I am sure it will not be long before he is medicated.

My husband, son and I are not large people. We truly watch our diet and our lives are built around activity and action. It doesn't seem fair that we should be dealing with this issue.

But if a medication is going to increase the quality of my life and help me to abtain maximum health, then I am not going to hesitate to take it. That is just my personal thoughts on the subject.

Hope this has been a thought process you can entertain.[/QUOTE]

I have similar issues. I have a history of Hypertension in my family. I was diagnosed with high blood pressure a few years ago and have been taking Diovan since. I am lucky that I have no noticeable side effects from it and it has kept my blood pressure under control. I like yourself have always exercised and watched my diet so I know it was not caused by a bad lifestyle but is more than likely genetic...I will keep taking the medication as long as it is needed...

Moxie75 11-29-2005 09:04 AM

Re: When would it be time accept you have high BP and need medication?
 
[QUOTE=GEORGEP]I have similar issues. I have a history of Hypertension in my family. I was diagnosed with high blood pressure a few years ago and have been taking Diovan since. I am lucky that I have no noticeable side effects from it and it has kept my blood pressure under control. I like yourself have always exercised and watched my diet so I know it was not caused by a bad lifestyle but is more than likely genetic...I will keep taking the medication as long as it is needed...[/QUOTE]

Agreed.. same thing happened to me. I was diagnosed a few years back and am on diovan as well. I have a family history of it and have worked out for years and ate healthy. I eat even more healthy now than ever before and so the genetic trait rules again. As much as I fight tooth and nail to offset it it wins every time. I will not give up trying though, I have my bouts of given in only to try something new..Lisa

msmom03 11-29-2005 10:17 AM

Re: When would it be time accept you have high BP and need medication?
 
What kind of side effects does everyone get from their medication?

I have MS and have had tonic spasms from the MS since I was diagnosed. I am on a good deal of anti-seisure medication to control the spasms. At this point I am controlled.

I also am on an interferon that I take 3x a week. This medication can leave me very sick, and I take Celebrex to counteract the side effects.

I certainly do not mean to belittle this issue. That is not my intent here. But I do not understand what side effects would be so bad that you would prevent taking medication due to them.

I am on a VERY LOW DOSE of Novasc and it is like taking water next to some of my other medication.

Educate me please! I don't wish to be ignorant.

lindiana53 11-29-2005 12:20 PM

Re: When would it be time accept you have high BP and need medication?
 
I'm one of those unlucky people who cough on the ARB's. However, I told my doctor that I'm willing to put up with it because the Diovan protects my kidneys and it's more than a fair tradeoff. Life is full of choices that aren't always fair, I guess.

cartner 11-29-2005 05:22 PM

Re: When would it be time accept you have high BP and need medication?
 
I don't cough at all with ARBs, I have been on Cozaar 50 mg then I switched to Atacand 8 mg. ARBs make me dizzy and tired :(. Everyone is different
Thanks,
Michael

Scout- 11-30-2005 06:55 AM

Re: When would it be time accept you have high BP and need medication?
 
[QUOTE=Lenin]Scout,

I remember you,well...

I can ASSURE you that, if you lost the full 100 pounds that you are overweight or even HALF of that, your blood pressure would fall to normal levels. Quantifying it in points systolic per kilogram lost is impossible though.
Lose a little, and you'll lower it a little. The first 15 pounds often gives noticeable results.

Join a gym...and GO! :bouncing:[/QUOTE]
:bouncing: Thanks for the wrds :D they gave me a smile. I'm going to try my best , if it isn't good enough and it is fated that meds are the only answer then so be it, but I'll definitely give lifestyle and weight loss a chance first. My numbers are not great but I have seen improvements already and I figure that the numbers gradually reduce just like weight loss, and not in massive chunks?

Scout- 11-30-2005 06:58 AM

Re: When would it be time accept you have high BP and need medication?
 
[QUOTE=Moxie75]Hi Scout,

Welcome back I have pondered this question many many times and experimented in so many different ways myself. I think I'ts time for you to go on meds. I had to and I was scared into it when a woman my age died recently of a stroke from taking her meds from time to time and forgetting them constantly. She left behind 2 young daughters and a husband that are devastated by their loss. Ask you doc to try you on Diovan I have tried many and that one has not caused me any side effects. Atenenlol (spelling) is satan's spawn in my opinion..Lisa[/QUOTE]
May I ask why you think it's time for me to go on meds? Just curious, I do agree it is the logical and sensible chocice which takes me out of immediate danger, but I question it because that would then be the first course of action and not the last, if you follow my meaning?

Surely it's better for me to try first and then if that doesn't work go on meds?

Thanks. A curious,

Scout

:)

msmom03 11-30-2005 03:13 PM

Re: When would it be time accept you have high BP and need medication?
 
My neighbor went on medication while she made the life changes. Then when her changes were made, and the bp dropped, she weaned off the medication. That worked. That is always an option.

I am a componant of "be safe". To me, it is unsafe for you to risk the health of your organs while you work through the other life changes that are necessary. Adjustments can always be made with medication. Once you start medication it is not etched in stone that you have to stay on them.

Do you think that once you are medicated, the medication will become an "easy button" that you can press in order to keep from doing the hard work that is necessary to change your lifestyle? I know that has happened with my brother. He takes medication while allowing himself to eat too much and stay too heavy. His medication has become an "easy button". Some people need that state of urgency in order to make productive healthy changes. Maybe you are just like that. This is a thought that is worth thinking through.

Why are you so afraid of starting medications?

Personally I am always afraid of the damage that can occur. Make me "safe" and then I will change. I have a natural drive that works for me this way. It isn't anything I can take credit for. It is just inborn. But somepeople aren't like me.

The word picture that I can best think is being in a burning building with a major skin tear. First, I would get out of the burning building and then adress the skin tear. To me, you are trying to address the skin tear while being in the burning building.

Because my uncle died of kidney failure due to blood pressure, I see the blood pressure issues as an issue that can lead to death. It is the burning building. Life style, to me, is the skin tear. Nobody should walk around with a gapping hole in their body, and the issue should be addressed. But what should be done first? That I guess is the question we are trying to answer here.

I would get out of the burning building first. Then I would deal with the laceration. This doesn't mean that I would be homeless in the future because of my neglect. I could always make a change in the future and move into a new house.

Think about it. That is what my neighbor did. She developed a pattern of safetly, then made life changes, then made adjustments and pulled off the medication when the life changes proved to be beneficial.

That is definately how I would do it.


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