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Old 08-05-2007, 11:43 AM   #1
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Hypertension in an 8 year old! Help!!

Hi everyone, my son is 8 years old nearly 9, since last april it was found out that he had sustained hypertension and up until now they cannot find a cause, he has had kidney scans mri scans ecg's heart scans and the only thing that they can find is a very very slight narrowing of his aorta which the cardiologist at great ormond street hospital in london said he wasnt concerned about because it was very minimal, has anyone ever heard of hypertension in someone as young as this? He is on Atenalol 25mg 5mls a day and bendrafluazide water tablets once a day, this seems to be controlling it very well. They said his hypertension had been present for some time because the vessels in his eyes very very swollen and were on the verge of bursting and would have caused blindness so luckily it was spotted at the right time. Someone told me that this could be caused by hormonal problems? The consultant doesnt seem to be concerned about this, just keeps testing his kidneys but can find nothing. We are due to see consultant again in october, just wondering if theres anything you guys think i should ask him? Can i insist that he be tested for various things or will he only do it if he thinks necessary? Im so scared for my little boy, wondering if this will cause any long term problems ie: will it affect puberty being on the medcines, will he live a long life?

Anyone with any advice please let me know

Thank you
Nikki x

 
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Old 08-05-2007, 03:41 PM   #2
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Re: Hypertension in an 8 year old! Help!!

Hi Nikki,

I understand how you feel. It is very upsetting when something is wrong with your child,and the doctor's can't give you an answer. I beleive that it is really good he is on med's now to control the BP while further investigations are taking place.

BP in an 8 year old as you described is very rare and would most likely be secondary BP,meaning that something else in his body is causing him to have BP.

I am gald you have a referal to a specialist,becuase it seems as if the doctor you have now is not forthcoming in instigating more investigations. I would try to get more information on BP in children and make a list of all possible causes and ask that they examine all likely suspects.

Family history and previous medical history are also important too.

Take comfort in knowing that you acted in time,and he is on the right medication now. Monitor his blood pressure and get frequent eye exams. You might also look at his diet.for example cutting down sugar and salt foods.

I am sure this will resolve itself and your little boy will return to good health. I hope that someone else will jump on this thread and offer you a bit more advice and comfort.

 
Old 08-05-2007, 07:30 PM   #3
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Re: Hypertension in an 8 year old! Help!!

Has your son had a 24 hour urine test to check for metanephrines?

It is extremely rare, but there is a condition that can cause elevated BP in children and it is very easy to rule in or rule out with a blood test called a Plasma Free Metanephrine test.

Does he have any other symptoms, such as higher heart rate, sweating, flushing, abdominal discomfort, headaches... anything else that seems to be out of the ordinary with the higher BP?
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Old 08-06-2007, 04:57 AM   #4
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Re: Hypertension in an 8 year old! Help!!

Hi, im not sure if he has had that test, he was admitted to hospital for a week and every time he passed urine he had to do it in a container and they measured how much he was passing every day, not sure if its been tested though.

When it was first discovered to have it it was because hed been admitted to hospital with stomach pains and they thought it was an appendicitis but this turned out not to be the case, within 24 hours of being admitted the pains had gone and he hasnt had them since, looking back now i can see the telltale signs that he had blood pressure, he used to come home from school most days saying he had a headache and he felt dizzy, i didnt think anything of it though just thought that it was because all the other kids were shouting, you dont think do you that your baby could have high bp! Initially his bp was 170/140 or thereabouts it was dangerously high, that is why they transferred us straight away by ambulance to great ormond street hospital.

So what do you think i should ask the consultant to test for now? Will the consultant be annoyed with me asking, i dont want him to think that im undermining his skill or authority but this is my baby were talking about and im so scared, my other kids arent affected at all, they have all been tested and they are fine, bp does run in my family, my father had it and my partners father has it and is on meds for it

 
Old 08-06-2007, 11:44 AM   #5
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Re: Hypertension in an 8 year old! Help!!

Hi Nikki,

You say that while in the hospital for a week, your son had to collect urine non-stop. This would indicate that kidney and/or adrenal disorders were suspected as probable causes of his sudden onset hypertension. This is very often the case in secondary hypertension. The non-stop urine collection was for use in a number of tests. I believe that all of the appropriate tests were performed during his hospital stay. The doctors try very hard to determine the cause of secondary hypertension. Once the diagnosis is made, the proper treatment can be initiated. Often the hypertension resolves itself once the cause has been successfully treated.

I am glad he was referred to a specialist. Because of your child's age, they will do everything in their power to identify the cause and treat it. Have faith in your specialist's skills - he deals with similar issues on daily basis.

Good luck to you both!
Flowergirl

Last edited by flowergirl2day; 08-06-2007 at 02:43 PM.

 
Old 08-06-2007, 03:01 PM   #6
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Re: Hypertension in an 8 year old! Help!!

Nikki,

I came across some information on hypertension in children while looking up the effects of hypertension on a heart rate. Anyway, I'd like to add this to my previous post:

Normal blood pressure for children ages 6-9 122/78

Children and babies develop high blood pressure. Starting at age 3, the American Heart Association recommends blood pressure exams during the children's yearly checkup. Early detection of hypertension greatly improves prognosis.

Most cases of hypertension in children involve secondary hypertension, that means there is usually a condition present that is causing the elevation in blood pressure. Primary hypertension in children is somewhat uncommon.

High blood pressure is not a reason (if uncomplicated) for restricting the children's physical activities. Long term exercise often results in a blood pressure reduction. You should check with your son's doctor about the appropriate activity level for a child his age and whether or not there should be any restrictions.

Flowergirl

 
Old 08-06-2007, 07:18 PM   #7
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Re: Hypertension in an 8 year old! Help!!

Nikki,

It would not hurt to ask for the Plasma Free Metanephrine test (usually more sensitive than the urine test), and as for worrying that the Dr may think that you are undermining him or anything, don't worry about that. You are a concerned parent and you have every right to ask for testing, demand answers and push the Dr to look harder. They will not get angry at you and with you keeping on top of them they will be more vigilant in searching for the 'trigger'.

Just remember, the squeaky wheel gets the grease... so squeak, squeal and grate on their nerves.

I hope that your son gets the attention that he needs and the reason for his troubles are soon found so that he can go back to being the happy healthy child that annoys you by bouncing off the walls and being too loud.
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Old 08-07-2007, 02:18 PM   #8
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Re: Hypertension in an 8 year old! Help!!

Nikki,

There's a recent thread on the kidney board titled '"Kidney problems in a 9 year old". It seems that Mindy has been dealing with these issues for a while and her experience could prove to be very helpful.

Flowergirl

Last edited by flowergirl2day; 08-07-2007 at 02:19 PM.

 
Old 08-08-2007, 09:10 AM   #9
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Re: Hypertension in an 8 year old! Help!!

Hi there thank you for that information, his bp fluctuates normally between 110-125 so the medication is working fine, i will ask the consultant though to test more things, im sure he has had hormone levels tested but i was wondering if theres anything else in the hormones that could be causing this, someone said to me there could be a growth somewhere on his adrenal glands or something, thats got me really worried now! As for him bouncing off the walls and making too much noise hes doing that already! Lol hes so full of energy, this doesnt seem to be affecting him at all although when i look back he was totally different before it was diagnosed, he was very quiet and just lazed around alot, now hes a normal 9 year old. Oh just one more question, i was wondering does high temperature affect blood pressure? We wanted to go on holiday but i was wondering if the heat would make it bad for him? Oh and one other thing ive remember, whenever he goes swimming recently he cant stay in the pool for very long normally about 5 or 10 mins or so before his lips turn blue and he shivers terribly, i get him out warm him up and hes fine, gets back in and it happens again even in the hot weather, i have told the consultant but he doesnt seem to be that bothered about it but i dont think its right

 
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