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I'm new from the UK -some help please

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Old 11-25-2004, 01:25 PM   #1
Join Date: Nov 2004
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AnnaM HB User
Question I'm new from the UK -some help please


Hello, I'm from the UK and found this messageboard such a help! I have suffered over the years with Anxiety and depression, now to my list is high blood pressure. I am 45 and when I've been to see my Doctor my pressure has been way too high. One thing that worries me is I do have anxiety, plus I may even have 'white coat' syndrome?
I have been put on a drug called Bendroflumethiaxaide a diuretic at 2.5mg a day. I had my pressure measured at a local pharmacy and the first reading was so high: 188/101 then, after a few minutes it was done again and it went down to 149/104. At home I do my pressure and its 130/80
Has anyone else had this, really up whilst out then it can come down alot later?

I've only been on the drug for about 10 days, do a lot of folk have to have a combination of drugs to lower the pressure? Or is mine sheer anxiety?
Any input really would be so welcome.
All the best

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Old 11-25-2004, 11:29 PM   #2
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Hampshire, England
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*Paul HB User
Re: I'm new from the UK -some help please

Hi Anne,
I am also from the UK. It certainly sounds as though you suffer from White Coat, but that isn't to say your readings are not still a little high whilst at home. Do you have your own BP monitor, because in my opinion it is a must. Usually the doc will monitor your BP before putting you straight onto meds, i was monitored for around 6months to determine whether the cause was anxiety or really high BP, perhaps it is because you had a reading in the 180's. Has your doc done a blood test, ECG and a 24hr BP monitor. This tests seems a must prior to meds (in my opinion). If you said that you were getting readings around 130/80, these are not to bad. It is confusing because of the doctors varying opinion, all agree that 120/80 or less is optimum for readings but how strongly they feel you should reach these readings vary. My first doc was happy as long as i had readings below 140/90 (Stage 1 Hypertension), i myself was not, if i must be on meds i want to see better readings than just being within the prehypertension range or high normal range. I was just under these figures and he found that acceptable. Just be luck i saw another doc the other day and she felt that because i am only 30yrs i should be aiming for lower around 130/80 (i had to agree with her). On the other side of things i have heard views where doctors are still concerned with a persons BP when they are in the 120's. Not that i am saying this for a fact, but it seems that greater research has been carried out in the States and they have learn't to take it more seriously. Again, in my opinion i feel doctors over here have a level should reach for your BP and that's it, not that much more though about the casue so long as you are reaching these targets.

Anyway, i wouldn't worry to much just keep a record of your BP at home and present it to the doc's on my next appointement. I and the doc feels this to be the most effective method to really give them the feel of what your BP is like, also determine truely how white coat effects you. To be honest i have been monitoring my own BP now for 18 months and have been going to the docs every 3 months in this time. I first suffered white coat, but after the first reading at the doc's there pretty much the same as the BP i am getting at home. I would make sure your doc takes 3 reading when you see him, so you really get the feel of your numbers.

Good luck

Old 11-26-2004, 12:46 PM   #3
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 5
AnnaM HB User
Re: I'm new from the UK -some help please

Hi Paul - Thanks so much for your view on the matter, I found it most helpful, I have got a really good monitor and today I did a reading and it was 124/72 and my heart rate was 60. The lowest reading was:121/79 and that was at about 2pm!!!!
My parents never suffered with hypertension infact my Dad is 90 and doesn't suffer problems with it???
I do however suffer bad with anxiety mainly at night, my heart rate really goes up to over 80 beats. I read the boards at night so any other thoughts you have please let me know.

Old 11-26-2004, 02:19 PM   #4
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zuzu8 HB Userzuzu8 HB Userzuzu8 HB Userzuzu8 HB Userzuzu8 HB Userzuzu8 HB User
Re: I'm new from the UK -some help please

P.S. Just wanted to add something regarding the potassium issue:

It's recommended that your doctor gives you a blood test, especially when you first go on a thiazide diuretic, to monitor the level of potassium in the blood. If this level is too low, potassium supplements may be required if upping dietary potassium isn't sufficient.

zuzu xx

Old 11-26-2004, 09:30 PM   #5
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Re: I'm new from the UK -some help please

Hi Anna,

I want to second the recommendation to take many readings at rest at home and record results for your doctor. I'd suggest you make a chart and include not only date, time, and BP readings, but add a "notes" column. There you can add things which may have influenced your readings. For example "not feeling well today," "just had argument with spouse," "only had two hours of sleep last night," "mother-in-law was here today." This record can be quite helpful to you in identifying how closely your BP is related to things which cause you anxiety, as well as other factors. You might want to see how your blood pressure changes over the day or how greatly it changes after meals. Decide what you want to learn from your readings, and keep records accordingly.

Old 11-27-2004, 03:05 PM   #6
Join Date: Nov 2004
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AnnaM HB User
Re: I'm new from the UK -some help please

Thanks for the input and great information! I really don't want to be on extra BP pills if a lot of it is due to anxiety. Today at total rest my BP was :111/81 and my pulse 59. Have to go back next week to my GP and will do a full list of my readings and at what time of the day etc.....
Are diuretics the oldest method of treating BP or is it Beta Blockers?
I know they give Beta B's for anxiety problems, I also occasionally suffer with migrain.
In the US what are the most expensive BP pills to be prescribed?
Thanks again

Old 11-28-2004, 05:58 AM   #7
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Lenin HB UserLenin HB UserLenin HB UserLenin HB UserLenin HB UserLenin HB User
Re: I'm new from the UK -some help please

I echo what the others have said but let me prepare you for a VERY possible future scenario: You walk into the doctors office after a hassle day, his office is chilly and his stethescope like an ice cube. He takes your BP while you sit half naked, feet dangling over the edge of his examining table, wondering desperately what numbers he's going to get...seconds tick by: YOUR NUMBERS ARE 160/100.

Now the fun starts with the battling:
"I want you to add a beta-blocker"
"But doctor, at HOME my BP readings are excellent."
THEN he looks at you like you are a poor addled soul and says something like "But clearly under everyday stress your BP runs higher."
You are behind the eight ball, and unless you have a good BP history log and are willing to fight him on his own ground, you are doomed to more and more meds!
(He might mention "white coat hypertension" but don't worry, he REALLY doesn't believe it exisits- only uncooperative, quarrelsome, hypertensive patients!
This is a sad state of affairs but, I'm afraid itt's the norm.

IF you can do proper battle, and stay on ONLY the thiazide and continue with good readings at home, you are on the best treatment there is.
(Eat the bananas and orange juice...and take 250 mg Magnesium from some supplemental source.)

Good Luck with the JOUST!

Last edited by Lenin; 11-28-2004 at 06:00 AM.

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