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Last Updated: Sep 04, 2019
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Low Blood Pressure: Treatment, Procedure, Cost And Side Effects

What is a Dangerously Low Blood Pressure? What are the Symptoms of Low Blood Pressure? What are the Causes of Low Blood Pressure? What are the Safety Precautions For Low Blood Pressure? How Do You Test For Low Blood Pressure? What are the Treatment for Low Blood Pressure? How is the Treatment of Low Blood Pressure Done? Who is Eligible for the Treatment of Low BP? Who is not Eligible for the Treatment Low BP? Are There Any Side Effects? What are the Post-treatment Guidelines? How Long Does it Take to Recover? What is the Price of the Treatment of Low BP in India? Are the Results of the Treatment Permanent? What are the Alternatives to the Treatment of Low BP? How to Increase Blood Pressure Naturally? What Foods are Good for Low Blood Pressure?

What is a Dangerously Low Blood Pressure?

Low blood pressure is otherwise called hypotension and it causes the inadequate blood supply to the main organs of the body. Many symptoms would develop due to low blood pressure. A blood pressure reading has two numbers namely systolic and diastolic.

The upper reading is systolic pressure, i.e. the pressure in the arteries is monitored when the heart beats and fills the arteries with blood. The lower reading is diastolic, i.e. monitoring the pressure in the arteries when the heart rests between the beats.

The normal blood pressure is 120/80 mmHg whereas the low blood pressure is 90/60 mmHg. However, the pressure varies from person to person depends on the diseases, medication and age etc. Untreated low blood pressure can be life threatening and can even leads to Coma. If one is constantly experiencing the symptoms like shallow breaths, fatigue, drowsiness, shocks, rapid pulse, pale skin and confusion, it is advised to get in emergency help as these are the signs of low blood pressure that can be harmful.

What are the Symptoms of Low Blood Pressure?

Symptoms of low blood pressure are as follows:

  • When there is an insufficient supply of blood to the organs, it may temporarily or permanently be damaged. Depends on the organ, the symptoms are noted. If the brain cells do not receive enough oxygen, then dizziness, light headedness or even faintness can be experienced by the person. Some people may experience, nausea, vomiting, palpitation, thirst, shivering, fatigue, blurry vision, lack of concentration.
  • Chest pain or even heart attack may occur when there is no sufficient supply of blood to the coronary arteries.
  • When kidneys receive insufficient blood, they fail to eliminate wastes from the body and thus increase urea, creatinine levels in the blood.
  • Shock is a dangerous condition where there is persistent low pressure causing organs such as heart, kidney, liver, lung and brain to fail quickly.

What are the Causes of Low Blood Pressure?

Causes of low blood pressure are as follows:

Postural Hypotension

Changes in a posture like from standing to sitting or lying can lead to a downfall in blood pressure but in such case, the blood pressure gets back to normal level quickly. It is mostly seen in older people especially diabetic people can experience such problem when their autonomic nervous system gets damaged.

Heart Ailments

Heart valve problem, low heartbeat rate, heart failure may lead to severe low blood pressure because the heart cannot pump enough blood to maintain the pressure up.

Low blood pressure after meals:

Sometimes, blood pressure falls down after immediate meals and thus causing dizziness, faintness. It is very common in high blood pressure, diabetic, older and Parkinson’s patients. This is because after eating our intestines need more blood supply to digest the food. The heart starts beating faster and the blood vessels in other parts of the body narrow down to support in maintaining blood pressure. Lying down after eating, reducing carbohydrate intake and eating smaller meals frequently helps in mitigating this problem. Coughing and swallowing may also cause low blood pressure due to the vagus nerve stimulation.

Other than the above,

  • Shock with dehydration and weakness
  • Infection in the blood
  • Diseases such as thyroid, adrenal insufficiency, and diabetes
  • A severe allergic reaction called anaphylactic shock
  • A huge amount of blood loss through injury
  • Medicines like beta-blockers, nitroglycerin, antidepressants, diuretics, etc.,

What are the Safety Precautions For Low Blood Pressure?

Changing our lifestyle model is quite sufficient to save from low blood pressure.

  • Drink water sufficiently to keep the body hydrated as dehydration is the key cause of low blood pressure.
  • Do not get exposed to the hot environment. While exposing to heat, it dilates the blood vessels, increases sweating thus leads to low blood pressure ultimately. Do avoid physical exertion when you feel it is severely hot.
  • Do not consume alcohol since it has the tendency of lowering blood pressure.
  • If you are a prolonged stander, then drink water frequently.
  • Do avoid keeping crossed legs while sitting or sleeping since this manner decreases blood into the lower part of the body and drops blood pressure significantly.
  • In every two hours have a meal or snack as the body requires a balanced diet. Make sure to take nutritious intake to keep yourself healthy.

How Do You Test For Low Blood Pressure?

Firstly, the physician will check you clinically by understanding your pulse rate, symptoms and medical history. Then, he will advise you to do other tests such as

  • ECG (Electrocardiogram) to measure heart rhythm and rate
  • Echocardiogram to visualize the heart valves
  • Blood tests for anemia and blood sugar levels check out
  • If you experience low blood pressure while standing or due to faulty brain signals, a tilt table test can evaluate how your body reacts to the posture changes.
  • Sometimes heart problems cause issues in lowering blood pressure. A Stress test is advised and you will be made to walk on a treadmill or do some exercises. When your heart is working harder, its function will be monitored with ECG or Echo and at the same time, your pressure is also checked.

What are the Treatment for Low Blood Pressure?

Generally, lifestyle changes are recommended for low blood pressure such as

  • Eating a diet with extra salt
  • Drinking more fluids
  • Regular exercises to improve blood flow
  • Avoid straining and heavy lifting
  • Using stockings to reduce the blood flow to the lower body

If these measures do not help out you, you may be put in medications.

  • Midodrine: It helps to activate receptors on the smallest arteries and veins to increase blood pressure. This drug helps in increasing blood pressure in people with standing blood pressure, postural hypotension.

  • Fludrocortisone: It is widely used. It promotes sodium retention in the kidneys which leads to edema that is necessary to improve blood pressure. But, it also causes potassium depletion. So, when you take this drug, you should comply with potassium supplements

  • Too little amount of folate in the body has low blood pressure effects. Hence, eat folate-rich foods such as liver, asparagus, garbanzo beans to improve your pressure.
  • When you have a decreased amount of Vitamin B12, it might lead to anemia which in turn brings down blood pressure. Eat fortified cereals, eggs, and beef to improve Vitamin B12.

How is the Treatment of Low Blood Pressure Done?

Low blood pressure in itself is not a serious condition. Often it can be a symptom of another health problem. The underlying conditions differ from person to person. Therefore, it is necessary for the doctor to identify the real cause of your blood pressure problem.

First, fix an appointment with your doctor; notify him/her about your medical history, your age, the symptoms you are currently experiencing, and the reasons for the occurrence of the blood pressure drop. The doctor will conduct a thorough physical examination of the concerned patient. Then she or he will make the patient undergo a series of tests where the patient will be asked to stand up suddenly after lying down for some time. During this time, the doctor will take the pulse rate and will check the blood pressure levels.

If the doctor feels necessary then she or he may perform an ECG or an electrocardiogram in order to check the pulse rate and also an echocardiogram/ultrasound test in order to see the condition of the heart and take pictures of it for later reference. She or he might also take blood test samples from the patient in order to check for anemia or any issues with your blood sugar level.

In order to check for irregular heart rate the doctor may ask the patient to get an ECG or a Holter monitor done. An exercise test or stress test may also be advised. In certain cases, a ‘tilt table’ test is performed for a patient experiencing postural hypotension in order to assess the response of the body to unexpected changes in movements or position.

Who is Eligible for the Treatment of Low BP?

A person who is experiencing shock or symptoms of low blood pressure like feeling lightheaded or dizzy on an off and on basis. Although chronic low blood pressure might not be a serious health issue in itself, it can be a symptom of a much severe underlying medical condition.

Who is not Eligible for the Treatment Low BP?

All those people who are experiencing the symptoms of low blood pressure mentioned above do not need to go visit a doctor.

Are There Any Side Effects?

The side effects of taking flodrocortisone include heart failure, muscle weakness, expansion of the heart, easy bruising, headaches, light-headedness and sudden increase in blood glucose levels.

What are the Post-treatment Guidelines?

The doctor may advise you to increase the amount of salt in your diet because sodium increases pressure drastically. Also, increase the quantity of your fluid intake daily in order to prevent dehydration by drinking lots of water.

You may also be advised to wear stockings that put on compression on your legs by pooling the blood. This can help to reduce inflammation and pain. You may also be prescribed certain medications such as fludrocortisone and midodrine/orvaten help to treat the problem of hypotension or low blood pressure.

How Long Does it Take to Recover?

With proper rest, medication and water (for drinking, in case the low blood pressure occurred as a result of dehydration) you can recover within a few hours.

What is the Price of the Treatment of Low BP in India?

In India one strip of 2.5 mg of Midodrine costs about 2,3000 Rupees, an ECG test costs about 250 Rupees in India, and an ultrasound test can cost you about Rs. 1000- 4000 in India.

Are the Results of the Treatment Permanent?

The results of the treatment depends on well you adhere to the post-treatment guidelines. If you can look after your daily diet and also identity the reasons behind your sudden blood pressure levels you can prevent the sudden attacks from occurring on getting up after lying for some time.

What are the Alternatives to the Treatment of Low BP?

Alternatives for low blood pressure problems include certain home remedies such as increasing the daily water consumption level and cutting down on alcohol which will help to tackle the dehydration levels, having a balance diet which incorporates nutritional items such as fruits, veggies, whole grains and protein such as chicken and fish. Other remedies include gently moving from one place to another instead of getting up suddenly or moving too fast. Avoid sitting with your legs crossed and try to consume small portion of really low-carb foods. Also, keep eating small portions of food throughout the day to prevent the blood pressure levels from dropping suddenly.

How to Increase Blood Pressure Naturally?

Certain foods definitely help in increasing blood pressure naturally and they are:

  • Too little amount of folate in the body has low blood pressure effects. Hence, eat folate-rich foods such as liver, asparagus, garbanzo beans to improve your pressure.

  • When you have a decreased amount of Vitamin B12, it might lead to anemia which in turn brings down blood pressure. Eat fortified cereals, eggs, and beef to improve Vitamin B12.

  • Licorice helps in reducing the effect of aldosterone, the hormone which is responsible to regulate the salt impact on the body. Drinking licorice tea improves your blood pressure level.

What Foods are Good for Low Blood Pressure?

Food supplements that are good for low blood pressure are as follows:

  • Olives: Olive is rich in vitamin E, copper and Iron. Since it is slightly salty taste, it helps in improving the blood pressure. Salty foods are safe for the people who have a sudden pressure dip.
  • Coffee: It temporarily and immediately boosts the blood pressure. When you feel giddy, dizzy, take a cup of tea or coffee and it will spike blood pressure by inducing the cardiovascular system and boosting the heart rate.
  • Tulsi Leaves: Tulsi leaves have high levels of magnesium, potassium, vitamin C that helps in regulating blood pressure. Chew at least six tulsi leaves every morning to reinstate normal blood pressure. Presence of Eugenol is an antioxidant keeps the blood pressure in control and lowers cholesterol levels.

Popular Questions & Answers

Taking thyronorm 37.5 mcg since two months, current tsh is 4.28 (lab cut off 4.2 ). Is there any need to alter the dose at the moment by consulting a doctor. Blood pressure is 145/95 (taking cilacar 10 twice)

DHMS (Diploma in Homeopathic Medicine and Surgery)
Homeopathy Doctor, Hyderabad
Your bp is quite high. It is a silent and harmful disease which affects all organs. You need personal examination and prescription medicine to be taken on long term basis. Please consult your local physician.

Hello, I am 20 and im a woman. I have headache (forehead and side mostly) and earache for more than a year. I went to a doctor for my ears and tey turn out to be healthy and clean. I have intense anxiety and because of my depression I sat at home which means lack of movement for a year and half, which means I missed a lit of sunlight. I had breathing issues, but my x-ray is normal and my lungs are healthy, then I had heart pain and tachycardia, it turned out I have sinus tachycardia because of anxiety I guess, but overall my heart is also fine and my doctor told me that I have anxiety, then I did many blood tests and they only thing that I have an issue with is cholesterol, feritin and iron, but again not something dramatic. My doctors say is chronic cold or anxiety but I can not take it anymore. My pathologist told me that is anxiety or cold. I drink teas, I now try to exercise and run and go to sunlight, I drink water and my urine is clean and my eyes also clean (since they say eyes so your health). I have intense panic attacks, before a week I was dizzy and I had eye disturbance because of my anxiety, I lost my appetite for 3 days, however now I am doing better, but my headaches are intense, especially when I sit, I feel my neck tight and my side forehead and temple feel tight and sometimes cold sometimes achy, I wake up with earaches and a lot of dry mucus in my nose, I don't have thyroid, but my cardiologist told me that my thyroid was a little bit swollen but nothing to worry (i had throat pain at that time, now rarely, and when I eat I feel great), I don't understand. My body weight is normal. I don't understand, I can not take it anymore.

MD Medicine, DM Neurology
Neurologist, Panchkula
Dear lybrate-user, you are having severe anxiety and the underlying problem is not clear. I can certainly tell you that whatever may be the reason it needs to be treated as early as possible. There will be definite some improvement in your conditi...

Sir mera bp normal nhi rehta hai abhi tak koi medicine nhi li hai proper sirf ek medicine di hai Dr. ney telmisartan 40 mg 5 mg amlodipine mujhe jan na hai ke koi dikkat nhi aye hogi mere baki organ m bp ki vaja se kidney mai kahi dikkat aa rkhi ho koi kidney specialist Dr. suggest kre.

Ayurvedic Doctor,
Devender, continue with your medicines. along with sme try to take some ayurvedic treatment where cause of this high bo will be determined and then resolving that cause. high bo can be because of different pathological and psychological causes. fo...

I am suffering from lichen planus pigmentation for the past four years. Darkening is becoming worse than before. Consulted doctors and they are giving topical medicines like a ret hc, kojivit, melalite and exazel. And they suggesting me for chemical peeling. Kindly provide a solution.

MBBS, Diploma in Dermatology
Dermatologist, Pune
Hi since lichen 0lanus is a chronic and autoimmune skin condition. It takes time to get cured. Recurrance is also common if you have any trigger like itching scratching or injury. You need to contact good dermatologist. And requaired check up to w...

I am facing anxiety and fear problem if I check my bp myself in home it will be normal likely 135/90 but even I go to doctor clinic if doctor check my bp it's go up likely to 170/100 and heart beet also fast. For bp I am taking telma am 40.

M.A.(H)Psychology, PG Diploma in Child Guidance and Family Therapy
Psychologist, Noida
1.Use Deep Breathing Deep breathing is another effective way to relieve stress and anxiety. It helps you with physical symptoms such as shallow breathing and rapid heart rate, and it also helps with controlling your thoughts. When you practice dee...
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