Low Blood Pressure Symptoms

Symptoms of Low Blood Pressure:

Symptoms of low blood pressure may include:

  • Blurry vision
  • Confusion
  • Dizziness
  • Fainting
  • Light-headedness
  • Sleepiness
  • Weakness.
  • When there is insufficient blood pressure to deliver blood to the coronary arteries (the arteries that supply blood to the heart’s muscle), a person may develop chest pain or even a heart attack.
  • When insufficient blood is delivered to the kidneys, the kidneys fail to eliminate wastes from the body, for example, urea (BUN) and creatinine, and increases in their levels in the blood occur.
  • Shock is a life-threatening condition where persistently low blood pressure causes organs such as kidney(s), liver, heart, lung, and brain to fail rapidly

Is low blood pressure good or bad for your health?

People who have lower blood pressures have a lower risk of stroke,heart and kidney disease. Athletes, people who exercise regularly, people who maintain ideal body weight, and non-smokers tend to have lower blood pressures. Therefore, low blood pressure is advantageous as long as it is not low enough to cause symptoms and damage to the body organs.

Signs of Low Blood Pressure:

The doctor will examine you and try to determine the cause of low blood pressure. Your vital signs (temperature, pulse, rate of breathing, blood pressure) will be checked frequently. The common question which doctor will ask are:

  • What is your normal blood pressure?
  • Have you had any recent illness, accident, or injury?
  • What other symptoms do you have?
  • Have you been eating and drinking normally?
  • Did you faint or become less alert?
  • Do you feel dizzy or light-headed when standing or sitting after lying down?
  • What medications do you take?

Tests for Low Blood Pressure:

  • Complete blood count (CBC), including blood differential
  • ECG (to detect Pericarditis, abnormal heart beats, heart attck)
  • Urinalysis
  • Blood and urine cultures to check for infection
  • X-ray of the abdomen and chest.
  • Blood electrolyte measurements may show dehydration and mineral depletion, renal failure (kidney failure), or acidosis (excess acid in the blood).
  • Cortisol levels can be measured to diagnose Addison’s disease.
  • Ultrasound examinations of the leg veins and CT scans of the chest can detect deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism.
  • Holter monitor recordings are used to diagnose intermittent episodes of abnormal heart rhythms. . A Holter monitor is a continuous recording of the heart’s rhythm for 24 hours that often is used to chart intermittent episodes of bradycardia or tachycardia.ECG may miss if abnormal rhythms occur intermittently
  • Patient-activated event recorder. If the episodes of bradycardia or tachycardia are occasional, a 24-hour Holter recording may not capture these sporadic episodes. So  a patient can wear a patient-activated event recorder for up to four weeks. The patient presses a button to start the recording when he or she senses the onset of an abnormal heart rhythm or symptoms possibly caused by low blood pressure. The doctor then analyzes the recordings at a later date to recognize the abnormal heart beats.
  • Echocardiograms are examinations of the structures of the heart using ultrasound. Echocardiograms can detect pericardial fluid, the extent of heart muscle damage from heart attacks, diseases of the heart valves.
  • Tilt-Table tests are used to evaluate patients having postural hypotension or syncope due to abnormal function of the autonomic nerves. During a tilt-table test, the patient lies on an examining table with an intravenous infusion administered while the heart rate and blood pressure are monitored. The table then is tilted upright for 15 minutes to 45 minutes. Heart rate and blood pressure are monitored every few minutes whether he develops postural hypotension or not.

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