"My blood pressure constantly hovers around 85/55 mm Hg. Should I be worried? Is it too low?," a KidneyBuzz.com reader asked. You may be surprised to learn that there is no specific boundary for Low Blood Pressure. It does not exist. In fact, mildly Low Blood Pressure (Hypotension) may be a sign of good health and a decreased risk of Heart Disease. Continually Low Blood Pressure or a sudden drop in Blood Pressure, however, can lead to falling, fainting, stroke, induced seizures, heart damage, and in extreme cases, death.
Your Doctors will tell you that ideal Blood Pressure ranges for Chronic Kidney Disease patients are 130 to 159 mm HG systolic (the top number) over 70 to 89 diastolic (the bottom number). The guidelines also suggest "you want Diabetics to have [systolic pressure] under 130," said researcher Rhonda M. Cooper-DeHoff, Associate Professor of Pharmacy and Medicine.
Persistent Hypotension can affect your quality of life. Have you noticed? It can cause dizziness, nausea, fatigue, blurred vision, shortness of breath, clamminess, and prevents you from concentrating. Imagine having a combination of these symptoms while driving after a Dialysis treatment, or once a Low Blood Sugar "spell" hits you. It could be extremely dangerous?
Sudden dips in your Blood Pressure are no better. A change of just 20 mm Hg — a drop from 110 systolic to 90 systolic, for example — can cause dizziness and fainting. Now if your pressure plunges because of uncontrolled bleeding, taking too much fluid off during Dialysis, severely Low Blood Sugar levels, severe infections or allergic reactions, the matter could be life-threatening.
We did not write this to scare you. It was written to help. So if you are experiencing any of the symptoms listed above or believe that your blood pressure has dipped, it is recommended that you lay down with your feet above your heart, drink fluid, and avoid future Hypotension triggers like standing-up for long periods of time or getting up too fast.
If you are finding that your Hypotension is happening more often, then it is time for you to talk to your Healthcare Teams. Discuss with them about adjusting your diet, altering your medication regimen (possibly lowering dosages of certain meds), and wearing compression stockings if varicose veins or leg swelling is a contributing factor. Also, consider asking about Blood Pressure raising medications such as Fludrocortisone (Florinef) and Midodrine (ProAmatine).
Recommended Reading: The Unspoken Dangers Of Driving On Dialysis And Necessary Precautions
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"Low Blood Pressure." Http://www.heart.org/. American Heart Association, Inc.
"When Is Low Blood Pressure Too Low?" Http://www.everydayhealth.com/. Everyday Health, Inc.
"Low Blood Pressure (hypotension)." Http://www.mayoclinic.org/. Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research.
Doheny, Kathleen. "Blood Pressure and Diabetes: How Low Should You Go?" WebMD.com. WebMD