Information about Hypotension
We have to know about the Hypotension
- Low blood pressure occurs when the rate of arterial blood flow is inadequate to meet the metabolic needs.
- Hypotension is the medical term for low blood pressure(less than 90/60).
Causes of Hypotension
- Hypovolemic Shock: It results from loss of blood, plasma, fluids, haemorrhage, burns, vomiting, diarrhea
- Cardiogenic Shock: Pump Failure (Myocardial Infarction)
- Obstructive Shock: Tension pneumothorax, pericardial disease
- Distributive Shock: Septic Shock
The symptoms of low blood pressure include lightheadedness, dizziness, and fainting. These symptoms are most prominent when individuals go from the lying or sitting position to the standing position (orthostatic hypotension).
- Low blood pressure that causes an inadequate flow of blood to the body’s organs can cause strokes, heart attacks, and kidney failure. The most severe form is shocking.
Do’s and Don’ts of Hypotension
- Take Rest
- Lie down flat
- No activity to be done by the patient
Signs & Symptoms of Hypotension
- Cool Extremities
- Weak or absent pulse
- BP- 10-20mm low than the normal pressure
- Increased pulse rate
- The patient may be normal/restless, agitated and confused or lethargic, sometimes comatose
Medical advice for Hypotension
- Immediately when the above signs present
Risk factors of Hypotension
People with family members who have high blood pressure
- Pregnant women
- Women who take birth control pills
- People over the age of 35
- People who are overweight or obese
- People who are not active
- People who drink alcohol excessively
- People who eat too many fatty foods or foods with too much salt
- People who have sleep apnea
Treatment for Hypotension
- For many people, chronic low blood pressure can be effectively treated with diet and lifestyle changes.
Depending on the cause of your symptoms, your doctor may tell you to increase your blood pressure by making these simple changes:
- Eat a diet higher in salt.
- Drink lots of nonalcoholic fluids.
- Limit alcoholic beverages.
- Drink more fluids during hot weather and while sick with a viral illness, such as a cold or the flu.
- Have your doctor evaluate your prescription and over-the-counter medications to see if any of them are causing your symptoms.
- Get regular exercise to promote blood flow.
- Be careful when rising from lying down or sitting. To help improve circulation, pump your feet and ankles a few times before standing up. Then proceed slowly. When getting out of bed, sit upright on the edge of the bed for a few minutes before standing.
- Elevate the head of your bed at night by placing bricks or blocks under the head of the bed.
- Avoid heavy lifting.
- Avoid straining while on the toilet.
- Avoid standing still in place for long periods of time.
- Avoid prolonged exposure to hot water, such as hot showers and spas. If you get dizzy, sit down. It may be helpful to keep a chair or stool in the shower in case you need to sit; to help prevent injury, use a nonslip chair or stool designed for use in showers and bathtubs.
- To avoid problems with low blood pressure and lessen episodes of dizziness after meals, try eating smaller, more frequent meals. Cut back on carbohydrates. Rest after eating. Avoid taking drugs to lower blood pressure before meals.
- If needed, use elastic support (compression) stockings that cover the calf and thigh. These may help restrict blood flow to the legs, thus keeping more blood in the upper body.
Self-care for Hypotension
- Eat more salt
- Avoid alcoholic beverages
- Discuss medications with a doctor
- Cross legs while sitting
- Drink water
- Eat small meals frequently
- Wear compression stockings
- Avoid sudden position change
Investigations for Hypotension
- ECG, X-ray, Electrolyte