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Hypertension !!!

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High blood pressure is often called the "silent killer" and can cause a number of medical problems. But what is hypertension? And what types do doctors define?...
Hypertension can be caused by a number of underlying medical conditions. Which ones? Are you at risk of developing high blood pressure?...
High blood pressure often manifests no symptoms, but can seriously damage the body. So how can you tell if you're experiencing hypertension, or not? More here....
Please help! If you have any ideas.
First off, I am 26 and 6'4" and fairly active(was). Great, loving wife and two boys 7month old and 6yr old. These past few weeks of july have been HELL.
I am in fear of something catastrophic happening to me.

Here is basically my story of how everything has rolled out since mid June. Prior to then, I was living a normal, healthy life with my family.

Thursday June 14th, I felt fine other than a tickle in my throat. At bed time I was a bit concerned as my wife had strep a couple weeks prior. I then took cut in half one of her 875mg amoxicillin pills and consumed.437mg
Friday the 15th, I took the other half of amoxicillin and a full (approx 1312.5 mg total). I became feeling a bit weird, so I purged what I could. I remember feeling excited and worried about needing to go to the ER as I have never has amoxicillin as long as I can remember in my life.

The week immediately following Fathers Day 2007, I had experienced a bit more stress than usual. I had noticed that I was enduring some pretty extreme heartburn and headaches all during the week. Friday the 22nd, I had felt pretty different in terms of experiencing vertigo, stomach aches, elevated level of anxiousness and large lack of appetite.
for the headaches, i would take Ibuprofin.

June 24th we went to breakfast for my brother’s birthday and I recall after eating my meal, feeling weak and ill.

Week of June 25th, had heartburn and headaches along with lack of appetite. Anytime I sat down to eat, I would take a few bites and immediately begin feeling very weak and tired and needing to lie down.
Any sliver of an appetite I might have had would diminish.
I had lost approx 8 lbs throughout this time.
Concerned of my health, I called Wednesday, June 27th and scheduled an appointment with my physician.

June 28th, 11:00 am
Met with Dr. Foote of Tanner Clinic
The nurse took my blood pressure reading and i remember clearly her saying it was normal. it was 122/75. This is the last time that my bp would be right.
I had explained the issues that I had been experiencing the couple weeks prior. I had been experiencing daily heartburn and headache. I had been enduring a little more stress with personal life than usual. What triggered me making the appt with Dr. foote was the symptom of lost appetite and when I did get an appetite, I would eat a couple bites and immediately become disinterested in food and became tired, dizzy, and weak.
He found that I had “cobble stone” look in my throat and swelling behind the ears. His diagnosis showed that I may have an allergy of some sort irritating my sinuses and causing drainage down the back of my throat causing the “cobblestone” appearance and potentially explaining the sore stomach.
Dr. Foote then took my blood for bloodtest and prescribed Rhinocort, allegra and Duratab?(Guaifenex)
I took medication as prescribed.

Friday, June 29th – Approx 10pm (turning point)
Had been on car ride with my wife, stopped for food at the Taco Bell then ventured home. Approximately 30 minutes later, I began feeling nauseated, hyperactive and really tense and palpitations were beginning. I never felt like this before. It was scaring me.

My wife dropped me off at my car and I followed her home . I had a hard time concentrating on the road and had to pull over at one time because I couldn’t breath right and the palpitations were getting worse.
We got home and I tried relaxing. While lying in bed, then it started up again even worse.
My wife took me to the local Wal-Mart to try their BP Monitor, at which it read 175/100.
I told her we needed to go to the doctor.
She took me to the Emergency room with palpitations and hypertension, had to focus on breathing. Highest blood pressure reading was approx 216/120mmHg.

They took urine sample, EKG test and blood test. Doctors said that the results of the tests looked ok.

The ER Doctor said I most likely have GERD or severe acid reflux that is irritating my esophagus, causing it to flare up irritating my nerves with my heart/nervous system triggering palpitations.

I then had been sent home with Holter monitor for 24 hours and a prescription for 40mg a day of Protonix.
Results of Holter monitor were to be reviewed by my familt doc.


Sunday, July 1st
I Returned to ER with palpitations and hypertension. The doctors took EKG reading and blood sugar reading and found nothing alarming.
The doctor basically said to me, "if it were something serious, you'd be dead by now". I couldnt believe this guy. He then told me that I may want to visit a cardiologist to review results of Holter device and overall health. Was released with prescription of Antivert antidizzy meds.

Monday, July 2nd
Made appt with Cardiologist July 3rd 10:00 am.
Visited with Dr. Stewart as usual doc was out of town.
Was there for follow up on symptoms and get his advise. I felt very tense and had blood pressure checked and it was 160/100. I had been in bed all day.
Dr Stewart recommended that I meet with the cardiologist to see what he might have to say then decide if the nest step would be to see a GI.
I was prescribed anxiety meds Ativan. Have taken and felt a bit more relaxed.

Tuesday, July 3rd
I visited Cardiologist, Had blood pressure checked and felt tense. it was only 145/95. I spoke with Dr. about the issues I had been having leading me to his office. I had EKG taken and was told to take part in 24 hour urinalysis.

Thursday, July 5th
I turned in the 24hour urinalysis Medical Lab.
I then went to cardiologits office to get an impromptu blood pressure check. Results approx were 143/85.

Monday, July 9th
I stopped into cardiologist office for an impromptu blood pressure test and the results were 173/104. I felt anxious and tense. The nurse had me wait there until she can seek advice from my Dr.
the dr. gave me samples of 160mg Diovan.
I took Diovan and home and work from there.
Sometime in the afternoon, I found began feeling flush, my face was red and hot, my mouth was extremely dry and I couldn’t drink enough water. I looked up info on Protonix and read through all of the side effects. I read about the usual, diarrhea, upset stomach, etc… then read a little more and found that there were more uncommon side effects that if encountered, you should notify your physician.
I read that Protonix may cause hyperglycemia and symptoms included flushing, dry mouth, increased thirst. I called my physician’s office on two separate occasions and left voicemails on both explaining my concern of these side effects. I finally received a call from my physicians nurse at approx 8:30 pm. I mentioned that I was worried about continuing Protonix and that I probably wouldn’t. She agreed and said that she would consult Dr. Foote about a possible alternative to Protonix and call me back.
i hadnt heard back .

I also called and made an appt with Gastroenterologist for June 20th.

Tuesday, July 10th
I am at 237lbs. I took Diovan and Ativan as prescribed. I felt blood pressure go down and tested multiple times. I went to work and began feeling sharp pains across my upper back, feeling extremely tired and intermittent tightness of chest. I made it through the day, questioning the side effects of Diovan.

Thursday, July 12th
I had been in bed all day, as usual. Not feeling the greatest. throughout this whole ordeal, i have lost a ton of weigh and have had bad bouts of diarreah on the mornings. Sometimes starting at 3am, 5am, 7am and it typically appears yellow and mucousy. I have been concentrating on eating healthy. I have been able to eat oatmeal, apples, banannas, ensure and water. I take a multivitimin also.
My wife came home from work and wanted to go to the mall, she asked if I would like to go and I said sure, as I was feeling ok.
Being that i hadnt had my blood pressure meds that day or had protinix for a few days, i should have stayed home.

We ventured to the mall, and about halfway there, i began having another attack. It feels like it is triggered by my stomach or somoething in my abdomen getting agitated by a bumpy road or vibration. I got to a point where I wanted to jump out of the car in mid traffic and lay down on some grass by the road. My heart was pounding and my ears were swelling, i could feel my heartbeat in my head and body. I knew my blood pressure was high.

Finally, my wife found a place to pull over and I layed in the grass for a few minutes trying to calm down. She basically said, get in, we're going to the ER. But this time, the ER of a different hospital.

We get there and the nurse runs the typical checks. I emphasized the fact that my stomach has been hurting. right in the middle sternum area it hurts.

They get me in a bed and hook me up to the monitor machines and take blood and urin samples. Even a stool sample to check for blood.
Then xrays of my back and abdomen.

They said that all tests came back okay and that I might have an pretty bad ulcer either caused by ibuprofin use or H Pylori, thus causing the hypertension. I would need the attention of a GI doc. I was prescribed Pepcid in place of the protonix and ambian to help me sleep with my rotting gut.

I explained to th er doc that the cardiologist had me do a 24hr urinalysis and that the lab of this particular hospital has the results. So the ER doc ran over to look at the results. When she returned, she said that she couldnt read the results too well, but some things seemed quite a bit higher than normal and i should consult my cardiologist on what to do next in regards to these results.

I have been so lucky and grateful that my sister works with my cardiologist doing billing. She has been able to be my voice and pass on to my cardiologist. I called her and let her know the 24hr urinalysis was complete and she could call and request the results. She said she would do so and call me back.

She called me back saying that they got the results and that her and my cardiologist skimmed ver them briefley. He chuckled when he heard I had been to the ER and they said I just had an ulcer. Apparently the results yielded a bit more info claiming to be something else.

Basically, i was told that I need to have a CT performed on my abdomen to search for adrenal/pancreatic masses. I have this appointment set for July 17th at 11am.

Apparently there are tumors or cysts that can cause secondary hypertension. I am really kinda scared of what the findings may be.
I feel that I am too young to die and i dont want to leave behind my beautiful wife and children.

This month has been so horrible. I have missed so many days from work and have done nothing more than lay around the house. i just keep thinking that a few weeks earlier i had NO hypertension and was perfectly fine. I would mtnbike, hike, etc... now I have a hard time just riding in a
car. I was 260lbs and pretty active prior to this, not i hardly have any energy nor appetite. Im at 230lbs.

One mre symptom that had become evident recently is on my upper-righ abdomen, close to center, it feels a nit tender and swollen. I can feel it if i bend over or amd laying in a perticular position or move around just right, Could this be my gall bladder or liver swollen? I dont seem to have signs of jaundice, however im not too keen on all of the sumptoms.

It is my hope that they find the cause, and they are able to remove and i go back to normal.. This whole series of events has opened my eyes and made me realize that life can be taken for granted.

While my wife works and kids go to daycare. Im staying at home, i get so lonely and depressed. I dont know whats wrong with me and I wish the medical system was a little more smoother.

I love my family and i dont want to die. I am sincerly frightened of what the results of that CT scan may be, considering how bad I have been feelig for so long.

I will post the results of the CT scan as soon as I know what they are.

I am sorry for such the long post, i just needed to vent a bit I guess.
Please respond with any similar symptoms you may have experienced and outcomes.

Thanks for reading
James
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replied July 26th, 2007
James,

I read your whole post, and have had some of your symptoms at various points throughout my life.

First, I'm 20 years old, 6'6" and weigh 230 pounds (used to weigh 285). So, as you can see, we're similar in physical attributes. I have also been fairly active throughout my life and have an okay diet.

A comment about your experience at Taco Bell; I have had similar experiences after eating. Most of the time it's after eating a large, unhealthy meal. Very tense and feeling short of breath, claustrophobic, heart palpitations etc. This was about 2 years ago. This period lasted a few months.

I also have suffered from some pain in my left arm and neck, as well as a swelling throat feeling at times. I have been in the hospital for all of these symptoms and have been told I'm fine every time.

One day I read on a similar health forum that someone had been experiencing similar symptoms due to stress. I made up my mind that I was fine and that stress was causing these problems - after that, I no longer experienced any of those above symptoms.

I would suggest reading some over on the anxiety board. I have recently been diagnosed with high blood pressure (I was shocked as you were), and have been beginning to feel more and more of these symptoms. I'm almost positive they are related to stress.

I too have been to the doctor many times for things that were not a legitimate problem. I've taken all the tests, drank all the chalky liquids (:shudders:), and everything's always been okay. I have a loving family and a girlfriend of 4 years that I don't want to lose by dying. I guess I would consider myself a little nervous about my physical health; many times I have strange aches and pains and always worry if it's something serious.

The bottom line, for me, is that I'm relatively healthy, nothing serious has ever been wrong before, and I shouldn't worry about such things.

My bp has gone up since the recent news that I had high bp (155/85), but who knows if that reading was just a fluke? I ordered a home bp monitor and will see if I can't lower it through diet and exercise (if I even have high bp in the first place). I have been experiencing some of those above symptoms (pain in arm, tight throat, tense) since the stressful news, but today have been feeling better by keeping all of that above information in mind.

I hope that you are doing okay, please let us know how everything goes. At the very least, if nothing concrete is found in your tests, consider changing your mindset about your physical problems. I've learned firsthand that stress can cause a LOT of crazy mental and physical "problems" that aren't even founded. If you have a strong mindset that they are stress-related, it might help them diminish or disappear completely.

-Kyle
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replied July 26th, 2007
Thank you so much for your response and for taking the time ot read my entire post.

I am starting to think that the real trigger was/is stress related.
In the 2 weeks prior to what I posted about, I had undergone some above-average stress in gigantic proportions. For example, My wife bought me a car that I knew we couldn't afford and it had problems, this aggrivated me every waking minute. Also she was involved in a car wreck over a year ago and now she still has chronic migrains and numbness. She saw a neurologist and he said, from the symptoms she has been having, that she may have a tumor. This tore me up... Also, sick children, work, etc all within a two weeks prior to my "breakdown".

I still have high bp especially if i dont take my blood pressure meds.

I am now at 224lbs. The results of my CT scan were basically clean. the adrenal and pancreas have been shown to be okay.

My gut still hurt. I ended up scheduling an edoscopy. They performed the procedure and found that I do have inflamation of my stomach and duodendum. Technically called gastritis and duodenitis. the doc took biopsies( havent heard back yet) and prescribed Prevacid and Sucralfate.

Following this procedure, I still have sever pains in my abdomen. I have read on it and it is possible that when I took the amoxicillin, i killed all of the good bacteria in my guts and the bad prevailed causing infection. Either colitis or Giardia infection.

I have had all blood tests and urin analysis taken with nothin too far out of spec.

I have a colonoscopy scheduled for July 31st.

The past couple of days, the pain hasn't been too severe and I think the duodenitis and gastritis is healing. my abdomen has been feeling better too. I still have a difficult time sleeping.

i have been able to slowly begin eating more and more and it feels great. I have been avoiding sodium and tring raw foods as I can tolerate them.

Again, I feel that all this was a downward spiral and self inflected. I dont know if I have colitis or Giardia, and it this point, id say i dont. The colonoscopy wont hurt and I feel it is good to know whats going on in there.

The ibuprofin is the suspected culprit of all the ailments of the digestive tract. I will give it a few more days to see how it will improve.
i have been concerned that th ibuprofin affected the kidneys causing the sudden onset of high bp. My cardiologist says no.

I have been wondering if the pain has caused the increase of the blood pressure and will subside when the pain is gone. Which is what I certainly hope will happen.

i will post the results of my colonoscopy.

thanks again for your response.
-james
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replied July 26th, 2007
Good to hear you're doing better.

As for that second-to-last paragraph, I'm no doctor, but I know stress itself can raise blood pressure. Sounds like you were going through quite a bit, so that may be the key. I'm not sure about the pain itself - something to ask a doctor.

Once those other tests come back clean, then I think you'll really be in the clear and on the up and up.

As for the changes in diet, that's certainly a good thing if you have high bp or not. I've been reading that 30 minutes of moderate exercise a day is recommended as well. One note on lowering blood pressure: I've been reading a lot of posts by the same member on here recommending a certain breathing method. I'm not sure if he has an ulterior motive or anything, but I'd be skeptical.

This morning I was really stressed; my arm was hurting pretty bad, tightening throat feeling and all that. I was a little worried again that something was wrong. But after thinking about all this stuff again it has helped me get my head straight and remember that it's just stress. My arm isn't hurting now and I feel fine.

You said you were on high bp medication. How is that? I have an aversion to taking meds for it; not that I'm anti-medication, I'd just rather lower it the natural way (again, if I even have high bp).
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replied July 26th, 2007
Thanks for the response.

I know immediately after the endoscopy, I had asked the gastro doc if the digestive problems i am experiencing may be a potential cause for the high blood pressure.

He says that everyone deals with and handles pain differently. When the body is subject to pain, it can cause stress and potentially raise the blood pressure.

I had asked my regular family physician and cardiologist this same question and received about the same answer.

I think you’re right in telling yourself the majority is just stress and not to worry about it. I know it is hard. It is scary when you are just doing the daily grind, work, home, the usual, then out of the blue you have something so weird that knocks you down and you’re in bed missing work, etc…
Prior to this, I could count on one hand how often I’ve been to the doctors. Part of my concern is that I am turning into a hypochondriac.

I think there is something mental that occurs to where you cannot focus on anything else other than the current issues. I know that the first couple of weeks, I could not even watch tv, or listen to music. I couldn’t focus on anything else other than what I am experiencing and dealing with. I would get online and research so many issues and diseases that I think I scared myself the majority of the time ultimately causing more stress. My wife could see and it made her angry.

Also, cabin fever sets in. I had a cardiologist appointment the day after my endoscopy. i was not adjusted to the newly prescribed meds for my stomach condition. I sat at the cardio’s in such pain that I was nauseated and I couldn’t even stand straight. Even sitting was bad. I had my bp tested and it was 153/87. The doc said that he would like to try a nuclear test of some sort, then after seeing the pain I was in, he said that he wanted to hold off of any testing for a couple of weeks to see if my stomach can improve. I think he could see the pain I was in wasn’t helping anything.
Now I haven’t really drove anywhere since all of this, my wife has been driving me everywhere. Well, she had to drop me off to this appt since she had a funeral to attend.
Following this cardiology appt, my mother met up with me to drive me home. Well, she has no a/c in the car she drove, so the ride home agitated my guts so bad along with the heat. I wanted nothing more than to get home to lie down. I finally told my mom to take me to her house since it was closer.

It was actually a good idea. It was nice to not be at home in the same atmosphere. trapped in the same walls. I actually almost fell asleep on the couch. Something I haven’t been able to do during the day in weeks. I was able to focus on TV and relax a bit. Probably also helped that I didn’t have a pc readily accessible there too.

It was so good that I had my wife drop me off the next day (Saturday). She left and did stuff with her parents, and then I was able to talk her in getting rid of the kids and come stay the night with me at my moms. It was almost therapeutic and rejuvenating. I could relax. It was nice.

I have read on the methods for breathing to lower high blood pressure. I am like you in a bit skeptical. However, there are conditions such as sleep apnea that can eventually cause high blood pressure.

Two days prior to all of these problems, I had gone on a couple hour bike ride. I am now considering getting a treadmill to get in to the swing of exercise again. I haven’t done anything more than a up and down out of bed and around the house.

As for the meds, I am on the most meds now than I have ever been in my life. I lsee these like you in thinking that these are just a temporary fix or a band-aid. I am dedicated to being on 0 meds.

The blood pressure meds are what bothered me. I had a hard time accepting that I am this young and that I am on these types of meds. I tried not even taking them, and then I could feel my pressure rise. We bought a home pressure meter and it was correct. It fluctuated quite a bit. I was given 160mg doses of Diovan. I decided that I would rather cut into 80mg dosages and take that daily instead. It did work to a point; however, my cardiologist found out about this and told me to take the entire pill. So, since then, I have taken the full 160mg daily. At first, the side effects were kind of scary as I hadn’t experienced anything like this. I am a little more used to it but I would like nothing more than to be off of these crutches.

I still will eat some things that swell up my stomach and I can see my heart beat in my abdomen quite prominently. It raises my heart rate and I feel a little weak.

So, overall, stress and sore guts are what I am leading to be the cause of my condition (ibuprofen didn’t help). Hopefully by alleviating these problems, I will be 100%.

I was prescribed Xanax for anxiety, so I try so hard to refrain from taking, but sometimes I need to. I’ll wake up in the middle of the night with a racing heart and just can’t go back to sleep. I don’t know if my hormones or nutrition are out of whack from lack of eating or the prescription meds are causing it.
Regardless, the xanax helps me sleep when i wake in the middle of the night.

I’m hoping that you get through all your problems and work through the stress and leave it behind.
That’s what I am working towards. As I said before, I would like nothing more than to be off of these meds.
I listened to a online radio interview by a Dr. Joel Fuhrman who is an author of a book called ‘Eat to Live’ which has apparently been affective in reversing diseases in people from diabetes to hypertension. I have considered looking into this a bit more. But I will see what I can do for myself for now.

Thanks for the response and reading. You have helped in giving me a little more reassurance that all of this is temporary and will pass. I cannot wait until then.

Thanks

James
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replied July 26th, 2007
I'm glad I could help. I know the turning point for me was finding out that tons of people have similar symptoms and that I wasn't alone and crazy.

Good news for me tonight. I got my home bp monitor in the mail and took my bp all night. On average it's been about 120/70. I'm so relieved. I was going to suggest you get a home monitor, but you already have one. Just try doing it after you relax for a while, and keep an eye on it now and then (though you probably do that too).

I'm sure you'll be fine when you get all of your results back. A stomach problem is a lot better than all those weird things you were feeling before (I know how scary some of that stuff can be).

Let me know when you get any more news, I'll keep an eye on this topic for a while.

-Kyle
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replied August 9th, 2007
Truly Natural
Hey guys, try the resperate. I've been using it for 2 months now to help control my HBP & couldn't be MORE excted with my results. The best part is that it's not a drug so there's no side effects!
Veronicca
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replied August 10th, 2007
Reperate
I also have the resperate device and wow it really works for me as well. Not to mention how relaxed I have been since I started the breathing exercise. My blood pressure was 210 over 110 my blood pressure dropped down to an amazing 122/74 mmHg, I Love this device and it’s all natural check it out at Resperate.com its great Very Happy
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replied September 6th, 2007
Resperate
yea, it is great. I've been using mine for 3 months now & couldn't be more excited with my results. My blood pressure is under control now. I definitly feel less stressed. It's like I don't even think about my blood pressure anymore since using my resperate. How have your BP readings been lately? Any more drops in reading?
Veronicca
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replied September 19th, 2007
Re: Resperate
[It’s pretty stabilize, but I wanted to ask you if you feel as relaxes as I do after you’re sessions sometimes I use it twice a day because I love that relaxed feeling I get Wink
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