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Dr. D. Love
Dr. D. Love, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 17329
Experience:  Family Physician for 10 years; Hospital Medical Director for 10 years.
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If my blood pressure is 170/110, what should I do. I have no

This answer was rated:

If my blood pressure is 170/110, what should I do. I have no symptoms. I am a 48 yer old male.
It will help if you could provide some further information:
Has the blood pressure been at this level on multiple determinations?
Or does the blood pressure fluctuate?
If it fluctuates, what is the highest and lowest blood pressure that has occurred recently?
Do you have any chronic medical problems?
Are you taking any chronic medicines?
Do you smoke or drink alcohol or caffeine?
How much exercise do you get regularly?
Are you at ideal body weight?

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

yes over the past 3 or 4 days it has been this high.

no chronic medical problems

yes i drink alcohol but not alot and not since weekend

i do not smoke or drink much caffeine

i do not exercise regularly

I am 10 lbs overweight


Thank you for the additional information.

A blood pressure elevation at this level is relatively serious, but not quite to the level of being an emergency. Although most of the risk of high blood pressure accumulates over time, if the blood pressure gets to 180/120, that is the threshold at which the blood pressure can start to adversely affect function of organs solely because of the severity of the elevated blood pressure. This level of blood pressure can affect proper functioning of the heart, brain, or kidneys. Therefore, if the blood pressure gets to 180/120 and does not decrease quickly with resting, it is recommended to be seen emergently.

Since your blood pressure is not reaching this level, it is not necessary for you to be sen emergently, but since it is consistently at 170/110, which is close to this threshold, it would be appropriate for you to be seen by your primary care physician as soon as you can be seen in the office.

Although it is recommended that persons with blood pressure elevation at this level should be started on medicines, there also are some lifestyle changes that may help in the control of blood pressure. It is good that you do not smoke or drink caffeine, and it would be better to completely avoid alcohol until the blood pressure is better controlled (and once controlled should be very limited). It is also recommended to avoid salt (sodium) in the diet. The amount of salt that comes naturally in foods is fine, but there should be no salt added in processing, in cooking, or at the table. It also is good to get regular aerobic exercise, at least 3-5 days per week, although daily would be even better. It is also good to maintain ideal body weight, but 10 pounds is not that sufficient to cause this significant of a blood pressure elevation. These interventions will not likely make a large difference before being seen, but they will make more of a difference over the long-term.

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