Just because you’re talking to various specialists to treat your health conditions doesn’t mean your doctors are. And that may end up harming you.
Recent research has revealed that many people with high blood pressure may take drugs for other conditions that could even boost blood pressure even higher. If undetected or undertreated, high blood pressure will increase the risk for heart attack, stroke, kidney disease and vision problems.
This hypertension risk is very easily overlooked and could be particularly risky for people taking medications/treatments for extended periods.
How can this happen? For the most part, it’s that various specialists don’t talk to each other. They prescribe based on your needs for a particular condition, often without consideration for other drugs you could be taking for something else.
Therefore, it is essential that you keep an updated list of medications to share with your various physicians, including your family doctor, to ensure you aren’t worsening one condition by treating another.
That isn’t to say you need to pick and choose what you treat. It does, however, allow doctors to recommend alternatives or adjust prescribed doses.
The study found about 20 percent of adults with high blood pressure were taking medications that could take it even higher. Treatments that could boost blood pressure include antidepressants, prescription-strength non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), steroids, hormonal medications, decongestants, and weight loss pills.
People taking these medications were also more likely to require higher doses of blood pressure medications.
There is much more than medicine to help keep blood pressure under control, and lifestyle measures take on increasing importance if you’re taking meds that may increase blood pressure.
Increasing activity and adopting a heart-healthy diet can help, as can restricting salt intake, limiting alcohol, managing stress, and getting good sleep.