Orthostatic Hypotension Diagnosis & Treatment Madison AL

In the US we're so preoccupied with high blood pressure and its risks (strokes, heart attacks, or heart failure) that we often overlook the dangers of low blood pressure (light-headedness, dizziness, occasional fainting spells). In fact, overzealous use of blood pressure - lowering medications is one of the primary causes of orthostatic hypotension.

Charles Randall Burns
(256) 539-4080
930 Franklin St Se
Huntsville, AL
Specialty
Cardiology, Internal Medicine, Cardiovascular Disease

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Gordon Henry Cash
(256) 539-4080
930 Franklin St Se
Huntsville, AL
Specialty
Cardiology, Cardiovascular Disease

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Alejandro Vasquez, MD
(256) 539-4080
930 Franklin St SE
Huntsville, AL
Specialties
Cardiology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Univ Francisco Marroquin, Fac De Med, Guatemala
Graduation Year: 1994

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Carl John Gessler
(256) 539-4080
930 Franklin St Se
Huntsville, AL
Specialty
Cardiology, Cardiovascular Disease

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Shichi Cheng, MD
(256) 351-0688
1215 7th St SE Ste 120
Decatur, AL
Specialties
Cardiology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Univ Of Chicago, Pritzker Sch Of Med, Chicago Il 60637
Graduation Year: 1992

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Sean Patrick Groark
(256) 539-4080
930 Franklin St Se
Huntsville, AL
Specialty
Cardiology, Cardiovascular Disease

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David Albert Woodard, MD
(256) 539-4080
PO Box 040005
Huntsville, AL
Specialties
Cardiology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Med Coll Of Ga Sch Of Med, Augusta Ga 30912
Graduation Year: 1989

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Richard Lloyd Clay
(256) 533-1077
201 Sivley Rd Sw
Huntsville, AL
Specialty
Thoracic Surgery, Vascular Surgery, Cardiac Surgery

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Joshua Michael Krasnow
(256) 539-4080
930 Franklin St Se
Huntsville, AL
Specialty
Cardiology, Cardiovascular Disease

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Henry J Chen, MD
(256) 539-4080
1215 7th St SE Ste 120
Decatur, AL
Specialties
Cardiology, Internal Medicine
Gender
Male
Languages
English, Chinese
Education
Medical School: Univ Of Md Sch Of Med, Baltimore Md 21201
Graduation Year: 1987
Hospital
Hospital: Decatur General Hosp, Decatur, Al; Huntsville Hosp-West, Huntsville, Al
Group Practice: Heart Center

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Effects of Low Blood Pressure

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By Stephen T. Sinatra, MD,a Board-certified cardiologist and author of The Sinatra Solution: Metabolic Cardiology (Basic Health Publications, 2008)

Absolutely it could. If springing to your feet causes you to feel light-headed, see black or white spots, or nearly keel over, you may have orthostatic hypotension. Put simply, orthostatic hypotension—orthostatic means “standing upright” and hypotension means “low blood pressure”—is the body’s temporary inability to adjust to changes in gravity. Usually when we stand up, our bodies automatically regulate blood flow as needed—by increasing heart rate and constricting blood vessels and veins, which increases blood pressure so blood can make it up into the brain. But when people with orthostatic hypotension stand up too quickly, venous blood pools in the legs rather than returning to the heart, blood pressure falls, and the brain does not get enough oxygen to maintain consciousness.

In the US we’re so preoccupied with high blood pressure and its risks (strokes, heart attacks, or heart failure) that we often overlook the dangers of low blood pressure (light-headedness, dizziness, occasional fainting spells). In fact, overzealous use of blood pressure–lowering medications is one of the primary causes of orthostatic hypotension.

Assuming you’ve ruled out other reasons for your dizziness—low blood sugar, dehydration, anemia, heart problems, medications—you can minimize, if not eliminate, your symptoms by making these simple changes.

Eat smart
Adding more salt increases volume expansion and therefore pressure in blood vessels, which is why people with high blood pressure should avoid it and those with too low blood pressure may want to add an extra dash. But that doesn’t give you license to tear into a bag of potato chips or load up on processed food. Instead, choose healthy salt sources. Swap your generic table salt for mineral-rich kosher salt, sea salt, Himalayan salt, or Celtic salt; munch on a dill pickle; or sip a cup or two of organic canned soup once a day. A handful of organic, salted nuts (cashews or almonds) also increases your salt intake—and provides plenty of healthy protein and minerals.
Eat smaller and more frequent meals throughout the day to prevent dizziness caused by low blood sugar, which exacerbates orthostatic hypotension. Be sure to balance each meal with low-glycemic carbohydrates (fruits, vegetables, and whole grains), healthy fats (olive oil, avocado, nuts, and seeds), and lean proteins (chicken, fish, eggs, lentils, and tofu).
Caffeine can temporarily raise blood pressure, so drink one to two cups of coffee or black or green tea in the morning, when blood pressure is at its lowest.
Drink plenty of fluids since dehydration can cause low blood pressure, and cut back on alcohol, which can cause low blood sugar, aggravating orthostatic hypotension.

Step it up
Engage in light exercise to get the blood flowing, such as walking (stairs or a flat surface), up...

Author: Stephen T. Sinatra, MD

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