Peter Hibberd, M.D., is a doctor whose advice is based on more than 28 years of hospital outpatient and inpatient experience. He is an experienced emergency medicine physician, surgeon, and consultant. Dr. Hibberd is certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine. He is also a fellow and active member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, an active member of the American College of Emergency Physicians, and a member and fellow of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine. Dr. Hibberd has earned numerous national and international professional certifications, memberships, and awards.
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Fluctuating Blood Pressure

Wednesday, 05 Jan 2011 11:05 AM

Question: My father suffers from stage 3 kidney disease and his blood pressure fluctuates a great deal. Should I bring this to the attention of his doctor?

Dr. Hibberd’s Answer:

An unstable blood pressure must be bought to the attention of your doctor. Whether or not it is related to kidney disease, a widely fluctuating blood pressure is a sure sign that more review is needed.

Perhaps these readings are acceptable for your father's condition, or perhaps his medications are either not lasting long enough or are causing sudden blood pressure drops. If his medications are the culprit, longer-acting formulations may give him a smoother response.

In any event, you are right to be concerned, and you should accompany him to his next visit with his specialist to have your observations explained. Whenever possible, it is best to avoid blood pressure fluctuations. We all fear strokes and vascular problems that are seen in ischemic (lack of blood flow or low-flow states) and hemorrhagic (broken or sheared blood vessels) forms. Their risk is reduced by even and stable blood pressure control.

© HealthDay

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