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Erratic blood pressure readings

A My Blood Pressure user shared his story of erratic blood pressure readings and trips to the ER, after reading a similar blood pressure story from another user David.

It is a scary time for K.C. and his family, and his Doctors have found no solutions. He thought maybe other My Blood Pressure users may have experiences or suggestions they can share which may help.

K.C.’s erratic blood pressure story

Since February 2009 I have been dealing with erratic BP (some days all is normal and others it jumps to 178\145 pulse up to 140) and it has caused me several issues and was wondering if David ever got an answer to what caused it.

Prior to this my BP readings were between 120-130 over 70-80, I have been keeping track since I turned 40 as heart problems run in the males of my family.

With me it started with an attack of Vertigo so bad I was transported to the ER, test were done and results were negative or nothing found. Due to my BP being extremely high during the episode I was told to seek an appointment with an internist. Went to the doctor and was placed on Lisinopril (5mg/day) and sent home.

I still had light headedness once a week but as it only lasted for 10 to 15 minutes so I just thought it was getting used to the meds. Then in April I had another episode with balance while at work and fell to the floor while talking with a coworker, it was also followed by a severe drop in blood sugar that was relieved temporarily by taking a sugar gel (nasty tasting) but it dropped again 15 minutes later and I started having uncontrollable muscle twitches and a terrible headache.

I was transported to the ER again and had blood tests, CT scan (due to seizure witnessed by doctor), and a spinal tap. Results again negative and was told it might be stress.

Then in May one Sunday while on vacation I woke up at 3 am with severe pain in my neck and back straight through to my chest and trouble breathing, this lasted 30 minutes and my BP and pulse was again at high numbers. Afterwards I either fell asleep or passed out and woke up at 7 am still having some trouble breathing correctly and high BP. Went to the ER who gave me nitro pills and the next day they did a catheterization to check my heart and found there was no blockage or damage, in fact the doctor said he was surprised considering my family history of males dying of heart attacks in their 40s.

Well I am back home again and still no answers to what is going on with my body and now they have me taking another drug to keep my heart rate down but it is causing my BP to drop to 90/60 pulse 65 to 70 as well and I feel awful.

  • Age – 49
  • Weight – 290 lbs
  • Heart is healthy according to doctor and there is less than 10% blockage in any artery
  • Cholesterol is 88
  • Non smoker
  • Occasional drinker (go out once a month and have 2 or 3 shots)

Symptoms include:

  • Severe headaches
  • Erratic BP
  • Racing pulse constant between 108 and 140 before taking new med
  • Sweating even on cold days (doc says due to pulse)
  • Sudden drop in blood sugar
  • Vertigo
  • Dizziness
  • General feeling of being off

If anyone has an answer for me I would appreciate it. Thanks, K.C.

Kellie’s note

Please post your suggestions to the forum or email me at email support and I will pass your email onto K.C. Thanks! Kellie

A reply to K.C. …

We had a response to K.C. from Ra in Australia who had a similar experience to share. Here is his story.

Hi KC,

To introduce myself, my name’s Rashad. Your story (that I read via the My Blood Pressure news) struck a chord with me because I have BP that has been impossible to get fully under control ever since they spotted it about 18 years ago, when I was 40. I thought I may share some of my experience with you in case it helps.

First a quick bit of info about me: I’m from India, male, 58. Been living in Australia for 32 years. More important, I guess, are the things that have contributed to my problems:

  • I started smoking when I was 17. Averaged around 15 to 20 a day, cut down when I was close to 40, but stopped fully at about 43 (about 15 years ago).
  • From the time I came to Australia I put on quite a bit of weight – I’m 5′ 10″ – started off about 72 kg…hmm, no…you guys work in lbs, right?….ok, started off about 160 lbs, but for about 12-15 years before 2006 I stayed in the 190 – 220 lb range.
  • And this is the real killer, so to speak:- From my mother’s side of the family I have inherited a genetic tendency to hypertension, diabetes and heart problems. The big three, huh?

And KC, even though I was on BP medication, I just didn’t realize how harmful it was to be careless with it, and in June of 2006 I had a stroke. It was real serious, but I was very lucky to make a darned good recovery. The thing is, that really woke me up and I sort of got my act together. Lost about 50 lbs, wised up on my eating habits, etc. And got regular with my meds, but even that did not stop me from having another small stroke this January (on my birthday, would you believe!?).

So let me put some of my thoughts and opinions down here, things that I have learned (mostly from experience):

  • BP like you and I have is relatively uncommon. I have an older brother and sister. They both are somewhat overweight and have high BP, but nothing like mine. Both of them are on like 1 or 2 tablets of Norvasc a day and their BP is just fine and stable. I am on 4 separate types of blood pressure meds, morning and evening and yet my BP is all over the place.
  • What that’s saying is that we cannot – and must not – compare ourselves to people who have “normal” hypertension. It just does not compute. I used to get really frustrated when I met someone much heavier than me or like a chain smoker or similar, with perfectly normal BP. Took me a long time to realize that I was just making myself depressed by comparing. I need to deal with ME, not them…
  • What I do know is that as I get my weight down, my BP becomes more stable. And I mean even 5-10 lbs seems to make a difference.
  • I was going through something much the same as you. To try and keep my BP down, the doctor I was seeing had me on some meds that would do the same thing: I took them and my BP would drop way down, as would my heart rate. I actually measured my heart rate at 48 one day, and I was functioning and working , but man, did that feel baaad! Even normal doses of blood pressure medication make you feel fatigued and tired. The sort of high doses I’m on (and probably you are on, too?) can make you feel like all you want to do is get into bed and pass out, right?
  • Hypertension specialists these days seem to not want to investigate the cause of high BP. It seems that current thinking just accepts the high BP as a given and focuses on finding the right mix of meds. I had a doctor who tried various mixes for years but I recently changed to another specialist who changed my meds. My BP is presently more stable than in a long time and the drops are less severe.
  • There are some BP meds that drop the heart rate quite drastically – maybe you should be getting off them. I was on a drug called Atenolol (of the type called Beta blockers). They tend to slow the heart rate down a lot. But at same time, if you miss your dose for a couple of days you could find your heart racing.

I hope I have not bored you with all this. If you would like to keep in touch about this please drop me a line and we can correspond. In any case, all the best with your BP and I hope you can get it under control.

Cheers from Ra in Australia

Kellie’s note:

Thank you to Ra from Australia for sharing his story and letting K.C. know he is not on his own. Ra’s insight and compassion from his own experiences will help many.


42 Responses to “Erratic blood pressure readings”

  1. Daniel says:

    WOW! At last someone that I can share my utter frustrations about my Hypertension with.
    I’m 48 years old and live in South Africa. I had trouble in controlling my BP for the last 10 years, but the last 3 years was the worst. I was using the normal BP medication-combinations-diuretics and Beta blockers. One morning about 3 years ago when I woke up, my eyesight was not normal as it was the previous day. I could not read at normal distance and had blurred vision in my mid range. I thought that the 40’s syndrome of weaker eyesight has eventually caught up with me. I got prescription glasses and went on my merry way, not knowing what was actually happening with me.
    I started to get agitated easier and was losing my temper on a regular basis, so much so that my wife and children started to avoid me on purpose when I got home from work. My doctor said that it was stress and that I should change my lifestyle…. wonderful!!!! I started to go to the gym and got totally addicted to it though I could not understand why I did not lose weight. I’m 192cm and weigh 112kg at the time. I was doing cardio only and not trying to build muscle. My weight sky rocketed to 128kg’s in less than a year. I then took up road running and ran my first ultra-marathon in April last year. Wow, what a feeling of accomplishment! I finished in time and got my first medal! My weight dropped to 102kg and I thought that I’m on the right way, eating healthy, exercising etc. My moods were better and people wanted to be around me again.
    At that stage I was monitoring my BP on a monthly basis at the gym, and although it was on the high side (145/90) it did not bother me so much, seeing that I’m taking my meds and did the lifestyle changes recommended.

    Sitting at my computer one morning in May last year reading my e-mails, my nose started to bleed. I did have a slight cold, and thought that the bleed stems from that, but it got worse and did not stop. I went to nose and throat specialist that diagnosed an arterial bleed in the back of my nose. He took my BP while fixing the tear. What a shock!! My BP was 256/165!! He immediately referred me to a specialist physician. And this is how it all started for me. I was hospitalized and put on a drip to stabilize my BP. it took 3 days to do that. During that time they started with the tests to determine the cause of the high BP.A 24hr urine test showed highly elevate adrenaline counts. My physician told me that a “normal” count is around 3000 units (of what I still don’t know)and that mine was 13500, 10500 more than the norm. This could only indicate a tumor on my adrenal glands. Ct scan and kidney sonar showed normal. Then a heart sonar showed thickened heart muscle and some mitral valve noise. My cholesterol levels were normal but as a matter of precaution he put me on medication to lower it more. My sugar was elevated and he prescribed Glucophage to help control that. All that with my new BP medication had such an adverse effect on me that I could not walk for about 3 weeks. Every move was painful, I was constantly tired but could not sleep. When my BP started to control to about 140/105 he added an antidepressant into the mix to help me cope. In the meantime my ability to work decreased. I started to forget stuff, ordinary things like names of my co-workers, how to change gears on my car and where I was going to when driving. My outbursts of rage came back big time, I would loose my temper over the slightest things. Even at myself for forgetting things or the inability to plan ahead for the next hour or day. Work became a monster that was slowly defeating me and driving me mad. I lost concentration and nothing mattered for me anymore, all I wanted to do was to curl-up and die!
    My medication changed again and my muscle soreness went away, but in its place came the most excruciating headaches. I was booked off from work to see if that would not help in curing me. My medication worked well and some days my BP would drop to 90/60 and my heart rate would be at 160 for 24 hours. My BP would then “normalize” and my heart rate would go back to 60 or 62 but then I’m so tired that I cannot move.

    Now I’m on this roller coaster ride, one day BP high (167/116) feeling if I can murder everyone around me and as stupid as a brick, and the next day my BP would be (116/75) and I would get the worst angina attacks imaginable.
    I really don’t know what to do any more.They have done a brain MRI and found nothing wrong and my adrenal levels have normalized. A radio isotope spectrogram also showed nothing, no tumors or any abnormalities. All my blood tests were normal and still BP that is all over the place. My last heart sonar showd a 8% decrease in heart function over the last 10 months which is a disturbing factor for me. If that is the ratio of deterioration of my heart, the I think I have a problem coming soon.

    I hope that I have not bored you to much with my story. I only which that some one would find a cure or explanation for our BP saga’s.

    All the best for you all!


  2. Steve says:

    Hi Daniel,

    Thank you for sharing your story. It sounds like a dreadful ordeal. I hope you can find the answer to your situation. Certainly if we get any responses to your comment, I will forward them through to you.

    Best wishes,

  3. John S says:

    Daniel………please ask your doctor to run a fasting insulin blood test. It should be under 10. Most high blood pressure is caused by hyperinsulinemia. You undoubtedly have high insulin levels. I would think that an insulin lowering diet will help your health. Go get the book Protein Power and read it. It is in paperback and in the US costs about $7. Here’s a link to a paper by Dr. Ron Rosedale about the biological effects of insulin.

    Some of the blood pressure medications you take or have taken contribute to your high insulin levels which exacerbates the cause of your high blood pressure. As Rosedale says if you only treat symptoms and not the cause you will end up taking lots of medications many of whihc are prescribed to counteract side effects of other medications. It’s crazy!! While this may not be a total “cure” for your BP problem it will almost assuredly help control your BP and it will get you off some if not all of your medications. Take a look at the supplements that Rosedale recommends. Fish oil, magnesium, chromium, etc all of which you should seriously think about taking. If you do try the insulin controlling diet (low carb) then you need to make sure your doctor is on board because within days you may need to cut back on the blood pressure medications and the diabetes medications in a few weeks. Good luck to you.

    PS: Here’s a link to Dr. Eades website for more information:

    If your cholesterol wasn’t high then I, personally, would not take a cholesterol lowering drug. In fact i would never take a cholesterol lowering statin drug.

  4. First Watch Respite Care says:

    Hello, I am a Private in-home Care Provider and see this problem in clients quite often. It would be wise to pull your medical records and see what other underlying health problems are in your records that no one has told you about. I would start there. What I have found in the case of some clients was the long term stress that can destroy your health and also Low Kidney functions. These were 40-50 years olds males. Just and FYI and good health to you all!

  5. John S says:

    Good point. I try and get at least 4 days/week of moderate aerobic exercise to deal with stress. I also try to do the breathing exercises to reduce stress. Here’s a link to an outfit that provides breathing tapes but also has a demo on the website. Scroll down toward the bottom.

  6. Lorri says:

    i dont know if you have found any answers yet but i had a pheochromocytoma 8 yrs ago. erratic blood pressure high and low, excrutiating headaches, high blood sugar, sweating profusely…they never would have found my tumor had I not been pregnant. the tumor grew with the growth hormone, with the baby. it was the size of a grapefruit when it was FINALLY discovered. i am well now!

  7. Cindy says:

    My blood pressure goes up and down, from 120/81 (rare) to as high as 162/116. What’s up with that? I hear people say things like “my blood pressure is 135/90″. What the heck does that mean? No one gets the same reading all the time. I’m wondering what the typical fluctuation really is. And I’m not finding the answer anywhere. Can anyone help me?
    Also, I hear all these cases of Doctors putting people on Blood Pressure medicine after just one reading. According to my cardiologist that is just wrong! You need to do a diary to see what level it typical reads. And he told me to get my device calibrated to make sure the readings are accurate, which I’ve never heard anyone else say.
    What percentage of the population is on on Blood Pressure meds I wonder, and what are the long term effects?

    • Steve says:

      Hi Cindy,

      > I hear people say things like “my blood pressure is 135/90″.
      > What the heck does that mean?

      Typically that should mean a reading that is taken under a certain set of conditions, such as: having sat still for a few minutes, not drunk coffee or smoked for 30 minutes, sitting upright and having an empty bladder. For more information see:

      > No one gets the same reading all the time.
      > I’m wondering what the typical fluctuation
      > really is.

      Personally my readings usually come in +/- 5 mmHg of each other, assuming that I take the reading as described above (which is what is recommend by the various medical groups).

      I am not sure what the typical fluctuation is. I think that is an individual thing.

      > According to my cardiologist that is just wrong!
      > You need to do a diary to see what level it typical reads.

      I agree. This website exists to support a computer program that does just that.


  8. Joe says:

    Having taken more than 6 different types of BP medication over the last 2 years I came to the conclusion that none were helping my BP. Every one of them made me feel like I was spaced out and I could not function normally. They also increased my weight whether I dieted or not. This was probably due to water retention, because my weight would return to normal within a week or two of discontinuing the medication.
    I then discovered that my BP was erratic whether I was on medication or not and put it down to the stress. It would fluctuate between 130/80 and 180/110 without any change in what I was doing.
    I am 59 and have always had a slow rested heartbeat of between 48 and 52 and I am not overweight. Recently I discovered that my BP decreases when my heartbeat increases. I checked it one morning and it was 177/103 with a pulse of 51, I then exercised for 10 minutes, my pulse increased to 90 and my BP reduced to 155/95. I have done this exercise a number of times since, always with the same result. I am baffled, but one thing I am sure of is that BP medication does not help with erratic blood pressure.

    • Tinabeaver says:

      Joe, you are the first person i have read about that has a condition almost identical to mine. erratic bp and very low pulse. different is that i can’t get my pulse up. it only goes up under emotional stress and then only to the 80’s. i had a stress test and they couldn’t get my pulse high enough to get a reading, but my bp was near stroke level.
      i have taken 3 different bp meds and they not only make me sick, and the bp prob continued. i did find some relief with a CPAP, but after 2 yrs the prob returned and now for the last month is is out of hand. as i was writing this i had to go lie down for 4 hrs.
      they say it is stress and the dr can’t figure me out. she gave me xanax for my panic/stress attacks and i take as needed.
      i haven’t taken bp meds for a yr and again it is still the same except when i have these “episodes” where it gets out of control.
      at least i have learned how to bring down my bp and i am not running off to the er every night. but i can’t control it when i go to bed with decent bp and wake up with bp running from 175/95 to 210/115, but i still have a pulse averaging 52-55. ANY SUGGESTIONS?????

    • Dave says:

      If your pressure drops when your heart rate rises – as mine does – it can often mean that your heart is not pumping efficiently. It’s pumping faster but not fully. My problem was pinpointed when I had my first bout of atrial fibrillation. I woke up one morning with my heart pulsing not beating as such. I was in A-fib. Since then (2 years) I have not had another full blown episode but exhibit all the symptoms you talk about. Erratic BP with no obvious cause and pressure that drops as my heart rate increases. A-fib, I’m told, happens when years of less than perfect BP lead to a thickening of the heart wall where the electrical signal originates. You may want to get an ultrasound of your heart. They can tell right away if your heart wall has thickened.

  9. sonya says:

    I have erratic blood pressure. It especially goes Wacko at night. Really high like many of you. I got put on BP medication which helps somewhat during the day. It still can go pretty erractic often at night. I’m going to see an endocrinologist in September to have my adrenal glands looked at . A decision I’ve made ( not my primary physician’s – she’s not interested)through research. If I have any luck I will let you know.

    • Steve says:

      Sonya, good luck with your appointment, and please do report back here if you have any luck.

      Thanks! Steve

    • Felix says:

      Ho Sonya,

      Just google the following term “Circadian
      Rhythm” and read about blood pressure. My wive has similar problems.

      Good luck.


  10. Pete says:

    Some terribly sad BP stories there guys.

    Many seem to be anxiety related either physical (possible endocrine related, thyroid/adrenal etc) which you cannot control, or mental (stress etc) which you can control.

    It is crucial you get your BP down to an ideal of roughly 120/80…up to 130/90 is tolerable. Any more than that and you WILL be damaging your body, kidney especially. So it really is vital to get it under control. I have kidney disease anyway, which has then caused high BP. I discovered clonidine recently and it seems particularly good at controlling BP which presents with anxiety issues for whatever reason. And seems to have very few genuine side effects. I’m now on 100mcg am – 150mg Irbesartan midday – 100mcg last thing at night. For BP control the range is usally 300 to 600mcg spilt morning/evening.

    DO NOT take Lisinopril because it will damage your kidney even more, and certainly do not take combo ACE/ARBs (irbesartan/lisinopril etc)

    If you have mild hypertension, chocolate is very good at controlling it. But obviously normal chocolate is no good at all (milk) it needs to be the strongest, plain, dark chocolate for an instant hit. But you cannot sustain eating that or you will end up a tubOlard. What you can do is buy raw, organic cacao nibs, which is cocoa in it’s basic form.

    You also need to seriously adjust your lifestyle if you are in trouble anyway and remember you ARE WHAT YOU EAT. If you eat bad food and drink then you will suffer in the end.

    Finally if you cannot control the stress in your life (job etc) then you need to seriously consider walking away from it before it kills you.

    high BP is NOT ok no matter what anyone tells you. So get it under control quick.

    As for when to take BP? You need a routine and stick to it. The best times are first thing in the morning before you do anything, but at least 20 minutes after you have woken up. And last thing at night before bed. These should then be the markers you are aiming at controlling. The highs and lows during the day can be safely ignored in general, and are considered normal. sit down for at least five minutes relaxing, no moving or talking. Arm on a cushion and take the BP.

    Don’t use a wrist cuff monitor as they are notoriously unreliable. Use an arm cuff monitor, Omron are very good. It’s vital whatever you use, wrist or arm, that you have the correct cuff size too or your readings will be way out. Most standard cuffs are for small/average people.

    HTH and good luck to ya’ll.

    Steve how about doing discounts for multiple purchases of software? ie: if we own BP, we can buy one of the others at a 99% discount? lol

    • Johnny Shack says:

      Have erratic BP: daytime, 97/64 HR 59 to 220/83 HR 48 at night. Some nights overloads my Amron and it EEE’s out.

      Am taking clonodine patch, Tekturna when needed and 80 MG micardis.

      Dragging all morning and aftn; better in evening except for high BP readings.

      waiting for results of 24 hour urine test.

  11. Carol says:

    Amazing to read all your posts!! So I can join the Club?!! Started 8 years ago, nurse at my new doctors took BP. It was in the 150/ 80 range. Ended up in hospital, due to anxiety at being unable to control it, and put on the usual combo. Like most of you, just made me so much worse, everything they gave me made things worse.
    In the end I really had to stop all meds saying I would prefer to drop dead than go through what I was going through. That was 7 years ago. Since then I have regularly taken my BP with a cuff monitor but have always checked it with the arm monitor at the docs and it is correct but am thinking of buying an arm monitor. I have found, sitting at computer or in a chair can rise my BP significantly. Stand up and it goes down immediately!! Lie down and it goes down even more!! I did think I had some kind of vascular problem in the stomach area cos of this. I also can go as low as 83/54 albeit rarely, and this year reached my record high on one occasion 202/135 62. I have been told the pulse rate of heart compensates for the highs, have also seen somewhere that you take the diastolic from the pulse rate or the other way around to give indication of ….I forget what!! Find BP goes down with less food eaten. Am at moment walking with determination every day and eating only fruits and vegetables salads etc. Not sure how long I can keep it up . Definitely have “anxiety” problems where the least stress rises it remarkably. Nurses everywhere comment on how high it is but when I get home it goes down !! I do not sweat but have what they term IBS being investigated at moment, as I have considered all along chemicals causing the BP rise , eg tumours etc. Had to stop the running test they give you as although “nothing wrong with your heart” I could run forever! the BP dropped so low at resting , they did not want to carry on with the test! They do do screenings privately here in England and I have missed two opportunities to participate in them( have to pay) but I will definitely pay if they come to the area again. In the meantime I eat healthily, exercise and pray!!!!

    • Gigi says:

      I am so frustrated that no one can find an answer. I now ABSOLUTELY refuse to be hooked up to the machines that take blood pressure readings. Machines, nurses, doctors,or hospitals: one reading will max out the numbers on the guage and a few seconds later the second reading will show severely below normal. So here they go again for round 3 a few seconds later and it is close to maxing out again. Just had extensive blood work done because, as usual, the doctor is concerned. EVERY TEST RESULT WAS NORMAL!

      I started having this trouble about a year ago when I was 41. I am overweight(currently 248), but have lost 40 pounds in the past 2 years due to eliminating sugars from my diet. The only other health issues are pernicious anemia (for which I take 1cc of B12 once every 3 weeks), low Vitamin D (for which I take one 5000iu capsule per day), and allergic to sugar (for which I have completely eliminated all sugars(natural or processed) with the exception of Stevia.

      Between weight loss and B12 injections, I feel the best I have ever felt in my entire life, childhood included! So should I be concerned?

  12. Carol says:

    Wikipedia give a lengthy and interesting account of BP but we are all individual and also remember to have high BP readings must be CONSTANTLY high same witn low.

    “In practice, each individual’s autonomic nervous system responds to and regulates all these interacting factors so that, although the above issues are important, the actual arterial pressure response of a given individual varies widely because of both split-second and slow-moving responses of the nervous system and end organs. These responses are very effective in changing the variables and resulting BP from moment to moment.”

  13. Carol says:

    “The difference between the systolic and diastolic blood pressure is referred to as pulse pressure; if the number chronically exceeds 60, advanced atherosclerosis is usually present.”

  14. fbk says:

    kellie and steve….your blogs and posts are saving my life….thank you so much….

  15. Kimberly says:

    Hi All!

    I found this site, and thought you might think about another possible aspect of this problem.

    I have always been “petite”, until recently..I’m now having edema from my problems, but not “pitting”.
    I was a runner who had very low BP (90/60) until I started having back and neck problems about 15 years ago (at 40). . I found myself making more trips to the Dr’s office, neurologist, physiatrist, etc. My BP reading was usually 140/90 there, while in pain. For awhile, they attributed it to anxiety, but I’m so laid back I could be mistaken for dead. Finally, my GP put me on Lisinopril and HCTZ. No one could figure out why my neck was giving off the charts surface EMG readings with a “normal” MRI, etc. I had awful headaches, nausea, pain and spasms that the doctors thought twice about doing trigger point injections (said they were afraid the needle would break- the muscle was so tight). I moved to a larger area a few years ago, and my new GP noticed my BP readings were relative to my pain levels. She decided to only leave me on HCTZ, feeling that lowering my BP too much was just as harmful as these spikes. I don’t take pain meds regularly, and on “good” days my BP is 118/68-80 now. My pain “episodes” have gotten progressively worst and more frequent. I went to the ER last month with a BP of 191/117. The ER Dr. said this was much more common than they’d originally thought, and felt the weather was playing a part with barometric pressure change. I hadn’t told him this was my main problem, because every other time I’d mentioned it to medical people, they’d say, “Oh, that’s just an old wive’s tale”. But, these “episodes” ALWAYS come right before a thunderstorm. The closest I can find is some sort of autonomic disorder, rather than what he called “hyperactive spine”. He only gave me an anti nausea pill and pain medicine. Within the next 30 minutes, my BP dropped to 150/90, and the next morning was back to 118/70.
    I had another MRI recently, this time one of the upright varieties. A neurosurgeon a few years ago thought it might be some sort of compression, and an upright MRI might be beneficial. It apparently was, I have a slightly compressed spinal cord at 3 cervical levels, it didn’t show when I was laying down for the other MRI’s(lying also relieved my pain). So, I think that the barometric pressure changes causes just enough more compression to set off these problems?

    Another possible cause, if you are having neck issues. I got the impression they’re still learning about interrupted signals that cause your autonomic (controls BP, temp, etc) system to do odd things..

    Hope you all are feeling well today!


  16. Trevor says:

    I have been having erratic blood pressure in the mornings that I feel I have a sinus headache and after taking sinus x2 tabs, I feel better very soon with headache gone and blood pressure perfect and after a Google search I found this is linked to the carotid artery that supplies blood to the neck/head and can be a very dangerous condition.

  17. Lesley Humphreys says:

    I haven’t had erratic BP but I was on Atenolol for years – then I started having a good amount of coconut oil in my diet and now my BP is ‘normal’. I got the doctor’s permission to stop the Beta blockers. It might be worth trying coconut oil; unlike the prescription meds it has no side effects and does help to reverse a great many debilitating conditions.

  18. Katiana says:

    Hi all. Daniel’s struggles match mine.Today I was 167/116 hr 107.On a good day my systolic ranges from 115-130,my diastolic is almost always over 90.Usually its around 100,my heart rate can go from 70 after just waking to 110 just standing or doing normal activities.My peculiar situation though is that I’m a 26 year old female who struggles to stay over 100 lbs.I have kidney problems as well and no insurance,no Dr I have seen will listen to me just because of my age I guess.What is happening to me?

  19. Brian says:

    Just glad to know I am not alone. At 27 I have been dealing with erratic BP for nearly a decade. I’m a heavy set guy 5′8″ with weight ranging from 185-220 during this period. Always been very active with sports and exercise so I’m not a couch potato just a stocky guy. I have had extended periods of no symptoms and stretches of months on months where I’ve experienced numerous symptoms from dizziness to extreme fatigue, sweating, heart pounding, chills, nausea you name it. BP during these episodes is usually in the 160-180/90-110 range. Have been on & off meds and also had an ablation performed at 19 when the tachycardia was at it’s peak. Currently on 10mg norvasc & was percribed 10 mg lisinopril on top of that today which when taken together resulted it bouts of postural hypo & hypertension which landed me in the ER. Doctor’s have no idea where to start. They are attempting to control the BP but I’m certain there is an underlying cause to the madness? Have returned to my cardiologist at different points but nothing has shown up since they performed my ablation several years back? Just venting my frustrations here. I know people have varying beliefs but you all will definitely be in my prayers because I fully understand this struggle

  20. Grace says:

    I have been having similar issues with my 17 year old daughter. Sweating, tired, erratic high BP and heart rate, headaches, and stomach pain. One doctor told us to look into pheochromocytoma – tumors on the addrenal glands. We are currently going through testing now. It is very rare and normally does not show in children so the pedicatrician is not quite on board witht his. We’ll see.

  21. Linda says:


    I’ve struggled with high and low blood pressure for years. At times I’ve given up on prescriptions totally.

    My current theory is that many of our problems are insulin resistance based, which in turn leads to inflammation.

    Please read the following informative article and see if any of it sits right with your problems. It is a good starting point for research into erratic blood pressure problems.

  22. michelle says:

    It is so reassuring that others have the same panic/exhaustion /confusion that comes with BP problems. I am going to investigate the insulin connection and report back. I think we have something there.

    I also pray desperately when the anxiety gets too much. I am thinking of all of you – you are all in my thoughts.

  23. Marilyn says:

    I was diagnosed with clinical depression in 2004. I was put on 40mg of celexa in the morning and 100mg of trazadone to sleep. It took me at least 4 months to start feeling normal again. I was always a very happy go lucky type of person, but now I may have one good day a week. December, 2011, I was switched to Pristic, because the Celexa wasn’t effective anymore. I had 1 month or so of feeling better. Then the blood pressure started to rise. I was put on Mavik and developed a horrible cough. I went off that and didn’t take anything for awhile. I checked my blood pressure at a drugstore and it was 157 over 88. Went to my doctor last week and was put on Olmetec. Started feeling like crap. Dizzy, weak, hot flashes, extremely tired, stomach pain and not hungry at all. Went back to Dr 3 days later and blood pressure 111 over 76. Bought a blood pressure machine to monitor daily. Dr told me anything over 120 over 80, take 1/2 Olmetec. A bit over for 3 days, so took 1/2 pill. Today, blood pressure 106 over 68. Feel like crap. I am 54, 30 lbs overweight, fairly stressful job, and a light smoker. Anyone have any suggestions? I am very tired of not feeling normal!

    • Steve says:

      Hi Marilyn,

      I don’t have any medical advice, but I do suggest you take lots of readings with your new BP monitor and take them with you when you next go to the Doctor. I have been told by many people over the years that their Doctors were able to fine tune their medications far more effectively after seeing results of home monitoring.

      Best wishes to you. I hope you feel better and can get on top of things soon!
      My Health Software support

  24. Ken says:

    I take a high blood pressure med. Normal medicated pressure is around 130-140/65-75. Pulse 65-75. Occasionally I feel light headed and can feel my heart beating rapidly. Yesterday I ran blood pressure readings every 2-3 minutes while it lasted. The numbers were from 95-120/49-75 but the pulse rate ran from 121-157 during this time. Usually lasts for about a 30 minute time period and the Omron pressure tester shows an irregular heartbeat during this time. This type of incident happens around every 6-8 weeks and nothing in between. My age is 79, very active, normal weight, normal cholesterol, take a blood thinner as I had what the doctor suspected was a mini-stroke a few years ago, no other health problems.

    • Mangal says:

      Hi Ken,
      If you are taking calcium channel blockers (eg. Verapamil), and your arrhythmia episodes happen soon after taking such meds, this could be causing the irregular heart rate. You may want to check with your doctor about reducing the dosage, or eliminating/substitution.

  25. Asjad Iqbal says:

    Hi every one i aslo shareing with you my blood pressure reading,when i go doctor for cheking bb that time my rating 90/140 or 90/135… a weak i check my blood pressure 14 time but diffrence diffrence readding.The reading below this.
    150/85,120/80,130/80.140/90,120/78,129/80,145/85.140/90,120/78 on ething more since 15 days before i start this takeing rating but now i feel any thing the i feel may be my blood pressure increaseing,Can you give me yours expert opnion this is normel or i should take serious thnx

  26. moonbeam says:

    Gotta feel for all you guys…this blood pressure thingy is a bitch!

    i almost bled to death when i had an aneurysm brought on by high nighttime blood pressure…still here thanks to the Grace of God… so i would like to encourage all you with that problem to not let it go (like i did)lol…

    i’m doing pretty good now on minimal medication because i have been taking many different supplements for a couple years now…down from massive doses of 4 different drugs when i got out of the hospital..

    CoQ10 is absolutely the BEST (a quality one)…it helps with the exhaustion from the beta-blockers…every cell in the body needs it for energy…

    Grapeseed extract works on the salt sensitivity, especially in women…B-12, 4000+D3, noni juice,fish oil, Omega 3-6-9, and olive leaf extract (standardized to 20%) has been shown in studies to lower blood pressure. We have spent hundreds of unreimbursed dollars on good quality supplements, but it is still cheaper in the long run. Just ticked off that insurance companies can’t see that paying for supplements is less costly than paying for medical catastrophes.

    Love and Light to us all

  27. Joseph says:

    I have read the posts from all of the people who are reporting many of the same BP problems with varying symptoms and like all of them I am also suffering with the same problems. I am not sure, but I may be the oldest member of the erratic BP club on this site. First of all, I have always been an athlete and maintained a well toned body and excellent health. My blood pressure and heart rate were always normal. Actually my heart rate has always ranged in the high 40’s to low 60’s with a BP in the high 90’s to low 100’s. I am talking about 60 years with those readings and always feeling fantastic. About 12 years ago I stopped exercising because of a car accident which laid me up for 7 or 8 months. I do not know why, I just stopped being athletic after that. Regardless, my BP has on only a few occassions that I know of been over 200/105 HR 65. Once I found out that I was having BP problems I started to take readings. They ranged typically between 158 to 180/ 65 HR 50. I found that if I just laid down the BP would drop into the 140’s/65 HR 50-60. The systolic was what would be really erratic. The dystolic was always except only once or twice out of the normal range. I have had a battery of tests and so far there is no arterial problems that have been noted. I have been on thyroid medication for 30 years and my T levels have never been outside the normal range after treatment and medication. I am not diabetic. I recently started using a CPAP machine and I will need to see how much of an effect it has on me long term, although my BP readings are starting to look much better. 110 to 130’s/65 with just an occassional spike in the 160’s. But yesterday, while at work, my eyesight became a little blurry, and the night before my heart started pounding and even had a little ringing in my ears. I rushed to take my BP and found it at 215/120 HR 70. I laid down and waited it out and kept taking my BP and watched it drop minute by minute all the way down to 135/65 HR 46. It is normal today and I am feeling great. What I have noticed and I am starting to realize is that I truly believe my Eratic BP problem has something to do with eating. It seems that when I eat more than I should that is when the BP spiking begins on the high side. I am on 2 different BP meds. Lisinopril and metrolol. I am only 5′7″ and weight 195 so I am definitely overweight and am now on a diet. I have decided to take control of my destiney. I am going back to exercise and proper diet. I have been taking fish oil twice a day and have gotten my triglycerides down to 100 and my cholesterol down to 110. I quit smoking cold Turkey and stopped drinking coffee. I want off the meds and a quality of life back. I will have a few more tests done to be sure it is not just poor living habits that has made me carry nitro tablets in case of emergency. I read on another site that there is a company that has come out with an arterial electric device that is coming under human trials that apparently monitors and corrects constricting and was used on a patient whose BP problems were far worse than anything I read by anyone here, and it has apparently changed her life. I wish you all well and I must say it stinks to be walikng around like a ticking time bomb.

  28. My dad has been in and out of the hospital since his heart attack two months ago. His blood pressure will spike and then plummet. The doctors are unable to figure out why or how to control it. What would cause his erratic blood pressure?

  29. Arthur Matthews says:

    wow now im worried after reading all this. mine started about 4 months ago. started out with massive chest pains. ended up in the er 3 times. and found nothing wrong with me. but they put me on aspirin and nitro. 1 week later i got hit with really bad vertigo lasted almost 2 weeks. nothing they gave me worked or helped and again found nothing wrong with me. then before the vertigo had milded down i started to lose my hearing in my left ear. had mri and everything no reason for it. then i started noticing my blood pressure. my top number was always a little high.140 to 160. but my lower one was always good. but now my lower number was jumping around and playing yoyo. the highest my blood pressure got the i recorded was 180/121. i went through hell convincing my doctor about it cause every time i went in it was always 140/80 ish. i could only get it to lower by completely relaxing and sometimes that took 30 minutes to hours. but finally they put me on meds. yea its lower at relax but does not stop the erratic part.
    i physically cant do anything anymore. blood pressure jumps i feel winded, light headed ,dizzy.
    then my other ear stated losing its hearing and my left got worse. and now if i laugh to hard or strain an any way i black out. i feel like ive been choked out. when i come to i have the throbbing above my forehead and my mouth feels wormy.
    over 3 months now with all this and they finally ordered a full mri on my head and neck. but i just got this funny feeling they are not going to find anything.

    im not even sure i wrote this out right but man i needed to post seeing others with the weird blood pressure.

  30. NK says:

    My wife has been experiencing very similar symptoms like most of you here:
    39 yrs old
    around 100 kg’s
    has ankylosing spondylitis (a kind of joint rheumatism, which results inflammation symptoms during her entire life)
    She also has hypoglycemia
    coronary heart disease story in family members
    + smoker of a pack of cigarettes everyday

    Normally her blood pressure tends to be low with relatively fast heart rate.

    We’ve had two events in the past 2 years, all during sexual intercourse, she was seized with a severe headache mostly at the left side of her neck. We weren’t suspicious about blood pressure at the time.

    She’s had some light incidents with increasing bp manifesting itself with headaches.

    For about two months she complains about an annoying chest and arm pain which directly reminded us a heart issue.

    And finally right now as I’m writing it’s been exactky two weeks since she woke up around 3.00 in the morning saying she’s having a heart attack. She reported having difficulty breathing, her heart about to burst. (bp was probably very high but we couldn’t record that) Directly went to the ER. With the rush that day, we couldn’t identify then but at all the latter episodes she had symptoms of gas – burping, very stiff and bulgy abdomen.
    Afew times,burping started with coughing (as if something obstructs the throat) and ended with vomiting. Mostly she says burping creates relief.
    We wnt to the ER 7 times one of which was a phsyichiatric one. Since simple cardiologic exams leaded us to no results we took our chance at a physichiatry clinic.
    Most symptoms were similar to that of a panic attack so we started to believe that. Dr started essitalopram with alprazolam (xanax- for relieving during getting used to the former med)

    She has attacks right now almost every night -also sometimes during the daytime. With sudden increase in blood pressure.
    (During the ER visits her BP reached up to 190/110 – and more often around 160 for systolic bp- She feels when the attack comes more common while she is lying. She has been walking mostly this week with the fear of having another attack. She’s better when standing up but dizziness and strange feelings in the abdomen are there. Just don’t go away.

    Final visit to a cardiolog we decided there is nothing wrong with the heart. EKG is normal, echo test shows there is a slight relaxation problem at the heart escorting tachycardia. She has a high heart rate. Nothing major. Blood tests just show high cholesterol levels. total chol. 262 and LDL around 180. Rest seems fine.

    But we re still awake almost every night. She is alarmed as if she’ll have it again. and she has… once or twice everyday, even more at times.
    xanax makes her sleep at least later in the night.
    She also has kinda sleep apnea. before this she had sleep walking incidents, talks almost everynight and a very sensitive girl with a perfectionist character, which strengthens the phsychogical diagnosis however she still has the chest and arm pain.

    She had no high bp situation with the holter device attached. Avg. was less than normal bp and highest values around 120/80 :S so funny. We measured an hour ago 154/101 (she was just lying in bed at the time). Just 5 mins. after she stood up with an arm pain and that level of bp (she feels it) it went down to 101/60.

    We re very confused. Can panic attack behave like this and change bp like this

    Do you think we should have an angio to see if there is any obstruction in the veins?

    Kind regards to all friends here

  31. Hui says:

    My BP was around 145/95, but once i take celery juice once a day continuously for a week, my BP drop to 110/70.

    Instead of medication, I prefer to be hook on permanent celery juice. I have been drinking celery juice few times a week ever since.

bottom KellieMyHS

About Kellie

Kellie is 37 years old and together with her brother Steve makes up the My Health Software team.

She helps on the websites and gathering news for the programs. Kellie worked in the medical industry prior to having her two children (8 and 6) and has a strong interest in self awareness and management of health conditions.


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