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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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Exp 50 years

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Suggest treatment for fluctuations in BP and constant headaches

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Dr. Olsi Taka

Neurologist

Practicing since :2004

Answered : 3493 Questions

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Posted on Thu, 2 Mar 2017 in Headache and Migraines
Question: Hey Doc. I am a 45 Yr Old Man (5'11" - 215 Lbs) and I have had a recent fluctuation in my Blood Pressure (Recent readings 152/85, 148/88 & 160/85) followed by a constant headache that becomes unbearable by the end of the day. I have Zero Energy and when I exercise strenuously (Play Ice Hockey) I get a sharp shooting pain down my left arm to the point of numbness in my hand. I have seen my Doctor (last week) and he immediately ordered a full bloodwork which he will follow up with me on Thursday. He also ordered a stress test which I have yet to complete. I am just concerned with this headache as to me its my body telling me something. I also do not like having to take Tylenol 3 times/day just so I can function but even that doesn't seem to touch the pain. Any suggestions??
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Answered by Dr. Olsi Taka 58 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Blood pressure or tension type headache most likely causes

Detailed Answer:
I read your question carefully and I understand your concern.

Headache can have many causes. One of those causes is well known to be high blood pressure. Those values you mention are all above the norm and they indicate that Ramipril treatment alone is not enough (of the medications you mention that is the only one for high blood pressure). So the first step would be to address blood pressure as its normalization may also improve the headache issue. It is good that your doctor has ordered some tests which will serve also to exclude metabolic or hormonal alterations which could also lead to headache and the low energy levels your describe.

If blood pressure values improve and tests come back normal then the other most likely cause would be tension type headache. It is the most common cause of primary headaches (primary meaning without an identifiable cause). They are commonly triggered by stress and anxiety, which is one of the reasons it typically increases by the end of the day. In terms of alleviating it over the counter pain killers like Ibuprofen or Naproxen may be used occasionally (Tylenol usually not that effective), but if it is a chronic issue preventive regular treatment with amitriptyline is preferred.

I remain at your disposal for further questions.
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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