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Dr. Andrew Rynne

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Is it dangerous if blood pressure dropped to 105/55?

He just had a pacemaker put in three weeks ago. Doctor s post-op checkup two days ago was fine. Heart rate is good. Is the drop in blood pressure this morning a problem? I can t find anything about low blood pressure illness in my medical book.
Thu, 17 Dec 2009
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That is within the range of normal for most adults. You will want to compare this reading to his normal baseline readings. For example, what have his three most recent morning blood pressure results been prior to this one? What is his pulse rate at these times? Does it match the expected pacemaker settings? Is it higher or lower than expected? Was this blood pressure taken during rest or after activity? All of these will affect the reading. Not knowing what his heart condition was that required the use of a pacemaker limits what general informaiton I can give. However, in general, an abnormally low blood pressure will produce symptoms that may include light headedness, dizziness, a loss of consciousness and cool extremities. The range generally considered "low" is a top (systolic) reading of less than 90 and a bottom (diastolic) reading less than 60. However, many healthy people have bottom (diatolic) readings of zero! This is because of the bottom reading reflects the pressure needed for blood returning to the heart to fill it. The lower the resistance to filling, the lower the bottom number. 55 is not anything to worry about in an of itself. Things your husband can do: Change position slowly. When getting up from a lying position, sit quietly on the side of the bed or sofa for a few minutes to allow blood flow to equilbrate. When standing, hold on to a solid object for a moment until he is sure that he doesn 't feel dizzy. Monitor the apical (over the heart) rate with a stethoscope and compare it to the radial (wrist) pulse rate. That will tell the doctor information about the blood perfusion. The number should match or be within two beats of each other allowing for counting errors. Report any symptoms of chest pressure, pain, dizziness or loss of consciousness. In all likelihood, your husband's blood pressure is just fine if he is not experiencing any symptoms. Your health care provider is the person who can interpret al of the findings and help you to feel comfortable with your husband's pacemaker and the care he requires to stay healthy! Other things which can affect the blood pressure are medications such as nitroglycerin, ACE inhibitors, diuretics, antihypertensive medication, pain medication, sedatives, over the counter cold and allergy medications, antidepressive medications, and some herbs and supplements.
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