Happy Thursday all! It is that time of the week to discuss a new topic, and this weeks topic is rebound hypertension. Never heard of it? If you have been diagnosed with hypertension, then it’s something that you should become familiar with so you can avoid it, and that’s what we’re here to help you with today…
Let’s start with defining hypertension. Hypertension is the medical term for high blood pressure. It is measured by the systolic and diastolic pressure on the blood vessel walls as the blood flows in the arteries. There are two types of hypertension. The first and most common type is primary (essential) hypertension. There is no cure for it and no underlying cause. It occurs in 95% of hypertension cases. The second type is secondary hypertension. This is hypertension caused by an underlying condition. For example, kidney disease, heart disease, liver disease, and blood related diseases. This occurs in only 5% of the cases.
Which then brings us to rebound hypertension. Rebound hypertension occurs when the blood pressure is elevated in response to stopping or reducing hypertension medication. There are several things that can cause rebound hypertension. The patient themselves usually cause rebound hypertension by discontinuing their medication without consulting with their physician. Most people stop taking their medication because they feel better or have side effects from their medications. Another cause can be by a drug interaction. There are certain drugs when combined can lead to rebound hypertension. It is really important to make sure that you are communicating with your physician about what medications you are taking. T
If you have rebound hypertension you are at a greater risk of having resistant hypertension. Resistant hypertension is defined as high blood pressure that remains uncontrolled despite treatment with at least three antihypertensive agents, one of which is usually a diuretic. Complications from rebound hypertension can be so severe that it can cause organ damage and even blindness in extreme cases. You are also at greater risk for heart attacks, stroke and heart failure.
To help avoid rebound hypertension, avoid stopping the medication without first consulting with your physician. Lifestyle changes may also be needed. Decreasing your sodium intake, exercise and weight reduction can help as well.