Monday, November 22, 2010


On Friday, feeling very ill, short of breath, suffering peripheral edema, and in a great deal of pain in my back, neck, hands, feet, and joints (especially my knees); I went to my doctor.

While I was there, I became flushed and short of breath. My blood pressure was taken, and read out at 196/138. The nurse practitioner thought she must be mistaken, so took it three times, with only a slight difference each time.

Apparently, for at least part of the day Friday I was in hypertensive crisis.

Literally two minutes later, my BP was back down below 160/110, so they didnt rush me over to the ER, but obviously this was a big concern.

My BP had been normal the last time we had talked, and I had been taking my BP every week or so since going back on hormone therapy and it had been up a little, but still well within normal range. Given the history, and that both the medications I'm taking and the LHAP class of disorders are known to cause, or increase risk for hypertension; we decided that it was likely induced by the medication, and that we would discontinue it immediately.

A blood pressure as high as I read on Friday carries significant risks. Stroke, heart attack, organ damage, aneurysm, blindness... It's very much a not good thing.

At any rate, I immediately went to the hospital for more tests, by which time my BP had subsided back to normal; where it has been ever since.

I was told to take aspirin, and given a scrip for vasodilators (no joke. Viagra. Apparently its one of the best meds to give for transient hypertension. It was originally designed as a hypertension drug, and the erectile dis-function treatment was just a side effect)) should a problem recur; but the next week is a real danger.

The medications I'm on, especially the hormones, are delivered by deep muscle injection, and are persistent for three weeks. I had just injected them the night before (which is why we're pretty sure the problem started Friday. The concentration in my system probably wasnt high enough til a few hours after the injection), so for the next week the levels in my system are high enough they could induce another hypertensive crisis.

I have to monitor my BP at least three times a day, or whenever I feel any of the possible indicators. I need to restrict my physical activity, and not do anything strenuous, or that would get my BP up. Also no meds that would either dramatically drop, or increase, my BP (like cold medicine).

I'm not to be left alone for more than a few hours, or drive by myself either.

Finally, I need to be especially on the lookout for potential symptoms of heart attack or stroke; and never to be more than a few minutes away from a hospital.

The additional test results from Friday should be back on Tuesday, and I'll go back to see my dock next week (or earlier if the hypertension recurs).