Are You Experiencing The Early Signs of Hypertension?

Wednesday, January 16, 2019 Philippines


Hello Beauties! I am sorry for the late posts (both on my blog and vlog) as well as the short reviews for products. Last December is a busy month and honestly I lost some inspiration to write here on my blog. It seems that I am experiencing fatigue specially after work. My brain does not want to cooperate to write. That is why I focused on VlogMas instead just to keep in touch with all of you. 

As much as I wanted to do a fresh start for 2019 and to catch up on all of my back logs, it seems that my health also asks me to pay for all the things I did not bother to take care of before. For a change, I am focusing a write-up about health and let this blog post serve as a tool to help you check if you have an early signs of hypertension and also to share my personal experience.

During the first week of January, I am feeling energetic as usual but as to pass time in our nursing unit, our nursing assistant wanted to take my blood pressure. I was shocked because it is the first time that my blood pressure spiked that high. My blood pressure is 160/100 and I am asymptomatic! I do have an idea that my blood pressure sometimes is higher than normal specially when I lack sleep and I am tired but never this high! I am shookt Beauties and Pink Girls!

I am a nurse so I am a little hard-headed when it comes to my health. I feel like I am invulnerable to illness and that I take things that I am sure I can always handle. Sadly, I have to take a reality check that something is wrong with me. 

Within that day, my fellow nurse (and also a friend) tagged me along with her follow-up to a Nephrologist in our work. The Doctor is actually a Pediatrician with specialty but she also handles adult patients. Since we are a Pediatric Nurses that frequently works with her, she is concerned and happy to help us give a free consultation. 

The doctor checked my Blood Pressure and it is even higher than the data taken by our nursing assistant. It is 170/110! Though I am not sure if it increased a notch because I already got worried with my earlier blood pressure reading. Since I am asymptomatic - no headaches or any signs of problems, the doctor speculated that I already have a Chronic Hypertension

What is Chronic Hypertension? 

It is a blood pressure reading greater than or equal to 140/90 in a long-term period. As shared by my doctor, it is considered chronic when the body already adjusted and is used to having a high blood pressure that you already feel asymptomatic. 

So what do you think happened? It means that I used to experience early signs of hypertension without knowing it and it may have been for a few months or years already that my body already adjusted to it so that is why I am feeling extremely normal. 

This is the major problem though, asymptomatic hypertension is a silent killer. It is usually the cause of strokes or cardiac arrests. The heart gets overworked or there is a blockage on your veins or arteries caused by extreme pumping by the heart.

With my history taken, I realized that I did experience some of the common Early Signs of Hypertension and these are as follow: 

1. Severe headache - I always have my Katinko with me. It is a must-have in my purse because I used to have headaches every now and then that I thought was caused by stress and lack of sleep. I also have a pain reliever in my bag for many years now. Imagine, I never thought that my headaches could be caused by my blood pressure. Sometimes I also think that it is migraine. 

2. Pounding in my ears or head - Accompanied by my headaches, I usually experience pounding in my ears or head. 

3. Blurred Vision - My eyes are sometimes hazy when I look at something but I also have astigmatism that is why I did not think that I may have a hypertension. 

4. Fatigue - I always have body aches that I thought caused by prolonged periods at work due to overtime and frequent walking. Now that I think about it, during my rest days I get enough sleep (8 hours or more) and I still feel like it is not enough. 

What may be the causes of hypertension?

There are a lot of factors that can cause hypertension and it includes your lifestyle, diet, genes, other illnesses that you may have, and stress

What laboratories can monitor my hypertension? 

A complete blood work up was ordered by my doctor and I had it done immediately the next day. The work up for my laboratories are required to have a 10 hour fasting. The laboratories ordered to be done are: 

1. Complete blood count with platelet (CBCPC)
2. Fasting Blood Sugar (FBS) 
3. Blood Urea Nitrogen (BUN)
4. Creatinine
5. Triglycerides
6. Cholesterol
7. Lipid Profile (HDL, LDL, VLDL)
8. Uric Acid
8. Alanine Aminotransferase (ALT or SGPT)
9. Urinalysis
10. Mircoalbumin Urine Test

The laboratories done are expensive (I paid 4385php for all of it) but I have to check my health! Remember, health should be a priority. As part of my benefits at the hospital, I do have annual exams but it does not include the essentials on checking for my hypertension. Usually my results are normal that is why I never got worried about it. 

Within the day, I got my results and thankfully all my laboratory findings are normal (I am scared that my fasting blood sugar and creatinine, ALT will be elevated! I am afraid to have a diabetes, a kidney or liver problem) except for: 
- I have a high triglycerides count which means I have fats in my blood
- I also have slightly elevated bad cholesterol and low in good cholesterol which is also related to triglycerides
- My urine has blood positive count on it as well as slightly elevated Albumin which means my body is suffering from hypertension and the kidney is having a hard time filtering that is why a blood and protein already shows in my urine. The blood in the urine can be seen in basic urinalysis test so make sure to check if you have a positive count on it, okay? Specially if you have it regularly done. 

I showed the results to my doctors and I was given medicines for maintenance for my blood pressure and cholesterol. (Losartan with hydrochlorothiazide and Atorvastatin) Thankfully, since my laboratory results are not that high, my medicines are all in just the minimum dosages. 

I was advised to repeat all these laboratories after three months to check if it is already normal and to also check if the medicines are working fine on my body. If not, it will be changed. It usually takes one to two months before my blood pressure be stable or controlled with the medicines that I am taking. 

This experience is a great wake-up call for me that I should take care of my body more. I should not take for granted the sleep that it needs. I should refrain from being stressed though my daily job is a definition of stress. That is why I am taking things slowly this year. I will try my best to still post regularly here on my blog specially since I am now more at ease because I already know what I am battling. 

How to take care of my body better? Just try to follow these steps: 

1. Sleeping at least 8 hours a day.
2. Drinking of water only. (No sodas or juice to help my kidneys recuperate)
3. Avoiding stress as much as I/you can.
4. Eating more healthily.
5. Be more active at the gym. (Definitely after my blood pressure is controlled)
6. To take my maintenance regularly without skipping a dose.
7. Frequent monitoring of my blood pressure.

I also posted this story because I wanted to spread awareness and I hope it helps you all. Let us all practice this while still early. Remember, hypertension can cause more serious complications like kidney failure.

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