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Chronic low blood pressure dangerous says cardiologist

A consultant cardiologist, Dr Ramond Moronkola, on Thursday cautioned that chronic low blood pressure was dangerous to human health.

Moronkola, who works with the Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH), made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Lagos.

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He said that chronic low blood pressure rarely manifested obvious symptoms.

He also said that many Nigerians were trying to lower their blood pressure and warned against “allowing blood pressure to fall to dangerous levels known in medical science as orthostatic hypotension”.

Orthostatic hypotension, also known as postural hypotension, is a condition of sudden drop in blood pressure caused by a change in posture, such as when a person stands up quickly.

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Moronkola, however, said that the condition was common among people who were 65 years of age or older because the body’s ability to react to drops in blood pressure could slow down as a person ages.

According to him, low blood pressure has no regard for age, gender, weight, cardiovascular, kidney or diabetic status.

The cardiologist said that insufficient brain blood flow plays a critical role in the development of low blood pressure.

He said that the problem could occur when blood pressure drops suddenly and the brain was deprived of adequate blood supply which could lead to dizziness or lightheadedness.

“Low blood pressure occurs when blood pressure is much lower than normal.

“This means the heart, brain, and other parts of the body do not get enough blood. Meanwhile, the normal blood pressure is mostly between 90/60 mmHg and 120/80 mmHg.

“Low blood pressure does not usually require treatment. If a person experiences regular symptoms of low blood pressure, however, he/she should see a doctor.

“This will enable the doctor to detect the underlying condition causing the drop in blood pressure and treat it accordingly,” he said.

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He listed some possible causes of low blood pressure to include loss of fluid within the blood vessels due to dehydration brought about by diarrhea, vomiting, and the use of medication, such as diuretics or water pills.

He added that loss of blood, anaemia, and other conditions that result in a lower red blood count were also likely causes.

The cardiologist said that a sudden drop in blood pressure occurs more commonly when people rise from lying or sitting positions, to standing, and particularly advised pregnant women to take note of that.

He said that lower blood pressure could lead to stroke, heart attacks, kidney failure and shock, warning that if not properly managed, death could occur.

Moronkola advised Nigerians to obtain monitors to enable them to check their blood pressure levels regularly, saying that health was the vehicle that carries humans through the journey of life. (NAN)

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