Sudden high blood pressure

I am 58 year old female, and stand 5'3" and weigh 105 lbs. I am in good physical health and take no medicines for anything. I have a healthy diet and use very little salt. Do not smoke.A year ago I went for a complete annual exam and my BP was 120/70. Now a year later, I just went and my reading was 180/110. There are only 2 things that are different from last year. Last year I was working out intensely 3 days a week. This winter, I am active but not working out. I recently hurt myself lifting our garage door, as the opener broke.  I did it fine several times and then must have had the wrong leverage and heard a pop in my back and it felt like had a severe pull or tearing in my muscles around my ribs on both sides. Since doing this, I have had terrible bouts of gas and when I breathe deeply it still hurts a lot two weeks after the injury. My right side is pretty good, but I am still feeling it on the other side. I told my Dr. about this mishap.She was very concerned about my BP and took it again after my examination while on was still on the table. It read at 180/100. When she took it, it did not hurt, but when her assistant took it, it was very painful. I don't remember ever hurting so bad after having it taken. Her assistant also could not draw blood and after painfully moving the needle around inside my arm, decided to call for help. It was taken in the other arm, with no problem, just as I have always had in the past.The Dr. took an EKG and several tests, but everything came out fine; heart, liver, kidney's etc. My blood sugar and cholesterol were fine too. All my labs were normal.The DR. immediately wanted to put me on Lisinopril-HCTZ 10-12.5 MG. I wanted to wait and have it checked a few more times to make sure it wasn't up for some reason. She said okay, but was not too happy about it. The only other time I had a high reading was when I fell on the ice at work and they made me go to the emergency room to be checked out. It was high then, but the Dr. said it could be from the pain.The Dr. told me to buy a home monitor, but in the meantime go to drugstores with the BP tests. I went to several different ones in case they were not accurate. My numbers have been all over the place. Later that day I had readings of 146/58 and 142/79. Since then they average from the upper number of 130's to high 140's and bottom number from 79 to somewhere in the 80's. I bought a home monitor, but my arm really hurts for hours after, and the numbers are a little higher yet! When the nurse at work took it, it was 140/84.Should I immediately start the Lisinopril or is something else going on? I just want a second opinion as to what I should do.  My insurance company said to just get it checked in six months, but I don’t want to have a stroke during that time.Sorry for the length of this question. Since my exam, I have been very depressed and on edge all the time. Every time I go to take my pressure, I can feel that I am very jittery and nervous, even at home. I can feel my heart beating.  Thanks much.

Hi Cecily,

  • Go back to exercise and ask for ways to avoid that injury. Lots of ways to do so!
  • Those readings of around one 140 are w/i the same range, but prove your BP is too high.
  • Start Lisinopril and stop worrying.
  • Schedule regular appointments in the beginning to monitor your BP and check whether that dose is adequate. Let your doctor worry for you!
  • Check your risk for heart disease
  • If you are at risk, read here what you can do about it.

Hope this helps,
Dr T


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