Of all the tests run today that I’ve gotten results for (and there were many), high blood pressure was the only one that wasn’t “normal”. It was slightly above normal, but nonetheless, higher than “they” say it should be. (who’s “they”?) Prehypertension maybe?
As any internet junkie does, I took to the Information Superhighway with lots of determination. I had no idea what high blood pressure was, let alone know what it would or was already doing to my body. I am very far from any of these things, but here’s what I found out about it…
- High blood pressure is the most important risk factor for stroke. Very high pressure can cause a break in a weakened blood vessel, which then bleeds in the brain. This can cause a stroke. If a blood clot blocks one of the narrowed arteries, it can also cause a stroke.
- High blood pressure can eventually cause blood vessels in the eye to burst or bleed. Vision may become blurred or otherwise impaired and can result in blindness.
- High blood pressure is a major risk factor for heart attack. The arteries bring oxygen-carrying blood to the heart muscle. If the heart cannot get enough oxygen, chest pain, also known as "angina," can occur. If the flow of blood is blocked, a heart attack results.
- High blood pressure is the number one risk factor for congestive heart failure (CHF). CHF is a serious condition in which the heart is unable to pump enough blood to supply the body's needs.
- The kidneys act as filters to rid the body of wastes. Over time, high blood pressure can narrow and thicken the blood vessels of the kidneys. The kidneys filter less fluid, and waste builds up in the blood. The kidneys may fail altogether. When this happens, medical treatment(dialysis) or a kidney transplant may be needed.
- As people get older, arteries throughout the body "harden," especially those in the heart, brain, and kidneys. High blood pressure is associated with these "stiffer" arteries. This, in turn, causes the heart and kidneys to work harder.
Holy cow, People! Really? High Blood Pressure can cause all of this? Geez. I feel like I’ve learned something very important about myself today, but it still doesn’t answer my questions about why I throw up stomach acid every morning. Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?
It does, however, tell me that my food choices need to change, and I need to actually do some exercising. We all know I eat very shitty, that’s not Front Page news, and I don’t do any sort of exercising, unless you count walking back and forth to the mailbox. I can’t change everything at once, history has proven this over and over to me, so I will start slow.
Deservedly giving credit where credit is due, Sis has unknowingly convinced me to walk. Every day. Her and I walked 2.4 miles yesterday, and today, after my appointment, I walked the same 2.4 miles by myself.
Doc did say to me before I left, “If the test results don’t show us something, you’ll need to go see the Gastro guy. That’s all beyond my study.” Oh yippee. Just who I want to go see. A guy who’s going to shove things in my throat and up my ass. And not in the normal pleasant way I enjoy. No thank you, Sir. I’m likely to not attend that appointment unless someone goes with me, and that’s not likely either.
Still waiting for more results, so no definitive news yet.
-Till next time…