Blood Pressure Surges

I have blood pressure surges -in other words my BP can be 104/62 and in 15 minutes it is 190/88. I feel nervous and chilly ( I used to be hot and flushed but after my right renal artery stent was placed that changed) , my feet tingle and I feel dizzy (plus a headache). I take Clonodine 0.2 Mgm orally and Hydralazine 50 Mgm orally and lay down until it passes
(in about an hour). Does anyone else have this symptom and how does your physician tell you to treat it? I used to pack my head in ice when the headache was unbearable but take Tylenol ES ii most of the time.
It is very uncomfortable and makes me afraid to drive
much as what do you do with traffic? A real dilemma!
I love to shop -what woman doesn't ? so I save money
but it curtails a pleasure.

Report post

12 replies. Join the discussion

Wow, that very thing happened to me this summer. I would spike at about 5 pm every day to like 190/90. My arms and hands would tingle and I would be flushed in the face, very dizzy, faint, headache. I wasn't on a BP med but my doc had given me Clonodine .1 to take when this happened. (I had 911 on speed dial) Unfortunately I found out I had a bad reaction to the Clonodine and it worsened my spike. I was so nervous no one could understand me when I called them. It was horrible. It would last at least an hour, as yours did. I went in right away for my 1st brain MRI & MRA w and w/o dye to make sure I was clear of dissections or aneurysms. My FMD doc thinks I was so stressed over my upcoming MRI that it caused this. After I got an "all clear" it never happened again. I have recently gone on a beta blocker and my BP has stablized and all is fine now.

It was the the most frightening thing ever. Stress is horrible for FMD. I just had to learn to live with it. I was diagnosed in June 2010 with carotid FMD in both arteries.

Report post

I have those spikes, they are horrid. My BP is currently very unstable, and high, but I can cope with the slow increases, to high, better than the sudden spikes. I have niphedipine to deal with the spikes, and now also have a nitroglycerin patch, for when it spikes over 210/115. Prior to diagnosis, I had spikes that caused vomiting, flushing, severe headaches and palpitations, I dont get palpitations as often now.

I was finding some of my drugs caused spikes, they dropped my bp, but around 4 hours later, I would have massive rebound spikes. I was usually worst in the late afternoon, early evening.

My nephrologist said that renal FMD can also cause swings in BP, not just high BP, but may cause sudden severe spikes. I now rarely drive, especially in the afternoon. I am concerned that my symptoms may lead to an accident. Coming home this afternoon, I had sudden severe nausea, and was dry reaching. Thankfully I was a passenger in the car. My BP was "only" 195/95 when I got home.

Last year, I had severe spike, nausea, flushing, and then had numbness in the side of my face and upper arm. I called my local doctor, and went in to see him, after taking meds to drop my BP. He thought the numbness might be stress related , worrying about my BP being so high (even tho Ive had worse spike, and was not anxious.. the numbness made me anxious!) My Kidney specialist who I saw the following week disagreed, and said the symptoms were not "in my head" or stress related, but a result of hypertension, and probably a result of hypertensive encephalopathy. As I understand it, "stress" can raise our BP by about 10mmHG.. but it is usually a physical cause if the raise is much higher.

I have renal, iliac and carotid FMD, and have had renal and ileac balloon angioplasty, and renal artery stent. My spikes returned about 18 months ago, it appears as result of renal damage, from FMD. I hope you can find the cause, and treatment for the spikes
Chris

Report post

kittieboy and chrisPJ- Thank you both so much for replying! My spikes are also in the afternoon or evening even though I
take most of my BP medications twice a day which should have "evened it out". Some physicians think that Clonodine has
a rebound affect but I couldn't make it without Clonodine that works to lower my spikes. The interventional radiologist also
told me that even if a stent is placed ( I had one placed in my right renal artery in May, 2011) if the FMD is severe which mine is, the BP can still surge. Tekturna and Lisinopril ( I am on maximum does of both) reduce the renin level but there are a number of
chemicals that control BP in the kidneys, I still have the surges.

I carry a BP monitor, medications (Clonodine, Hydralazine, Tylenol ES and Ativan) in a bag whereever I go. I even carry it out walking. I am not bothered by checking my BP in a restaurant or when I feel anxious. It warns me that my BP is going up. I was never an anxious person but my cardiologist agrees that hypertensive surges cause anxiety. Some physicians diagnosed me with panic attacks which was really bothering me but the why I think of them now is "if a patient is diagnosed with anxiety- first find out if he/she has a physical illness and when that is ruled out -treat the anxiety". I was a Coroner for 20 years and that takes
"nerves of steel" as I saw really terrible cases so I think my personality is not of a hysterical nature. A small dose of Ativan used
only when the BP surges is very helpful to me.

Chris, What medication caused your rebound hypertension?

kittieboy- the tingling in the extremities is terrible - sometimes I can't walk and stagger if I try to.

I hope that you both feel better soon! This website is great for learning from each other and sharing so we don't feel alone fighting this disease. Strength does come from sharing!

Report post

The main thing that brings peace to me is that someone understands this and I'm not the only one that has experinced this "spike". Thank you both so much for the responses. Judy

Report post

kittyboy,

I know the feeling of knowing other people have the same symptoms! I was beginning to think maybe I was "crazy".
Some physicians and nurses told me that I took my blood pressure too often and I said "give yourself the feeling
of being so out of control, you don't know if you can get home from a 1 mile drive and you'll know how FMD feels".
One day I was in a store and I thought I was going to fall on the floor so got in my car ,took my BP and medications
and finally drove home after an hour. One physician I had, experienced a cerebral aneurysm at the age of 29 and she
said "I know the feeling". Now I barely drive as I am afraid of causing an accident or getting somewhere and I can't get
home. Fortunately, I finally located a cardiologist, internist and nephrologist who are older and know something about
FMD.

Report post

Fmdjade, so glad you found physician you are happy with. For me the doc does not have to be up on the newest info if he is willing to research and learn the newest info!! I have also found a new neph who is very interested and listens to my input!!! Wish more docs would learn the new info, hopefully with all this new info coming out it will happen!!!
Thank you for all the valuable info you share!

Report post

Hi FMDjade, Totally know what you are going through. It took the right b/p meds to get me controlled. Attached is an article that the University of Virginia did on FMD. http://uvahealth.com/services/vascular-center/a-strong-bond
Maureen

Report post

I noticed everytime the Dr put me on a new pill my blood pressure would go up. I finally talked him into slowly going off all but 1 blood pressure pill. I have been able to keep it down for 3 months now. (knock on wood)

Report post

moewomack,

The website that you cited helped me greatly! I think anyone with BP surges should read about this patient! I felt
just like her and 12 visits to the ER in the past 6 years. I did not have the support that she had and was treated like
my problem was not physical. My solution was an angioplasty the first time in 2005 but not since then.

Thank you so much for citing this case!

emob- glad to hear that are feeling better!

Report post

Thank you FMD Jade. I believe a lot of us struggle with this and it truly can puzzle physicians who are not familiar with FMD and how it can present itself.
Take Care
Maureen

Report post

Thanks for sharing Maureen. Ever little bit of info helps all of us. Great web site!

Report post

Thank you for the article link! Keeping our blood pressure controlled can be quite a challenge. What is considered a "safe" range of blood pressure readings for patients with FMD? Is there a specific "stroke level" blood pressure in people with our risk factors? I ask because last year I had to live with readings of 160+/100+ (on medication) for long periods. My GP would not adjust the medication, saying I was not at a "stroke level". My medication was adjusted later by another doctor.

Report post

This discussion is closed to replies. We close all discussions after 90 days.

If there's something you'd like to discuss, click below to start a new discussion.

Things you can do

Support FMDSA

Help the Fibromuscular Dysplasia Society of America reach its goals and support people like yourself by making a donation today.

Donate to the Fibromuscular Dysplasia Society of America

Discussion topics

Resources from FMDSA

Community leaders