Pregnant after 35

Anyone want to talk to me about high blood pressure?

I had a regular OB appt today and my GD test. Let me preface this by saying I'm wayyyyy stressed at work, been working 12hr days since New Year's and then I work some more when I get home, this should all subside slightly by the end of this week.

My blood pressure today was 143/94. My OB was slightly concerned, I explained to her about work ect, so since I was there for the GD test, she just wanted me to retest after the hour was up to see if it went down. It did go down to 130/90, but they still want me to do the 24hr catch and come back next week for another reading and she's pushing my appts to every 2wks now.

She said worst case scenerio, she'd put me on bedrest/work from home for the rest of my pregnancy. I'm glad it went down, but those numbers could be better. I'm glad to know my OB is being super cautious, whatever I have to do to keep LO and myself healthy is more important.

nate and teddy
Me 41 DH 46  Not actively ttc, surprise BFP on 1/6/11! 4/1/11 m/c our sunshine at 16wks after complications from CVS test. TTC #2 **5th cycle 12/6/11 BFP! Missed m/c at 9 weeks 1/21/12, trisomy 14. Two Chemical PG 3/12&7/12
** BFP 8/16/12 beta #1 148! beta#2 407 beta #3 4000 u/s 9.10 1 lovely hb 126, Baby Boy is due 04/28/13!!
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Re: Anyone want to talk to me about high blood pressure?

  • I have been dealing with HBP now for about 2 weeks - started about 30w.  Per doctor's orders - I am currently working 4 hours a day (mostly mornings) and then it is home to test for the afternoon and then I can do some light duty work around the house at night. I have peaked about 155/95 but am in the upper 130s/high 80s most of the time now.  Luckily I don't have any symptoms of pre-E, just hypertension.  I really think my nerves get the best of me at the doctor's office.  I am going in weekly now and will have fetal non-stress tests 1-2 times a week.
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  • Have either of you ladies thought about a home blood pressure cuff? They have kinds you put on your wrist that work pretty well, and if you think the doctor's office might be pushing your numbers up, it couldn't hurt to measure at home when you feel relaxed and see if your numbers are lower. And if they are, you can record them and take that info to your doc as well. (I have one and check my BP 2-3 times a week, whenever I think of it.)
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  • I ended up with labile hypertension, and was getting random readings at 160/100, when the day before and even the next day it would be 120/80. They did a 24-hour urine catch to set a baseline for kidney function for the pregnancy, and it came back normal. My OB and I talked out the options and I'm now on low dose methyldopa (250 mg/3xday). It's working very well and I'm averaging 117/78. However, if my pressures start to climb again, which he said was possible, then I will push bed rest over a dosage increase, just because it leaves us more wiggle room for dosage increases later on, and I have every reason to believe that my OB will support this decision.

     

    AMA over 40
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  • I had HBP before we even started.  I did the 24 hour catch after my first OB appointment and 9w my PCP increased my methyldopa to 500mg/2xday (up from 250) and so far that seems to be doing the trick.
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    Cycle 12, IUI #1 - 33m post wash 10/15/10 = BFN
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    Cycle 15 - 18, IUI #3-6 = BFN
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  • I, too, have hypertension from before pregnancy. Was on methyldopa for months but it stopped working and my OB switched me to labetalol which seems to be working better but we are still titrating it and I still have some high readings here and there. It's tough because stressing about it makes the BP worse but it's hard not to!! I'm only 11 weeks and hope we can get it under control soon!
  • I had preeclampsia with my last pregnancy, so I know all about pregnancy-induced HBP.  I normally have very low blood pressure though.  I'm sorry you're having to go through this, but it does sound like your doc is on top of things.  Although, I'm not sure bed rest really helps, but a lot of docs still prescribe it. 

    I second the PPs suggestion that you buy an at home monitor.  Not just to see if it matches the doc's numbers, but to keep tabs on it more often than every few weeks.  You can get a good one for about $60.  If it spikes up, it helps to lie down on your left side.  That will bring it down at least for the moment.

    Melissa

     

    Me - 38 DH - 38 DD - 2 pregnancy
  • Thanks Ladies, I have a cuff buried somewhere in my closet from an episode of HBP I had several years ago when I was on birth control, stopped birth control and blood pressure returned to normal in a few weeks, ever since then my primary care has monitored it and it is typically normal but anything can throw it off, lack of sleep, a cold ect. I guess it's time to dig it out.

    This sounds ridiculous but it scares me to monitor at home, I'm afraid of what I'll find out! But it's clear that many of you are managing this well with medication ect, so it's best for me to be proactive. I'm kind of resigned to the fact I unfortunately inherited my dad's hbp and of course not his ridiculously high metabolism!!!

    nate and teddy
    Me 41 DH 46  Not actively ttc, surprise BFP on 1/6/11! 4/1/11 m/c our sunshine at 16wks after complications from CVS test. TTC #2 **5th cycle 12/6/11 BFP! Missed m/c at 9 weeks 1/21/12, trisomy 14. Two Chemical PG 3/12&7/12
    ** BFP 8/16/12 beta #1 148! beta#2 407 beta #3 4000 u/s 9.10 1 lovely hb 126, Baby Boy is due 04/28/13!!
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  • I have a cuff at home, too.  Lower numbers here than at the clinic.  And I definitely spike it I get dehydrated or don't get enough sleep.  I might ask about meds at my checkup this week if I stay high.
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  • image gundy21:
    I have a cuff at home, too.  Lower numbers here than at the clinic.  And I definitely spike it I get dehydrated or don't get enough sleep.  I might ask about meds at my checkup this week if I stay high.

     

    I definately notice mine is affected by alot of factors, I didn't drink much water at all before my appt today and had horrible night of sleep last night!!! Good luck Gundy,  I hope its staying low, you're getting so close, time is really flying by!!! 

    nate and teddy
    Me 41 DH 46  Not actively ttc, surprise BFP on 1/6/11! 4/1/11 m/c our sunshine at 16wks after complications from CVS test. TTC #2 **5th cycle 12/6/11 BFP! Missed m/c at 9 weeks 1/21/12, trisomy 14. Two Chemical PG 3/12&7/12
    ** BFP 8/16/12 beta #1 148! beta#2 407 beta #3 4000 u/s 9.10 1 lovely hb 126, Baby Boy is due 04/28/13!!
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  • I am getting so frustrated with my BP.  Today I clocked in at 164/103.  The 24 hour urines are so gross and I am sick of doing them.  I have tried everything to get it down.  I have handed over all of my work responsibilities.  I am just an advisor now while the people taking over for me will start doing the real work.  I took a relaxation class.  I am on a very very low sodium diet.  When I get home, I lay on the couch until DH gets dinner ready.  Then I eat and lay down again.  Even the BP meds don't seem to be touching it.  I say that to say, don't blame yourself for your BP.  Sometimes it just runs in families.  My doctor did tell me that if I went on bedrest it would be hospitalized.

    I feel better just getting that off of my chest.  If you want to vent about your BP, I am here.

    BFP on IVF #2 6/29/2012. Beta #1 7/3 = 522; Beta #2 = 1180; Beta #3 = 6491 image BabyFruit Ticker
  • CG, I am so sorry you are having such trouble with your BP. You are doing everything right and it still isn't responding--that just plain sucks. I can't imagine how frustrated you must be.
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    Over-40 parents...what we lack in vigor, we make up for with cunning.
  • Funny you mentioned this....I was sent to L&D yesterday after my OB appt. because my bp was a little high (137/97). The higher number was borderline, but the diastolic (lower #) remained high. I stayed in L&D for just an hour because while laying down and relaxing, my bp readings were perfect - 120's/70's. So I was sent home. My doctor says I'll probably be a frequent visitor to L&D. I'm being monitored for my bp from the very beginning because I developed pregnancy induced hypertension (PIH) after gving birth to DD. So I'm having to take my bp at home daily, and if I get consistent readings of of 140/90, I have to get myself to L&D. As PP said, you should get yourself a bp monitor to measure at home. I'm surprised your doctor hasn't instructed you to monitor at home. So far, my bp readings haven't been consistently high, therefore I haven't been diagnosed as hypertensive yet. My fear is developing pre-e or being put on bed rest this early. I don't mind the bp because there are ways to treat it, and hopefully bed rest will be much later. But you can't mess around with pre-e.

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  • I feel for all  you ladies going through this...as if we needed more stress added to our pregnancies! My doctor has me monitoring my blood pressure on a daily basis because I had a history of having higher blood pressure before I lost weight and a history of high blood pressure in my family as well.  So far I've been able to keep it in the normal range but it does spike every time I'm at the doctor's office...nurse says I have 'white coat syndrome'... :)  I'm hoping it's all this prenatal yoga that I'm doing and listening to my pregnancy mediation cds has really helped me relax.
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  •  Well its nice to know I'm not alone though I wish none of us had to deal with this. I love my prenatal meditation cds, I'm going to make a goal to listen to them at least once a day and get off my butt more and at least go walking on the treadmill. I tried my prenatal yoga last week and it was pathetic, I could barely finish it!
    nate and teddy
    Me 41 DH 46  Not actively ttc, surprise BFP on 1/6/11! 4/1/11 m/c our sunshine at 16wks after complications from CVS test. TTC #2 **5th cycle 12/6/11 BFP! Missed m/c at 9 weeks 1/21/12, trisomy 14. Two Chemical PG 3/12&7/12
    ** BFP 8/16/12 beta #1 148! beta#2 407 beta #3 4000 u/s 9.10 1 lovely hb 126, Baby Boy is due 04/28/13!!
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  • My child was born at 28 weeks and my blood pressure was 201/94.  I had no idea it was that high b/c I hadn't been able to get to the OB for 2 months b/c we were having transpo issues.  Plus I couldn't walk to get to a bus stop.  I had no idea and one day just started bleeding and went to the hospital.  They wouldn't even let me go home until my BP was around what you (OP) said your BP is now.  This time.... I am now 17 weeks along and around 20 weeks.... every couple of days I will check my BP b/c I now have a home BP cuff that works very well and takes your pulse too :)  Just keep an eye on it and you will be fine.  If it's pre-e then just know that my baby that was born at 28 weeks is just fine now and we're very blessed :)
  • Hello,

       I have had high blood pressure for over 2 years (obviously unrelated to my pregnancy).  I can tell you with 100% certainty that being wayyy stressed will cause your BP to be high.  I know others have mentioned this, but you can purchase a digital BP cuff at any drugstore (CVS, Walgreens, etc.) for $20 or so.  130/90 is considered (according to my cardiologist) to be pre-hypertension so it's something that they would want to monitor.  There is BP medicine that is safe during pregnancy.  I am taking one referred to as HCTZ...I forget what it stands for but a quick search on google would tell you the actual name.  I was previously on Maxide but once I started TTC they changed my meds to HCTZ because it is one of a few that is safe for pregnant women.  As far as doing a 24 hr catch, I'm not familiar with that but if you buy a cuff, the doctors have asked me to take my bp around the same time everyday for 5 days straight and report those to help them know if it was a fluke that one day it was high.  Also, I was told to always make sure my bladder is not full before they take my BP because apparently it will read higher if you have to go to the bathroom (don't we always have to go to the bathroom during pregnancy :) Also, if your BP is high when you are at a doctor's office, ask them to take it manually...I had a cardiologist tell me that the manual check is MUCH more accurate.  Good luck and if there is anything you can to reduce your stress, try.

    image
  • image kaneohekoala:
      I am taking one referred to as HCTZ...I forget what it stands for but a quick search on google would tell you the actual name.  I was previously on Maxide but once I started TTC they changed my meds to HCTZ because it is one of a few that is safe for pregnant women. 

    That's interesting, because my PCP took me right off of an HCTZ medication.  Maybe mine was in combination with something else.  Now I'm curious and want to go dig around.

    My Life in D.C.
    The Daily Nugget

    mom and me
    Cycle 12, IUI #1 - 33m post wash 10/15/10 = BFN
    Cycle 13, IUI #2 - 15m post wash 11/16/10 = BFP, missed m/c, D&C 1/3/11
    Cycle 15 - 18, IUI #3-6 = BFN
    Cycle 20, IUI #7 = BFP!, missed m/c 9/14, D&C
    DE-IVF Aug. 2012: ER 8/30 11R, 7M, 4F; ET 9/4 returned 2
    Beta 9/18 #1-820, #2-1699, #3-7124
    10/1 1st u/s measuring right on track, 125 bpm

    Baby Birthday Ticker Ticker
  • image kaneohekoala:

    Hello,

       I have had high blood pressure for over 2 years (obviously unrelated to my pregnancy).  I can tell you with 100% certainty that being wayyy stressed will cause your BP to be high.  I know others have mentioned this, but you can purchase a digital BP cuff at any drugstore (CVS, Walgreens, etc.) for $20 or so.  130/90 is considered (according to my cardiologist) to be pre-hypertension so it's something that they would want to monitor.  There is BP medicine that is safe during pregnancy.  I am taking one referred to as HCTZ...I forget what it stands for but a quick search on google would tell you the actual name.  I was previously on Maxide but once I started TTC they changed my meds to HCTZ because it is one of a few that is safe for pregnant women.  As far as doing a 24 hr catch, I'm not familiar with that but if you buy a cuff, the doctors have asked me to take my bp around the same time everyday for 5 days straight and report those to help them know if it was a fluke that one day it was high.  Also, I was told to always make sure my bladder is not full before they take my BP because apparently it will read higher if you have to go to the bathroom (don't we always have to go to the bathroom during pregnancy :) Also, if your BP is high when you are at a doctor's office, ask them to take it manually...I had a cardiologist tell me that the manual check is MUCH more accurate.  Good luck and if there is anything you can to reduce your stress, try.

    Not all high blood pressure is related to stress.  Pre-e is often a herediary condition.  The manual check is not more accurate than the auto cuffs that are now available over the counter.  I was an emergency cardiac nurse and I can assure you that we almost never used manual cuffs.  I worked in the third highest ranked cardiac unit in the country so we knew our stuff.  Taking BPs once a day is really not appropriate if pre-e symptoms are starting to emerge.  To get a true indication of what is going on it needs to happen much more frequently.  HCTZ is a diuretic or a water pill so it will not help all kinds of hypertension.  There are more appropriate meds for those that only have high BP during pregnancy.

    BFP on IVF #2 6/29/2012. Beta #1 7/3 = 522; Beta #2 = 1180; Beta #3 = 6491 image BabyFruit Ticker
  • Rebaann,

    I was originally on Maxide which I thought was the same as HCTZ but was told that Maxide contains HCTZ and something else.  I know Maxide has other names too.  Was told HCTZ is completely safe...definitely doesn't hurt to look into it further though.

    image
  • Country Girl in the City,

       You are absolutely right that NOT ALL HIGH BLOOD PRESSURE is related to Stress and if my post gave that impression, I apologize.  I was not at all referring to Pre-e, I know there are other BPs that are UNRELATED to stress but know that stress absolutely CAN affect your BP so while reducing stress helps for a lot of reasons, it won't get rid of hypertension.  Regarding the manual check vs auto cuffs, that is interesting to hear that they are not more accurate...it has always been in the cardiologist offices that they have used the manual vs automatic and that is where I was told manual was more accurate.  Based on your experience as an emergency cardiac nurse, I'm sure you are better informed on which cuff works best.  My point in mentioning the cuff initially was that it's a good idea to get one and monitor your BP regularly.  As for HCTZ, you are absolutely right that it is a diuretic but it is very effective for some hypertension and has worked very well for me.  My advice was not intended to tell someone to take the medicine I'm taking, but to talk to their doctor as they will give the best advice.  The doctors know what is safe during pregnancy and what is not. 

    image
  • Rebaann,

    I posted this info in another question about BP today, but there is a website called www.drugs.com that will give you info about various medications - basically just what category the drug is considered (category A, B, C, etc.) if you type in the medicine that you were on, it will say which category it is.  For HCTZ, it is category B which states, "FDA pregnancy category B. HCTZ is not expected to be harmful to an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant during treatment. Hydrochlorothiazide can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Do not use HCTZ without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby." I guess I'll be sure to talk to my doctor before the baby is born to determine if I should use another medicine while breast feeding.  If you read something on this website that concerns you, talk to your doctor.  On you and your doctor can make the best decision for you.  I will say I have no medical training and my previous posts were based on my personal experiences.

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