Thursday, July 4, 2013

My BP on Drugs

I was never particularly good at chemistry. So I'm most grateful for those are. This little molecule, should it perform as expected, will likely help me live a longer and healthier life. It is known as hydrochlorothiazide and just this morning I ingested my first 12.5 milligram capsule of the stuff. After donating blood last month and having my blood pressure come in at a frightening 148/98, I made an appointment with my doctor to discuss the possibility of medicating my normal bordering on high blood pressure tendency. Such is the legacy from my mother's side of the family where pretty much every adult was on meds for this malady. So far I don't feel any different, but the fact is I didn't feel any different when my bp was slightly elevated. Hypertension is for the most part a symptom-free condition. Only if you are considered to be in a hypertensive crisis* will symptoms such as headache, anxiety, shortness of breath or nosebleeds appear. Up until now I have been able to manage without medication by keeping my weight in a normal range and staying fairly active. But it seems that age is catching up with me in the sense that my arteries simply are not as pliable as they used to be. And as prescription medications go, this is an affordable one. Three month's worth cost me ten bucks. At approximately a penny a day, not having my head explode is quite a bargain. Not to mention much neater.

*Systolic pressure over 180 or diastolic pressure exceeding 110. Normal bp is at or below 120/80.

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