Written by KURA Writer- Rylee Nelson
Orthostatic hypotension is a medical condition affecting blood pressure when individuals move from sitting or lying to standing. This condition can result in various symptoms, such as dizziness, lightheadedness, and fainting. Monitoring blood pressure regularly is crucial for individuals with orthostatic hypotension to manage the condition and prevent possible complications. However, measuring blood pressure accurately can be challenging in such individuals due to the fluctuations in blood pressure levels during position changes. The recommendation from the CDC of how to measure orthostatic blood pressure is (CDC, 2017):
● First lie down for 5 minutes
● Then measure blood pressure and pulse
● Following that stand up
● After 1 minute of standing take blood pressure and pulse
● After 3 minutes of standing take blood pressure and pulse a final time
The CDC says that if there’s lightheadedness, dizziness, there’s a drop in blood pressure ≥20 mmHg or in diastolic blood pressure of ≥10 mmHg, then you may have orthostatic hypotension and you should check with your doctor. (CDC, 2017). You should also check with your doctor if you feel dizzy when standing up from sitting. Having a friend or family member help you check your blood pressure may be helpful.
Every time you take your blood pressure, you should write it down to take the results to your doctor. Your doctor will tell you how often they would like you to check your blood pressure and when to bring in your results. Always follow your doctor’s advice and maintain regular appointments to monitor your blood pressure and ensure proper management of your orthostatic hypotension. By working closely with your healthcare provider, you can take control of your condition and make informed decisions about your health.
CDC. (2017). Assessment measuring orthostatic blood pressure. https://www.cdc.gov/steadi/pdf/Measuring_Orthostatic_Blood_Pressure-print.pdf