High Blood pressure

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1ab

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Hi all, I had a medical the other day and failed on high blood pressure ( I am hoping it's just white coat syndrome) I have been told to contact my gp to get to the bottom of it. The problem being I've rang the doctors but can't get seen for a few days and i just wondered what the procedure is ( meds, monitor etc) I was due to begin working for the toc in 4 weeks, will this be enough time to get it sorted from the doctors as obviously covid is slowing everything down. Will the toc still want me after failing the medical?
 
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simonw

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Hi all, I had a medical the other day and failed on high blood pressure ( I am hoping it's just white coat syndrome) I have been told to contact my gp to get to the bottom of it. The problem being I've rang the doctors but can't get seen for a few days and i just wondered what the procedure is ( meds, monitor etc) I was due to begin working for the toc in 4 weeks, will this be enough time to get it sorted from the doctors as obviously covid is slowing everything down. Will the toc still want me after failing the medical?
Depends on how high it is. The Dr can certainly give you meds, you can do other things such as change your diet, exercise etc. Meds should kick in quite quickly, but as I say it depends how high is high.

Also you can buy machines to check your blood pressure at home, may be worth investing in one in any event.
 

1ab

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Depends on how high it is. The Dr can certainly give you meds, you can do other things such as change your diet, exercise etc. Meds should kick in quite quickly, but as I say it depends how high is high.

Also you can buy machines to check your blood pressure at home, may be worth investing in one in any event.
Thanks for getting back to me I think it was 180/115 178/118 180/120 it just wouldn't come down!

I might have to invest in one of those machines always good to have I suppose!

I just don't want to miss this opportunity after waiting nearly a year to fall at the final hurdle.
 

TheGoldfish

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Thanks for getting back to me I think it was 180/115 178/118 180/120 it just wouldn't come down!

I might have to invest in one of those machines always good to have I suppose!

I just don't want to miss this opportunity after waiting nearly a year to fall at the final hurdle.
Mine was high in the day and I couldn’t get dr appt ... I got a machine off Amazon about a tenner ... and took readings 4 times a day over several days and gave the times taken and results to the toc dr. And he accepted it as ok

white coat syndrome... think mine was about 180/120 on the day Lol!
 

vikingdriver

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Thanks for getting back to me I think it was 180/115 178/118 180/120 it just wouldn't come down!

I might have to invest in one of those machines always good to have I suppose!

I just don't want to miss this opportunity after waiting nearly a year to fall at the final hurdle.

I got diagnosed with white coat syndrome when I was younger. Had to wear a blood pressure monitor for 24 hours and from that they decided it was within normal limits.

I always lay off the coffee and alcohol for about a week before I have a medical these days, it still reads a bit high but little things like that can bring it down a bit anyway.
 

Chumba

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Mine was high (although the third reading taken just before the end of the medical was only just over) I went to see my GP a couple of weeks later and it was fine, she signed the form the NR nurse gave me, i emailed it in and everything was OK.

I know others who had a high BP at their medical, their GP prescribed them meds for a few weeks then redid the BP and again all was OK.
 

Rockhopper

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From my own experience - it could take years to find the right combination of meds that works for you. Each time they change it you’ll have to wait for a couple of months then have blood tests to make sure your kidneys are tolerating the tablets okay.
Or you might get lucky and what they prescribe works first time!
 

TheAnswer89

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It depends on your overall fitness I would say. If you are fit, but you BP is quite high it might be just stress of medical, but if you are overweight or obese and your BP is very high (180/120 is very high) they might assess you as high risk and therefore not offer you contract. :/
 
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It depends on your overall fitness I would say. If you are fit, but you BP is quite high it might be just stress of medical, but if you are overweight or obese and your BP is very high (180/120 is very high) they might assess you as high risk and therefore not offer you contract. :/
Definitely agree with this.

My BP was high at a recent medical and the nurse put it down to white coat syndrome given my fitness, good bmi and history. I didn’t even get referred to my gp.
More importantly, you need to get your bp checked out to ensure you’re not at risk for personal reasons, never mind your job.
Hope it gets sorted!
 

Rockhopper

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Something else I've discovered is that whilst most GP's accept that white coat syndrome is a thing some of them consider that high BP is high BP no matter what causes it and will still treat it with meds.
 

scotraildriver

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Ive had BP issues at the medical severl times now but it must have been noted in my records because the last time the nurse took it at the start, didnt say anything and did the rest of the medical. Told me I was fine and had passed, but then took another BP reading "just for luck." Turns out the first one was terrible, but doing everything else and telling me i'd passed clearly calmed me down, as the second one was actually slightly low. 115/71. The first one was something silly.
 

1ab

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Thank you guys for all the words and advice, got a phone appointment with the doc in morning so we shall see. On a side got my self a BP machine and I am averaging 152/100. Would this have been good enough to pass my medical or is this still too high? Don't think the stress is helping either!
 

Rockhopper

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I’d say that’s still too high for a home reading. 120/80 is what they are looking for.
 

Mattydo

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Thank you guys for all the words and advice, got a phone appointment with the doc in morning so we shall see. On a side got my self a BP machine and I am averaging 152/100. Would this have been good enough to pass my medical or is this still too high? Don't think the stress is helping either!
I think this is below the TOC cut off but as as has been said if that’s what you’re getting relaxed at home I’d be definitely talking to my doctor about managing that down with diet/exercise/meds. It could also just be some stress in your life right now that could be helped with. Good luck, it’s pretty easy to manage usually.

At my pilot class 1 medical it needed to be under 135/85 in the clinic and around 120/80 for home readings. But it is cumulative. High BP alone isn’t necessarily a risk (although should be attended to) but if you also have high cholesterol or are overweight the risk factors start adding up.
 

simonw

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Thank you guys for all the words and advice, got a phone appointment with the doc in morning so we shall see. On a side got my self a BP machine and I am averaging 152/100. Would this have been good enough to pass my medical or is this still too high? Don't think the stress is helping either!
Google blood pressure charts. 140 is seen as the start of high blood pressure. Medicines will most likely work - well they have for me; and mine was off the scale. Best to write down your daily readings so you can discuss with the GP.
 

Paul powell

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I cant help from a career viewpoint, i dont work on the railway, but i do work in healthcare, so can give some advice if you dont mind.
When you take a BP reading, ignore the first one and repeat a couple of times at 5 minute intervals. When you get used to it, you will feel less anxious about it and get a more accurate, hopefully lower reading.
Averaging 152/100 is too high and your future health would benefit from getting it down. 120/80 is a good goal, though 110/75 is even better. You probably know this already, so apologies if im stating the obvious, but If you can, cut out alcohol, caffeine and salt. If you smoke try and stop.
Long term high blood pressure is directly linked to heart attack and stroke. Two good reasons to try and get it down. Generally there are no symptoms, hence why its often referred to as a silent killer. Finding out now if you have high BP is a bit of good luck, you can now get it treated before any harm is done. Medication such as ramipril ( called ACE inhibitors) or amlodipine ( calcium channel blockers) will reduce your levels, but it might take time to find the right dose and can have side effects, though side effects are usually minor and wear off after time. If you go on meds you will need liver function blood test to make sure there is no damage caused by the meds, a rare side effect. There is some evidence that a plant based, wholefood diet can reduce blood pressure and cholesterol.
It might be worth getting your cholesterol checked as well, just to be safe. Ask your GP for a lipid profile ( cholesterol) blood test.
 

Muse29

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Just got in from a medical. Doctor wants more info from my GP due to my blood pressure. It was 176/105 then 166/100 in the medical... Got home and measured it... 141/89 :s

So yeah, stupid white coat syndrome!

That said, I showed the doctor a chart of my home BP readings as they were generally around the 135-145/87-95 and she said I should be looking at getting a 24 monitor fitted in any case.
 

Snow1964

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Just got in from a medical. Doctor wants more info from my GP due to my blood pressure. It was 176/105 then 166/100 in the medical... Got home and measured it... 141/89 :s

So yeah, stupid white coat syndrome!

That said, I showed the doctor a chart of my home BP readings as they were generally around the 135-145/87-95 and she said I should be looking at getting a 24 monitor fitted in any case.

That is still rather high.

But actually having a medical is good in sense they often find something that can be treatable, but you probably don’t know you have.

I was picked up as having higher than desirable blood pressure (GP opted for 5mg of Amlopodine, a daily tablet to reduce it). But the blood test also indicated high ferritin (iron). So was advised to give readings to GP who rapidly had extra blood tests done in case I had hemachromatosis (iron overload). I didn’t but they did accidentally discover fatty liver during the ultrasound (apparently 30% of men over 50 have it, and can ultimately lead to liver failure, but it is rarely checked for as routine).

So now I simply avoid alcohol, stopped fortified breakfast cereals (40 years of Weetabix with added iron, is clearly bad), lost a stone in weight, and both blood pressure and Iron now ok.

If I hadn’t had the medical, would never have seen GP as no symptoms, and would probably have been few years nearer death, would likely have had liver problems in later life. So treat the medical as a health check, to spot the symptomless problems, and not something to panic about as that will just raise your blood pressure.
 
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Tyke41

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That is still rather high.

But actually having a medical is good in sense they often find something that can be treatable, but you probably don’t know you have.

I was picked up as having higher than desirable blood pressure (GP opted for 5mg of Amlopodine, a daily tablet to reduce it). But the blood test also indicated high ferritin (iron). So was advised to give readings to GP who rapidly had extra blood tests done in case I had hemachromatosis (iron overload). I didn’t but they did accidentally discover fatty liver during the ultrasound (apparently 30% of men over 50 have it, and can ultimately lead to liver failure, but it is rarely checked for as routine).

So now I simply avoid alcohol, stopped fortified breakfast cereals (40 years of Weetabix with added iron, is clearly bad), lost a stone in weight, and both blood pressure and Iron now ok.

If I hadn’t had the medical, would never have seen GP as no symptoms, and would probably have been few years nearer death, would likely have had liver problems in later life. So treat the medical as a health check, to spot the symptomless problems, and not something to panic about as that will just raise your blood pressure.

I have also had high blood pressure for a while, I was amazed that having avoided alcohol for two weeks and losing a stone in weight, also cut out red meat fully and within two weeks it returned to a respectable level... 128/24.... previous readings were around 145/95 sometimes 145/100.. Heading towards a medical has certainly woken me up re lifestyle choices!
At 50 I've heeded your posts advice in treating the medical as a health check!!
 
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