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trmcgeehan 11-28-02 06:11 AM

Giving blood lowers BP
My last visit to the blood bank scared the hell out of me! They tested my blood, and then said they couldn't accept it, and I have O negative, which is very much in demand. Then they gave me the telephone number of a doctor to call. Before calling the doctor, my mind raced over all the indiscretions I exhibited while I was single in sinful Southern California. I finally got up the courage to call, and the doc said the test was simply a false positive, and not to worry about it. I have given blood since then with no problems. One of the many benefits of giving blood is it lowers your blood pressure temporarily. This is a good thing for me, since I am right at 140/80, which my doc says is getting into the high range. I have thought about taking a blood pressure pill, but have read from several sources that this negatively impacts one's libido. Anybody heard this?

roadbuzz 11-28-02 09:13 AM

My uncle avoided taking his BP medicine because it made him feel lousy. I'd consider it only as a last resort, and definitely not if your BP is only borderline high. Meanwhile, weight control, diet, exercise, and stress management are better treatment, IMO.

RiPHRaPH 11-28-02 01:37 PM

this is a personal decison for you to make. blood pressure measures both the pressure that your blood is pumped out of the heart during the heart pump/stroke (systolic, or upper number) and the pressure of the blood as it returns to your heart (diastolic, or the pressure while your heart is in between beats...or at rest)

over time, your plumbing, which includes your valves and veins and arteries wear down due to the stress, or pressure over time. remember...your body never forgets...ever. when pressure is high, the vital organs get gyped out of blood and oxygen carrying capabilities. the organs that rely on blood perfusion the most are the kidneys, eyes, brain and skin. over time the increased pressure takes its toll on organ systems.

when the bottom number is elevated above 90, there is usually an indication that the pressure is too extreme for the blood returning to the heart and the heart's valves wear out quicker. usually this requires a water pill as your ankles and wrists tend to swell.

there is more but i won't bore you with all this.

anytime you redistribute the force with which the blood is pumped, you will have some dizziness, fatigue and yes....possibly some erectile dysfunction. effects are varied.

psycholist 11-30-02 08:49 PM

hi there fellow O-neg! I know only too well what you are talking about when you get that kind of call from the Red Cross! I had a similar panic when they contacted me shortly after a donation back in like, 90. They informed me that a screening of my blood indicated that I had hepatitis B(or 'C',I don't recall which) and immediately I began regretting my college years.:)

I went to my GP straight away for a complete blood panel and lo and behold I discovered that certain common kidney/liver infections can screw up your enzymes enough to cause a faulty hep test. Unfortunately I never was able to get the whole thing cleared on my history sheet with the Red Cross and to this day giving blood is an ordeal because the flags still pop up next to my name.

I also have a high blood-pressure problem but it's more of a come and go thing: it's known as "white-coat syndrome" and it is simply what happenes to your BP reading when you know you have to go see the Dr. Your BP basically shoots way up ;in my case I have even seen close to stoke levels--I have really scared the living crap out of some nurses, but it always drops to normal after about 10 minutes. My GP wants to put me on meds but I have been dragging my feet...I can't stand the thought of being medicated for something like this until I'm at LEAST 40, plus the fact that I really don't know if it's that necessary.

MKRG 11-30-02 09:11 PM

Blood pressure changes constantly. I too have freaked a few doctors out with my blood pressure back when I was having panic attacks. Had I listened to one doc I would have been on a slew of meds (ie. Blood pressure, anti-depressants, tranquilizers) Instead I upped my cycling and made a routine out of it and everything fell into place. Anyway the point is that BP as I understand it, only needs to be treated when it is sustained over 140/90 for a period of time. I also have the "white coat" problem and for this reason take readings at home and track them right next to my cycling numbers so that next time a Dr tries to medicate me on one or two readings I can provide them with a more accurate profile of my blood pressure.

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