Well, guess what. That wonder drug that the new doc put me on 3 days ago is RAISING MY BLOOD PRESSURE. I just read tonight that prednisone can also raise blood pressure…..just like every single NSAID on the face of the earth. And I am full of inflammation, just busting full of it.
So I am faced with two choices. Take the medicine, relieve the pain, and take a chance of having a stroke or heart attack or thrombosis (which is extremely likely since I’ve had high blood pressure since my 20’s)……OR……..take nothing for the inflammation, have a greater chance of survival, and live with varying degrees of extreme pain every day for the rest of my life. And have to severely limit my activity to protect my feet from further damage.
I’ve been told by a friend of mine that I should just forget about the blood pressure and treat the pain. No one should live in this much pain, she says…. and just screw the consequences. Better to have a quality of life than long life in misery.
I agree with that in theory. Of course. Very easy to say when you are not the one feeling the tightness of your chest constrict when your BP starts shooting through the roof a few hours after you take an anti-inflammatory drug. When your chest gets so tight you have a hard time drawing in breath. When your head feels like it’s so full it’s going to bust wide open. When your eyes feel like they are going to pop right out of your face. Whoever said you can’t “feel” high blood pressure symptoms are WRONG. I can feel it, I’m an expert, I’ve had it for 30+ years.
So yeah, in a fairy tale, I would just take the drugs I need to control the inflammation and pain, and just cast my fate to the wind and if I die, oh well…..at least I would have had less pain for the shortened time here on earth. That just sounds so lovely, like a story book.
Unfortunately, the anxiety I feel when my blood pressure goes into a shooting spike, and when the numbers won’t even register on the blood pressure machine and it spits out an “ERROR” message…..that anxiety right there is equal to the extreme pain I feel in my body.
So what am I supposed to do? I have several illnesses that cause high inflammation in my body, including the tendency (inherited) for high blood pressure as well. I currently take 4 blood pressure medicines and still my pressure goes up and down like a teeter totter. My father died 26 years ago TODAY after suffering a major stroke during carotid artery surgery. He lived in a vegetative state for a year before he died on October 11, 1987. So I always have that hanging over my head.
I’m sorry but all the lovely platitudes about just taking my chances with high blood pressure, ignoring the numbers, and taking the pain relieving drugs sounds like a great idea…..if you are not the one living in my body. To someone else, the decision might be crystal clear. It’s just not that simple.
I am angry that I have been cursed with illnesses that cause high blood pressure, and the very medicines that could relieve alot of my suffering I cannot (or should not) take because they exacerbate my high blood pressure and could cause a cardiovascular event. My anger does not help matters. Neither does the extreme pain. Both of those can also raise blood pressure. So…..there you have it. The big conundrum. And I have been bouncing around back and forth for years, trying to decide which is the worst of two evils. Now that I am getting older, getting to “that age”…..the age my dad was when he died…..I just turned 58 on September 22. And it freaks me out.
I guess I just need to come to terms with the fact that nobody lives forever. I can’t predict my own demise whether or not I take certain drugs. My time will be up when it’s up. I will pass away when my time is over. I just don’t want to hasten things by consuming drugs that drastically increase my odds of dying sooner rather than later.
So……that’s about it. It’s a very difficult situation. That’s about all I can say.