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Had an unnecessarily anxious day and feeling it could easily have been avoided

(13 Posts)
PleaseTieMyBow Thu 20-Apr-17 18:57:39

Went to GP yesterday with what I knew was a urine infection. She confirmed it and prescribed antibiotics. All simple.
Then she said could she check my BP as they hadn't done so for 5 years. Well it registered a lot higher than it ever has. A systolic reading of nearly 40 more than ever. It has never been as high as this, even when I smoked (gave up 12 years ago) and am now fitter than ever, run and swim, eat well, am a normal weight, don't have undue stress. I was surprised and said so. She said oh this happens sometimes if you rushed here and there's white coat syndrome. I hadn't rushed there and wasn't feeling in the least bit anxious. She said oh just come back next week and use the machine in the waiting room or you could buy a machine to keep an eye on it. Don't worry.
Anyway I mentioned to a friend and she said oh I've got a machine, you can check it. By this point I was anxious yet my BP was 35 points lower than yesterday.
Surely such an apparently odd reading should have been rechecked at the surgery after a few minutes? I'm actually pretty pissed off with the doctor for not double checking but then being quite blasé about it. She said what BP they aim for but even that would've been pretty high for me. Not sure what I'm posting for but just wanted to rant a bit. No point in moaning to the surgery I shouldn't think, is there?

MichaelSheensNextDW Thu 20-Apr-17 19:29:39

A single BP reading means very little indeed and you weren't presenting with symptoms suggesting hypertension needing urgent correction. There isn't anything amiss with her approach and advice.

Ecureuil Thu 20-Apr-17 19:31:47

She told you not to worry and suggested you retest in a week... I don't think she did anything wrong personally.

thatorchidmoment Thu 20-Apr-17 19:39:44

I'm sorry this episode gave you an anxious day.

It's definitely worth returning to the surgery as your GP suggests for another BP check, and the nurses will happily do that for you. You wouldn't have hypertension diagnosed on the basis of a single reading such as you describe, or even a couple of readings done within minutes of each other. If you don't usually visit the GP and are feeling unwell, you will almost certainly have been in a state of heightened awareness/anxiety, which manifests itself in raised blood pressure. That's completely normal and what you want is measurements done when you are relaxed.

I think your GP was trying to reassure you that you don't necessarily have high blood pressure, but she would like to monitor it in case you do. You probably know that it's a risk factor for lots of things so important to look out for. She won't want to dismiss it, but doesn't want you to get worked up at this point.

Hope you manage to return for re-measurement, and that it's lower next time!

CPtart Thu 20-Apr-17 19:44:39

I'm a practice nurse. Sitting there insisting people relax and keep pressing the button is not massively accurate. We loan machines/get people to buy or borrow and record their BP at home several times over different days and times and drop the readings back in.
You are also harbouring infection.
No point in moaning to the surgery. No point in moaning at all tbh. Primary care is soul destroying enough as it is at the minute.

Musicaltheatremum Thu 20-Apr-17 19:47:55

CPtart as a GP I feel your pain. Can't do right for doing wrong. You're BP is a bit high today but you were unwell so quite reasonable to repeat it on a few more occasions. Yes you can do it on the same day but need to wait 5 minutes or so and maybe GP was busy. They weren't worried and suggested you came back. Perfectly reasonable treatment.

CPtart Thu 20-Apr-17 19:58:49

If this is the kind of thing you get "pretty pissed off" at OP, no wonder your BP was elevated. Spending a day in my clinic seeing really poorly people would put things into perspective.

PleaseTieMyBow Thu 20-Apr-17 20:17:21

Thanks everyone for telling me to get a grip blush
I think I was worried (afterwards, not before the reading) and am a bit of a health worrier at the moment - menopausal symptoms, increased migraines, a frozen shoulder, a UTI. And now high blood pressure grin. I was just here thinking I'm working hard at keeping myself healthy and yet another thing has gone wrong.
I do know how busy and time-short GPs are, I really do. But I still worry. Anyway thanks for taking the time to reply

MajorClanger123 Thu 20-Apr-17 20:38:46

I can relate your anxiety to be honest - I recently had a breast clinic appointment at an excellent NHS one stop clinic where I was lucky enough to skip out relieved, but then my mind slowly crept into overdrive, the final comment had felt a little blasé to me, how can they know the lump is 'probably' just a milk duct. I got myself in a complete state over a few weeks until good old mumsnet calmed me right back down and made me realise I was being ridiculously anxious.

I do understand your anxiety, particularly when you're menopausal with a mix of symptoms / changes. I love the NHS, it's an amazing service. I think google doesn't help in some situations though, we're all trying to diagnose ourselves which must drive GPs mad sometimes!

I think you should take comfort in the fact that your BP was 35 points lower the following day whilst you were actually feeling anxious. Perhaps borrow your friends machine again a few times to keep track, will hopefully give you additional reassurance.

EffieIsATrinket Thu 20-Apr-17 22:19:02

Why didn't you sit in the waiting rom for 20 mins then recheck it yourself? GP appointments last 10 mins so repeated measurements of anything is difficult - the obvious exception being something which necessitates hospital admission vs not.

Sunshineandlaughter Fri 21-Apr-17 23:21:39

The kidneys are a key organ in regulating blood pressure so it's very possible that your uti was impacting your kidneys and causing your bp to be raised. Now you've started antibiotics and it's being treated your bp has come back down again.

Sunshineandlaughter Fri 21-Apr-17 23:24:20

And infection raises it anyway - not many people seem to understand this

Sunshineandlaughter Fri 21-Apr-17 23:27:11

And menopause can cause migraines and make you more susceptible to Utis (and also make you more irritable and anxious!)

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