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Has anyone experienced this? My father is age 89 in a week. His blood pressure with medication is usually very controlled, but this past Tuesday it got very high. Systolic was 190, I don't remember the diastolic. Heart rate kept jumping around. We went to ER in the first hour the symptoms started presenting. It is two days later. With added medication his blood pressure is still high and he is still feeling dizziness. They wanted to send him home after finding no signs of heart attack or stroke or neurological damage other than unrelated neuropathy, but we asked for an MRI to check his ears and the veins in his neck and to make sure there aren't any bleeds. He isn't nauseated. Neurologist asked him to stand with his feet together and close his eyes, and he was unsteady on his feet when he did that.

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I agree. It could be coincidence. The day I took him to ER, he had been taking his blood pressure repeatedly because he was so worried about how he was feeling and he would not even wait ten minutes between so there was a fair amount of anxiety for sure. So far today he says he's feeling fine. Catching up on the sleep he missed in the hospital and he wants to go out to his favorite restaurant tomorrow. For now it is wait and see. Who likes that? But there is no way to tell. Maybe things will be okay for now.
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I can see how that would be emotionally difficult to deal with. The timing could be coincidental or maybe not.
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Last year, this time of year, my mother passed away. Today was their 67th wedding anniversary and both of their birthdays are next week. Anxiety isn't something I'd rule out. Last year he was grieving so deeply he had an accident in the home and fractured a rib. As for this hospital visit, all tests came back just fine and they wanted him to come home tonight. We'll get together with his cardiologist and his primary hopefully next week and the neurologist wants to follow up. Electrolytes were all good, kidney all good, and he was on Internal Medicine. This visit, the staff seemed pretty disorganized as far as ordering tests and consultations. My father didn't want to deal with the cardiologist at the hospital, he said no. He wants to go to his regular one who has all the test set up in his office building. Can't fight free will but I would have felt better to do it sooner rather than later.
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That's a good idea. I just recalled that my dad had dizzy spells too, (and seizures) though he didn't have high blood pressure, just slightly high. He went through all kinds of test. He was in his mid 70's. As it turned out, he had conversion disorder. It was his anxiety turning into physical symptoms. Once he knew what it was and how he could talk himself into calmness, AND take his medication, it went away. I'm not saying that's it, but I would consider it being anxiety. Often, they rule out everything else first.
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Gwen, one more question. What service is he on? When my mom got taken via ambulance tovthe hospital with np of 220/110, they admitted her to the neurology service. When it became clear she hadn't have a stroke, the staff became very disintested and seemed to me that the hadn't a clue about how to figure out what was wrong. They knew her sodium was out of balance, but half the docs told her to drink more water, the other half told her less water and no salt. We finaly got her transferred to the internal medicine floor where the care was more consistent. Ultimately though, after this and two more hospitalizations in v quick sucession, nothing metabolic was ever turned up. But they did start treating mom's anxiety, which did seem to be part of the bp spikes.
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Is there something they aren't telling you? Do they just have a communication issue? Is your dad otherwise healthy for an 89 year old? You say above that he already has a cardiologist. Have that asked about what procedures he is willing to have depending on the test results? I've never heard of it taking that long for tests.
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This is day #3 and we are still waiting on an MRI The cardiologist will see him after that or we will try to bump up his upcoming appointment with his regular one where he is due for and echo soon anyway.
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gwenfull, hopefully while in the hospital your Dad did get seen by the on-staff cardiologist.... what did he/she say about your Dad's condition? Hopefully the cardiologist you will be seeing will put your Dad through a battery of tests, such as a heart echo [easy test using a sonogram]. Also checking to see if the blood pressure goes high or low when standing up, which would make anyone feel lightheaded.
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You know, my mom was the same way. But as you get older, sometimes, conditions are "over determined", meaning that they are caused by multiple systems. Get him to a good geriatrician when he's released.
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I think taking him to the hospital was brilliant. Look, as folks gets older, systems stop working. I've found that the one really important thing is to have a doctor who understands geriatrics. I wish I had back the three years of rushing mom to ERs, taking her to specialists; if we'd found the Geriatrics doc FiRST.
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Thank you to all who have answered. He wants to find a cause (ideally something that can be solved) instead of just treat the symptoms. The doctor is working with him on that so we are hopeful.
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Electrolytes. That is a good thought. My first instinct was to give him pedialyte but of course I took him to the hospital instead. I asi d the nurse about it but she wasn't too receptive. The doctor will address questions so I will ask him about that and kidney function. We will be seeing cardiologist. For some reason this hospital has been forgetting to schedule some of the things they should until we remind them at least once. And no he isn't diabetic. He has terrible arthritis in the right foot and has lost some some sensation over time.
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"unrelated neuropathy" - is he diabetic?

I also was going to suggest a cardiac workup, including checking the carotid arteries.

There's also the possibility of vertigo.
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Also, how much of a cardiac workup did they do? You certainly want his pop to followup and perhaps a referral to a cardiologist might be in order.

My mom had vague symptoms like this. There were a laundry list of things going on, electrolyte imbalance, anxiety, ortho static hypotension, eventually congestive heart failure.
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Blood test came back with normal electrolytes, and showing that there is normal kidney function?
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It sounds like things are progressing as they should. I'm glad they didn't just send him home from ER, when it became obvious that ER could not provide a solution.

I hope someone will come along who has had a similar experience. I don't know where you are, but it is the middle of the night for most participants here.
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So much to tell, I'd left out that they admitted him from the ER and there isn't improvement yet, two days later.
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Jeanne, thanks for your reply. He is still in the hospital because he needs the MRI and his blood pressure under control, so we aren't at that stage yet. I posted in case there is someone who has seen this happen and would know something specific to check for. I'm hoping it is just something that can be controlled safely enough with medicine. He's been really focusing on improving his wellness lately, slowly. When he's better again, we're going to physical therapy at the nursing home for safe little workouts to see if he can improve mobility. He likes that kind of thing.
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Bummer! Don't you hate these mystery maladies?

Have you been to his PCP since the ER event? Do you have an appointment? The ER did their job in determining there was nothing apparent that needed immediate fixing. Now get Dad into the longer-term medical system for deeper analysis.
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