No special preparations are necessary to have your blood pressure checked. Don't stop taking medications you think might affect your blood pressure without your doctor's advice.
Here's some information to help you get ready for your appointment.
What you can do
Make a list of:
- Your symptoms, including any that seem unrelated to low blood pressure, and when they occur
- Key personal information, including a family history of low blood pressure and major stresses or recent life changes
- All medications, vitamins or other supplements you take, including doses
- Questions to ask your doctor
For low blood pressure, basic questions to ask your doctor include:
- What is likely causing my symptoms or condition?
- What are other possible causes for my symptoms or condition?
- What tests will I need?
- What's the most appropriate treatment?
- How often should I be screened for low blood pressure?
- I have other health conditions. How can I best manage them together?
- Are there restrictions I need to follow?
- Should I see a specialist?
- Are there brochures or other printed materials I can have? What websites do you recommend?
Don't hesitate to ask other questions.
What to expect from your doctor
Your doctor is likely to ask you questions, including:
- Have your symptoms been continuous or occasional?
- How severe are your symptoms?
- What, if anything, seems to improve your symptoms?
- What, if anything, appears to worsen your symptoms?
- Do you have a family history of heart disease?
April 22, 2017
- Hypotension. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/book/export/html/4880. Accessed Dec. 11, 2016.
- Low blood pressure. American Heart Association. http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/HighBloodPressure/AboutHighBloodPressure/Low-Blood-Pressure_UCM_301785_Article.jsp. Accessed Dec. 11, 2016.
- Kaufman H, et al. Mechanisms, causes and evaluation of orthostatic hypotension. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Dec. 11, 2016.
- Understanding blood pressure readings. American Heart Association. http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/Conditions/HighBloodPressure/AboutHighBloodPressure/Understanding-Blood-Pressure-Readings_UCM_301764_Article.jsp. Accessed Dec. 11, 2016.
- Kaplan NM, et al. Ambulatory and home blood pressure monitoring and white coat hypertension. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Dec. 13, 2016.
- Kaufman H, et al. Treatment of orthostatic and postprandial hypotension. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Dec. 11, 2016.
Low blood pressure (hypotension)