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HYPOTENSION OR LOW BLOOD PRESSURE

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Causes and Symptoms: If the blood being pumped by the heart into the arteries fails to maintain the normal pressure a condition known as hypo tension or low blood pressure is supposed to arise. Its cardinal symptoms are: weakness, nausea and sometimes, if the pressure falls very low, coma. Tachycardia (palpitation) is also one of the symptoms by which hypo tension can be recognized. Low blood pressure may be caused by hemorrhage due to injury or bursting of an ulcer of the stomach or nose bleed, if too severe. Food poisoning and anemia may also lead to low blood pressure.

Treatment: The first requirement in dealing with cases of low blood pressure is to ascertain its primary cause: if the pressure falls suddenly, the cause usually is severe hemorrhage, as in an injury. In such cases, the best thing is to remove the patient to the hospital and give him a blood transfusion. If it is caused by anemia it can be cured only when anemia has been sufficiently dealt with. For persistent cases of low blood pressure the regimen described in the section on anemia should be undertaken.



Brandy of Alcohol of any variety in quantities from 15 to 50 ml. diluted with warm water, is a temporary expedient which can be tried till the exact cause of the malady is ascertained. Or, spirit of Ammonia Aromat should be given in teaspoonful doses diluted with and equal amount of water.

Regimen: A patient suffering from low blood pressure should be given a balanced nutritious diet, full of proteins and carbohydrates. Dry fruits, cheese, flesh of chicken, pigeon, rabbit and goat-in that order-soups of meat and black gram (if he is a vegetarian), fruits like mango, banana, apple, grapes and leguminous vegetables like beans of all varieties should be the mainstay of such a patient. He should avoid vigorous exercise and excessive sex. Intoxicants like alcohol and tobacco may be permitted in medium quantities.

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