Notsosmartgy
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Notsosmartgy, December 21,  2019  10:58am EST

Does living at higher altitude increase BP?

Does moving to a higher-elevation location increase BP?

 

I am 72 y.o.  I normally live on the east coast and I have (reasonably) well-controlled BP.  ("Reasonably": my BP is a bit labile; my doc wonders if it could be because my generic meds, made overseas, are not the highest quality.)

 

I spend winters in Salt Lake City, altitude ~ 5,000 ft, and I have an Omron BP unit.  My diet changes a bit, but not in a major way, and my sodium intake does not increase.  Nor am I under any additional stress.

 

For the past 3 years or so, when I've moved here, my BP during the first week or 2 is considerably higher than at home--typically perhaps 176/85 or so.  During that time, and at home, I am totally asymptomatic.  And over time my BP comes down to normal--though I have to increase my meds.

 

I did some research that found (speculated) that moving to higher altitude increased BP; a doc I saw pooh-poohed the idea.

 

Anyone have any guesses or concrete knowledge about this?

1 Reply
  • Myrna
    Myrna, January 7,  2020  6:45pm EST

    I have high blood pressure and asthma, I know high elevation affects my health , both I think , definitely the asthma. Maybe the body works harder at higher elevation, more shortness of breath and that increases the blood pressure, I'm just guessing. I have no real knowledge.

     

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