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justthisbloke

I Told The Dr To Stuff His Pills - Have Survived (So Far)

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A while ago the quack sat me down and told me to take a brace of beta blockers every day for high BP. He offered no hope of ever getting off them; apparently it's for life. This miffed me as I hate the idea of being pill dependent but I dutifully quaffed them every morning.

Until two months ago. The worm turned. Well, I ran out and never got round to getting any more. To date I have not died. OTOH, I have no idea what my BP is.

Instead of pills I've cut out salt (almost entirely), cut down on fags (may quit totally soon), eat veggy 95% of the time (been doing this anyway), don't drink much (haven't for years), and am riding my bike to work again.

Mrs JTB is furious. But I've proved immortal so far.

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I imagine Mrs. JTB is just frightened of losing you.

What you're doing as an alternative to the medication seems reasonable in itself, but perhaps you should discuss your desire not to take medicine indefinitely with your GP rather than just doing it in a somewhat head-in-the-sand, well-I-just-ran-out-of-pills kind of way?

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I recently stopped one of my three BP medications. It worked by relaxing the walls of the veins.

It used to make me feel awful around eleven am every morning and I always felt tired and weak. My left side (affected by the stroke) was much weaker than before I started in this med 2.5 years ago.

Result? I'm feeling much stronger on my left side and can do much more. I don't feel like death warmed up every morning and best of all my blood pressure has gone DOWN. So much for doctors.

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A while ago the quack sat me down and told me to take a brace of beta blockers every day for high BP. He offered no hope of ever getting off them; apparently it's for life. This miffed me as I hate the idea of being pill dependent but I dutifully quaffed them every morning.

Until two months ago. The worm turned. Well, I ran out and never got round to getting any more. To date I have not died. OTOH, I have no idea what my BP is.

Instead of pills I've cut out salt (almost entirely), cut down on fags (may quit totally soon), eat veggy 95% of the time (been doing this anyway), don't drink much (haven't for years), and am riding my bike to work again.

Mrs JTB is furious. But I've proved immortal so far.

Isn't it a preventative thing ?

So basically ahving HBP wrecks your arteries kidneys etc and is something that will build up over time. The question is are the side effects from the BB worse than this ?

If the solution is that if you want lower BP without using BB, surely is to adopt a low BP inducing lifestypel (sounds like you are doing apart from the fags), and then monitor what it does for your BP and see whether that helps.

Then disucss it with your doctor. And see what he thinks about the changes and how they are helping. At the very least you should be able to reduce the dose.

I would also say that your thread is a bit selective, in the respect that people who ignore the docs advice and end up dead aren't going to be on here shouting about it.

Edit : Did you actually discuss with your doctor adopting a more healthly lifestyle rather than taking the pills and trying that for a month or so and work with them rather than against them ? He may have had some specific advice given your actual situation ?

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I imagine Mrs. JTB is just frightened of losing you.

She's had me for a quarter century and I'm well insured so she can hardly grumble.

What you're doing as an alternative to the medication seems reasonable in itself, but perhaps you should discuss your desire not to take medicine indefinitely with your GP rather than just doing it in a somewhat head-in-the-sand, well-I-just-ran-out-of-pills kind of way?

I saw the doc multiple times earlier in the year and he was most unhelpful. He really was adamant that the pills were the answer and high BP is age thing that eventually needs pills. And here are the pills; tuck in.

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She's had me for a quarter century and I'm well insured so she can hardly grumble.

I saw the doc multiple times earlier in the year and he was most unhelpful. He really was adamant that the pills were the answer and high BP is age thing that eventually needs pills. And here are the pills; tuck in.

See a different doctor.

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I recently stopped one of my three BP medications. It worked by relaxing the walls of the veins.

It used to make me feel awful around eleven am every morning and I always felt tired and weak. My left side (affected by the stroke) was much weaker than before I started in this med 2.5 years ago.

Result? I'm feeling much stronger on my left side and can do much more. I don't feel like death warmed up every morning and best of all my blood pressure has gone DOWN. So much for doctors.

The side effects were pretty unpleasant. Primarily they made me feel extremely cold. And tired. And, how shall I phrase this; unable to undertake marital duties with my usual panache.

I'm now back to normal body temperature and don't feel knackered all the time. The trouser department is better but not perfect.

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See a different doctor.

I would agree with this - to a degree ...

The solution isn't to keep seeing doctors until one tells you something that you want to hear though.

It may be that this doctor has some particular information that we don't know as to why this high BP may not respond to diet/exercise etc. That's the problem of trying to second guess medical decisions on an internet forum (as well many of the responses aren't qualified).

As another point I would add that medics do seem to be pretty unimpressed with people who refuse to pack in the fags. Smoking has a serious impact on health, so the reason is that if someone is refusing to give up the smokes to save their life they are unlikely statisctiaclly to have the willpower to make the other lifestyle changes, so pills become the obvious solution.

Maybe if you packed in the smokes full stop you might get a better response.

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There was a programme on t'wireless just today about conflicts of interest in medicine.

The quack may be over-eager to prescribe pills 'cos (s)he is ticking boxes, and gets paid for the box labelled "prescribed pills for JTB".

And (I'm speculating here) perhaps because if (s)he failed to prescribe the pills, there might be some nasty blame flying around if something bad happened to you, regardless of whether the pills would've made things better or worse, or neither.

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A while ago the quack sat me down and told me to take a brace of beta blockers every day for high BP. He offered no hope of ever getting off them; apparently it's for life. This miffed me as I hate the idea of being pill dependent but I dutifully quaffed them every morning.

Until two months ago. The worm turned. Well, I ran out and never got round to getting any more. To date I have not died. OTOH, I have no idea what my BP is.

Instead of pills I've cut out salt (almost entirely), cut down on fags (may quit totally soon), eat veggy 95% of the time (been doing this anyway), don't drink much (haven't for years), and am riding my bike to work again.

Mrs JTB is furious. But I've proved immortal so far.

My ex's dad started cutting his 'pills for life' in half whilst making some lifestyle changes along the lines you describe, then started taking the cut pills less frequently, then cut them out entirely. He monitored the downward progress of his blood pressure regularly and only mentioned what he was up to with the pills to his doctor months down the line. I've heard similar anectodals which suggest to me that at least sometimes people may be shoved on lifetime medication before all non pill-based options have been been exhausted

btw re. cutting out salt almost entirely...

NYT: No Benefit Seen in Sharp Limits on Salt in Diet

...more recently, researchers began looking at the actual consequences of various levels of salt consumption, as found in rates of heart attacks, strokes and death, not just blood pressure readings. Some of what they found was troubling.
One 2008 study the committee examined, for example, randomly assigned 232 Italian patients with aggressively treated moderate to severe congestive heart failure to consume either 2,760 or 1,840 milligrams of sodium a day, but otherwise to consume the same diet. Those consuming the lower level of sodium had more than three times the number of hospital readmissions — 30 as compared with 9 in the higher-salt group — and more than twice as many deaths — 15 as compared with 6 in the higher-salt group.
Another study, published in 2011, followed 28,800 subjects with high blood pressure ages 55 and older for 4.7 years and analyzed their sodium consumption by urinalysis. The researchers reported that the risks of heart attacks, strokes, congestive heart failure and death from heart disease increased significantly for those consuming more than 7,000 milligrams of sodium a day and for those consuming fewer than 3,000 milligrams of sodium a day.
There are physiological consequences of consuming little sodium, said Dr. Michael H. Alderman, a dietary sodium expert at Albert Einstein College of Medicine who was not a member of the committee. As sodium levels plunge, triglyceride levels increase, insulin resistance increases, and the activity of the sympathetic nervous system increases. Each of these factors can increase the risk of heart disease.

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Yes the 'good' thing about your problem is that it's something you can monitor; so go and buy a blood pressure monitor and see how your lifestyle changes are affecting your blood pressure over time.

But keep the doc in the loop too; and if he's one of these docs who treats you like you're a moron and have to blindly take his pills without any consideration, then as someone else mentioned then you should get a new doc.

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Yes the 'good' thing about your problem is that it's something you can monitor; so go and buy a blood pressure monitor and see how your lifestyle changes are affecting your blood pressure over time.

Agreed. BP monitors are cheap and accurate, so it's definitely worth getting one. Make sure to measure at different times during the day too so as to get an idea of highs and lows.

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She's had me for a quarter century and I'm well insured so she can hardly grumble.

I saw the doc multiple times earlier in the year and he was most unhelpful. He really was adamant that the pills were the answer and high BP is age thing that eventually needs pills. And here are the pills; tuck in.

I too have had that experience! :unsure:

I had to get a medical certificate for going offshore, and I did, but the "company paid for doctor" said my blood pressure was a little high today, so I went to a regular GP who filled me full of pills! I did get a BPM, and it didn't look too high to me, and after a "not very scientific" experment of tryng them, and then not for a while, it didn't seem to make any bloody difference! So I stopped them. I hope I don't end up like Rik Mayall! :blink:

And indeed, the pills messed up with my second favourite part! :wacko:

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My BP is high at the docs. I don't do waiting rooms very well.
A 24 hour monitor showed them it's actually fine.

They worry about your BP a lot when you're on the contraceptive pill so I can't go to FPC anymore as they don't have access to the medical notes that say my BP is fine.

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My BP is high at the docs. I don't do waiting rooms very well.

A 24 hour monitor showed them it's actually fine.

They worry about your BP a lot when you're on the contraceptive pill so I can't go to FPC anymore as they don't have access to the medical notes that say my BP is fine.

Also an issue! :(

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Also an issue! :(

can you imagine the scene: You're there waiting in the FPC for your pill appointment which is on a 'as you get there basis' so it's normally 40 minutes wait. For the entire 40 minutes there's at least one new born wailing in that horrendous high pitch shriek they have because the FPC runs along side the baby clinic.

I didn't like listening to my baby cry and I don't like listening to anyone else's.

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can you imagine the scene: You're there waiting in the FPC for your pill appointment which is on a 'as you get there basis' so it's normally 40 minutes wait. For the entire 40 minutes there's at least one new born wailing in that horrendous high pitch shriek they have because the FPC runs along side the baby clinic.

I didn't like listening to my baby cry and I don't like listening to anyone else's.

Also I didn't like finding a parking space!

Some GP's really shouldn't deal with people! :blink:

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Also I didn't like finding a parking space!

Some GP's really shouldn't deal with people! :blink:

LOL I used to walk! It's a nice walk down the canal from here so very relaxing.

Luckily one of the nurses is qualified to prescribe stuff without the docs so you avoid seeing them.

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I've steered clear of prescribed medication for years now as, apart from antibiotics a few times, none of the pills I was prescribed helped.

A few years ago a family member had stevens-johnson syndrome which was caused by a reaction to a prescribed drug. They were in intensive care as it's a serious and life threatening condition. It was horrific. They looked like they had been severely burnt in a fire with weeping sores. Thankfully they recovered.

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I've steered clear of prescribed medication for years now as, apart from antibiotics a few times, none of the pills I was prescribed helped.

A few years ago a family member had stevens-johnson syndrome which was caused by a reaction to a prescribed drug. They were in intensive care as it's a serious and life threatening condition. It was horrific. They looked like they had been severely burnt in a fire with weeping sores. Thankfully they recovered.

Forgive me for my ignorance, but I've never heard of it! Is it caused by accountancy? :blink:

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Can only echo some of the other advice:

Consider replacing your doctor

Monitor your own blood pressure

Watch your salt/add plenty of vegetables

Talk to your (new) doctor about your concerns regarding medication

Blood pressure is silent disease. You won't feel the effects until later in life - may be a decade or two or three from now. Don't just ignore it by accident.

I once had a high blood pressure reading at the Docs. I think it was classic mix of recovering from an illness/anxiety about the quack. The next time it was just fine.

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I refuse to let my doc take my BP. I monitor it myself, it's always 20 to 60 points lower than a white coat measurement. I don't go to the doc for casual reasons, so I'm stressed when I do.

The docs have instructions from NICE, I believe, that everyone north of 140/90 should be on meds. This in spite of the fact the old yardstick was 100 + your age, and not much evidence to suggest the old way was wrong. It's treating a hundred patients, to benefit one or two.

http://spacedoc.com/does_treating_high_blood_pressure_do_any_good

Clever though they clearly are, in the early days of drug development almost no controlled trials were done to see if they actually did any good. There were a couple of short-term studies on people with very high, out of control, blood pressure. But when it came to people with mild/moderate raised blood pressure (which represents the vast majority of people with high blood pressure), there were no studies at all. Yes, you did read that right. There were no placebo-controlled studies. It was just accepted that if you lowered the blood pressure, you had to be doing good.

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