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Is it safe & possible to stop taking blood pressure medications?

By September 23, 2009 - 6:34pm
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(reply to Diane Porter)

Hi Diane,
Thank you again for all the helpful information & links. My physician increased the diuretic I am on but would like me to see a specialist again - a little discouraging - I'm not really the best patient in the world. I keep hoping for an easy answer that is not pharmaceutical. I will try to be a more patient patient.

October 6, 2009 - 6:48pm
(reply to Cathiet)

Hi, Cathiet,

I'm GLAD your doctor wants you to see a specialist again. I think this rocks. I know that as a patient, it's frustrating and discouraging, but I think that only by continuing to press on will you ultimately get some answers and some help. How soon can you have an appointment with the specialist? I hope you don't have to wait forever, sometimes it can be hard to get in.

October 7, 2009 - 9:14am

Thank you Diane & Michelle for your encouraging words. Yes high blood pressure does seem to be a family problem. I do see the doctor regularly & am seeing her again on Monday to discuss my blood pressure & the results of blood work, ecg. & pulmonary function tests etc. that she recently requisitioned.

My stress is primarily work related & seems to be beyond my control right now - I suspect many people are in the same boat these days!

I am currently on Ramipril, ASA, & Hydrochlorathalmazide for my blood pressure as well as vitamin B12 for a deficiency. (Despite my efforts to eat spinach, kale & brocolli every day)!

Mostly I find my stomach hurts all the time since starting the blood pressure medicine & I seem to be increasingly tired, although everyone keeps telling me that my increased physical activity will give me more energy. And since I still don't seem to be able to keep my blood pressure under control I have to wonder what is the point in continuing to take it.

Thank you again for your encouragment though.

September 28, 2009 - 6:52pm


Let me join Michelle in applauding your fabulous diet, and the fact that you have lost two sizes!!! That's not an easy lifestyle change to make, and you have made it!

I have two more questions for you.

How long has it been since you were able to see your doctor?

And, do you know where the primary source(s) of your stress lie? You are doing great things to try to combat it so far, but I'm wondering if it is work-related, home-related, etc.

OK, I actually have three questions. What blood pressure medication are you on now?

September 28, 2009 - 10:20am
Expert HERWriter

Hello Cathiet and welcome to EmpowHer!

I am also very sorry to hear that you are having trouble with your blood pressure and the side effects from the medication you are taking. When I read your post I had the same reaction as Diane P--that this is definitely something you'll want to work with your physician on. It's never a good idea to just cut back or eliminate medications on your own. When will your family doctor return from leave? Is there possibly another physician you can see on a regular basis instead?

Your diet sounds amazing--way to go! And that's so great that you have gone down two sizes in your clothing! I think you are experiencing what so many people are right now in terms of stress. You definitely sound like you are doing everything right. But I believe that although stressful situations and on-going stress can raise blood pressure, there are often other factors that can lead to an increase in readings. For example, from what I have read blood pressure can be hereditary. For example, I have a good friend whose Mom has gone though a lot of stressful stuff in the last few years and her blood pressure is always on the low side. But her Dad has struggled with it for over 40 years and eats well, exercises, is super thin, etc.

I'm not a physician, but my gut feeling is that you just might not be on the correct medication. I know there are several types of blood pressure medicine out there and what you take might just not be agreeing with you. But please don't take yourself off of it--please do as Diane suggested and find a physician who will work with you and help you find the correct prescription in the right amount for you. Please write again when you can to let us know how you are doing! Best in health, Michelle

September 27, 2009 - 10:50pm

no I haven't seen any improvement in my blood pressure & yes I am struggling with side effects. If anything my blood pressure is worse than it was before I started medications

September 24, 2009 - 6:34pm
(reply to Cathiet)


That's hard to hear. I'm so sorry. Do you feel that you have a doctor who listens to you and is working with you on an ongoing basis? Has she or he tried different medications to see if one worked better than another? There are many medications for blood pressure, and you may not have found the right one for you, especially in terms of the side effects.

I am surprised that with your blood pressure not improving and even declining, your doctor has not recommended a change. Are you also doing other things to try to improve your health? Are you overweight, or do you smoke? Are you diabetic? Are you also dealing with other medical conditions? Are you able to exercise?

We have a great page on high blood pressure, which also includes links to more information at the bottom:


I really want you to be in the medical care of someone who is helping you work actively to solve this problem. Can you write back with the answers to my questions? Maybe I can find you some more information that will help.

September 25, 2009 - 8:58am
(reply to Diane Porter)

Hi, thanks for your response. My family doctor is on leave currently so I haven't really had a consistent practitioner to speak with about this. I am somewhat overweight, but I have been working on losing weight & eating well for some time & have gone down two sizes in my clothes. I eat predominantly fresh, organic foods prepared at home with an emphasis on vegetables & fruit with whole grain brown rice, beans etc.

I am struggling with stress & do not seem to be able to cope as well as I used to, I'm more tired & don't really know what is wrong. I exercise, meditate and try to do everything that is recommended for dealing with stress, but keep feeling overwhelmed.

I really appreciate being able to write to you. Thank you for any suggestions you may have.

September 27, 2009 - 7:49pm


Have you been working with your doctor to lower your blood pressure, and have you seen improvements?

Or are you having side effects that you would like to live without?

Whatever you do, you musn't suddenly stop taking any prescription drug without talking to your doctor first. With some drugs, it's important to wean off them slowly and watch for side effects as you go.

September 24, 2009 - 5:31pm

Anything is possible in DUE TIME. I repeat, in DUE TIME. If you feel emotionally, psychologically, and physically capable of living without this anymore, then you really should see your doctor and tell him/her about what you feel. You might be ask to start lowering your dosage or the frequency of your medication or, you just might get off with an "as needed" type of medication.

September 23, 2009 - 8:11pm
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