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Dec 17, 2017 · Exercise-induced Hypertension in Heart & Blood Health

Hello,

I am a 55 yo male and long-time athlete, who recently developed very minor chest discomfort at rest. EKG’s always having been normal, my PCP decided to order a Cardiac Stress Echo, which I had four days ago. During the second phase of the test at a heart rate of about 140, my systolic BP jumped to 230 and the techs aborted the test.

Needless to say the possibility that exercising with a HR of barely 140 bringing on a systolic BP spike high enough to cause a stroke is completely devastating to a life-long athlete. I was a runner since high school, avid tennis and basketball player, and most recently road cyclist doing century (100-mile) rides regularly.

Has anyone dealt with this issue? I have taken BP meds since I was 30 (have metabolic syndrome and family history of HBP) but my BP has always been well-controlled at a resting state (typical 140/90–current meds: Benicar 40 MG 1/day and Clonodine .1 MG 2/day) I will say that I have gained 25 lbs in the last two years and work a very stressful job resulting in my PCP increasing BP meds dose recently.

I have read that maybe some BP meds are better than others for this exercise-induced spiking of BP? I have also read that there are people with NORMAL BP that have this issue. Very confusing…

Has anyone found any cardiac arterial blockage issues that might cause this (I am going to demand a cardiac CTA when I see the cardiologist next week)?

The thought of never being able to exercise hard again is completely depressing—would appreciate any information anyone might have. Thanks so much.