Hypotension Hypotension is a state in which the blood pressure is too low to circulate blood throughout the body. Unlike hypertension (high blood pressure), which often is idiopathic (of unknown cause), hypotension nearly always develops as a secondary condition. The most common cause is taking too much of ANTIHYPERTENSIVE MEDICATIONS being used to treat hypertension. Hypotension also is a common side effect of numerous medications, especially ANTIDEPRESSANT MEDICATIONS, narcotic pain relievers, and medications taken for conditions such as parkinson’s disease. Hypotension is common following stroke and heart attack, and with injuries that result in significant blood loss. Often the hypotension resolves as the body recovers, though a stroke can result in long-term damage to parts of the brain responsible for regulating blood pressure. Orthostatic hypotension, sometimes called postural hypotension, occurs when there is a sudden drop in blood pressure when changing position, usually from lying down to standing. Orthostatic hypotension is a side effect of medications as well as a symptom of health conditions such as arrhythmias, heart failure, and other heart disease in which the heart’s ability to pump blood is compromised. Treatment for hypotension targets the underlying cause.
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