Orthostatic hypotension (or postural hypotension) is a rather long term that simply describes the sudden drop in blood pressure that some people get when they stand up after sitting or lying down. You may have experienced a bout of dizziness or a light head if this has ever happened to you. The condition alone is usually pretty mild and doesn’t need treatment.
A new study says that the presence of this condition may raise the risk of afib by as much as 40%. That doesn’t mean you have afib if you get postural hypotension. It just means your risk will be higher and that you will need to be more vigilant.
“We hope our research will sensitize physicians to a possible link between orthostatic hypotension and atrial fibrillation, and that they will go the extra step to see if something more serious is going on when patients experience rapid blood pressure fluctuations,” says study leader Sunil K. Agarwal, M.D., M.P.H., Ph.D., a fellow in the Division of General Internal Medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “We want this on their radar screens.”
If you get dizzy when you stand up and you’re concerned you may have afib then you have a good reason to go ahead and schedule a doctor’s appointment soon. Remember that afib is progressive and early treatment is the key to managing this disease.
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