Low Blood Pressure (Hypotension)

  • Medical Author:
    John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP

    John P. Cunha, DO, is a U.S. board-certified Emergency Medicine Physician. Dr. Cunha's educational background includes a BS in Biology from Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, and a DO from the Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences in Kansas City, MO. He completed residency training in Emergency Medicine at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center in Newark, New Jersey.

  • Medical Editor: Jay W. Marks, MD
    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD

    Jay W. Marks, MD, is a board-certified internist and gastroenterologist. He graduated from Yale University School of Medicine and trained in internal medicine and gastroenterology at UCLA/Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

Low Blood Pressure Symptoms

Symptoms of low blood pressure or hypotension may include:

  • Fainting (syncope)
  • Dizziness
  • A feeling of lightheadedness
  • Chest pain
  • Blurred vision
  • Increased thirst
  • Nausea

Quick GuideLow Blood Pressure (Hypotension): Symptoms, Signs, Causes

Low Blood Pressure (Hypotension): Symptoms, Signs, Causes

Low blood pressure facts

  • Low blood pressure, also called hypotension, is blood pressure low enough that the flow of blood to the organs of the body is inadequate and symptoms and/or signs of low blood flow develop shock.
  • Low pressure alone, without symptoms or signs, usually is not unhealthy.
  • The symptoms of low blood pressure include lightheadedness, dizziness, and fainting. These symptoms are most prominent when individuals go from the lying or sitting position to the standing position (orthostatic hypotension).
  • Low blood pressure that causes an inadequate flow of blood to the body's organs can cause strokes, heart attacks, and kidney failure. It's most severe form is shock.
  • Common causes of low blood pressure include a reduced volume of blood, heart disease, and medications.
  • The cause of low blood pressure can be determined with blood tests, radiologic studies, and cardiac testing to look for heart failure and arrhythmias.
  • Treatment of low blood pressure is determined by the cause of the low pressure.
Reviewed on 4/16/2016
References
REFERENCES:

"Low Blood Pressure." American Heart Association. 4 Apr. 2012.

Cupp, Melanie Johns. "Herbal remedies: adverse effects and drug interactions." American Family Physician 59.5 (1999): 1239-1244.

Goldstein, D.S. and Y. Sharabi. “"eurogenic orthostatic hypotension: a pathophysiological approach." Circulation. 119.1 (2009): 139-146.

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