Tuesday, March 09, 2010
The other day I had a sixty year old male come into my office with chronic headaches of the migraine variety. When I looked at his bright red complexion and felt his very tense pulses I immediately suspected he had blood pressure issues. I took his blood pressure and found it measuring about 160/90. I told him that this was reason for concern and could possibly be, at least in part, causing his headaches. He had been on BP medication years before but took himself off of them after it had gone down. While I understand patients being adverse to pharmaceuticals, I didn't want this problem to go untreated. High blood pressure is after all "the silent killer". I made a plan with him to try a series of acupuncture treatments in combination with herbs to see if we couldn't get his blood pressure down to an acceptable rate in just a couple months of weekly treatment, and then try to maintain that with herbs and occasional acupuncture as well as lifestyle changes.
At the end of the first session my client's pressure had dropped to 150/80 and his headache had significantly improved. I was pleased but not excited. With younger patients (in their 30s or 40s) I'd seen their blood pressure drop more than 20 points and come down to within optimal ranges (115/75 for example) with just one treatment. Perhaps this meant my current patient's blood vessels had some damage and this was not purely a functional problem. I will closely monitor his blood pressure as I treat him over the next couple months, and refer him to his MD for further examination to rule out serious conditions. In the past I've been quite successful treating high blood pressure with acupuncture and herbs so I feel there is promise if he is committed to helping himself with Chinese Medicine.
If you live in the Santa Rosa, CA or Sonoma County areas and would like to see if acupuncture might be helpful for you or a loved one call Kat Delse, L.Ac. at (707) 775-8311 or visit http://www.santarosa-acupuncture.com
for more information.