Medical Disorders
Basic InformationLookupsLatest News
AHA News: Amid Coronavirus Crisis, Exercise Caution When Exercising OutdoorsAsthma, COPD Raise Odds for Severe COVID-19, Lung Experts WarnCoronavirus Hangs Around Even After Symptoms SubsideCan Food From an Infected Cook Give You COVID-19?Pregnant Women Need to Guard Against CoronavirusVitamin D Might Aid Seniors' Recovery From Hip Fracture: StudyWith 3D Printer, N.Y. Hospital Converts Sleep Apnea Machines Into VentilatorsAnother COVID-19 Vaccine Being Tested in Mice'Stay at Home' Orders Are Stressing U.S. Families, Survey ShowsAn Expert's Guide to Fighting Coronavirus StressHeart Patients Need to Be Wary of CoronavirusU.S. Coronavirus Cases Pass 200,000, as Jobless Claims Soar to 10 MillionIs Thyroid Hormone Dangerously Overprescribed in Older Patients?Mild COVID-19 Often Appears With Only Gastro Symptoms: StudyFDA Pulls Heartburn Drug Zantac From MarketCertain Health Conditions Up Risks for Severe COVID-19Parents, Arm Your Kids Against COVID-19 With Good Hand-Washing HabitsFDA Approves Malaria Drugs to Treat COVID-19, Despite Little Proof They Work'Fever Tracker' Suggests Social Distancing Is Already WorkingDon't Fall Prey to COVID-19 ScammersBeing Chained to Your Desk Might Harm Your ThyroidWhat You Should Know If Your Surgery Has Been Put on HoldAnother Coronavirus Health Threat: Too Few Asthma InhalersOdds of Hospitalization, Death With COVID-19 Rise Steadily With Age: StudyAHA News: Health Emergency? Don't Hesitate to Get HelpToo Many Patients, Too Few Ventilators: How U.S. Hospitals Cope With COVID-19AI Might Spot Which COVID-19 Patients Are at Risk of Severe DiseaseWhat Dental Offices Are Doing to Prevent Coronavirus Infection?A Parent's Guide to Fighting Coronavirus StressTrump Extends Social Distancing to April 30 as COVID-19 Cases SurgeRecovery From Mild Brain Trauma Takes Longer Than Expected: StudyStaying at Home During the Pandemic? Use Technology to Stay ConnectedAHA News: Understanding the Basics of 'Herd Immunity'Multiple Measures of Social Distancing Required to Slow Coronavirus: StudyCough, Fever, Fatigue? Head to CDC's Online Coronavirus Symptom CheckerThree Countries Have Kept Coronavirus in Check; Here's How They Did ItTrial Finds Acupuncture May Help Prevent MigrainesSevere COVID-19 Might Injure the HeartWhy Are Teens, Millennials Ignoring Coronavirus Warnings?An Expert's Guide to Fact-Checking Coronavirus Info OnlineLivestock, Poultry Safe From Coronavirus: ExpertU.S. Hospital Beds Were Already Maxed Out Before Coronavirus PandemicFDA Warns of Defective EpiPen DangersPoll Finds High Anxiety in the Time of CoronavirusCould Robots Be Deployed to Front Line in Fighting COVID-19?COVID-19 May Force Some Cancer Patients to Delay TreatmentWhat People With Parkinson's Need to Know About COVID-19How to Weather Social Isolation During Coronavirus PandemicCOVID-19 Infection Likely Worse for Vapers, SmokersWhen Arteries Narrow, Chest Pain Can Come Earlier for Women Than Men
Questions and AnswersVideosLinksBook Reviews
Related Topics

Men's Health
Women's Health

Taking Steroids for Rheumatoid Arthritis, IBD? Your Odds for Hypertension May Rise

HealthDay News
by By Steven Reinberg
HealthDay Reporter
Updated: Mar 23rd 2020

new article illustration

MONDAY, March 23, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- People taking steroids to treat chronic inflammatory diseases are at high risk for developing high blood pressure, British investigators report.

Inflammatory bowel disease and rheumatoid arthritis are often treated with steroids for an extended period, at high doses, and as many as a third of patients in the study became hypertensive, the scientists said.

"Steroids are very good at tamping down inflammation and save many lives, but they can also cause harm," said researcher Dr. Paul Stewart, executive dean of the Faculty of Medicine and Health at the University of Leeds.

Patients, however, are often kept on steroids for too long at doses higher than they need, he said.

"One of the major side effects is high blood pressure, which is a major health hazard," Stewart said. "It's a risk factor for heart disease, stroke and premature death."

"This is a wake-up call for doctors to be more vigilant in measuring blood pressure and using a minimum effective dose for the shortest period of time," he said.

Patients taking steroids for a long time should ask their doctor if they still need steroids and if their dose is the lowest dose possible, Stewart said.

He also said that treating high blood pressure can lower the risk caused by the steroids, especially in patients who need to keep taking them.

For the study, Stewart and his university team collected data on more than 71,000 patients from general practices in England between 1998 and 2017.

Inflammatory bowel disease and rheumatoid arthritis were the most common conditions being treated with steroids. Other conditions included vasculitis (inflammation of the blood vessels) and lupus, the researchers noted.

Among these patients, 35% developed high blood pressure. The longer patients took steroids, the greater the odds of hypertension.

Researchers were not able to pinpoint who makes up this third of patients. So whether obesity or other risk factors for high blood pressure were at play isn't known. Stewart doesn't think, however, that these risk factors are relevant to the effect of steroids. But the study only found associations, not a cause-and-effect link.

The report was published March 23 in the Canadian Medical Association Journal.

One U.S. heart expert not involved with the study outlined how dangerous high blood pressure can be.

"Hypertension is known as the silent killer. It is often not seen as a symptom by patients until it leads to heart attacks and strokes," said Dr. Satjit Bhusri, a cardiologist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City. "Numerous studies support that blood pressure control is a major player in heart disease."

Chronic steroid use increases the body's stress response and causes a spike in blood pressure, he explained.

This spike can lead to hypertension, increasing the risk for heart disease, Bhusri added.

"It is important that all patients on chronic steroids be screened for hypertension and their risk profile for heart disease," he said.

More information

For more on high blood pressure, see the American Heart Association.


Amazon Smile


Children and Adult services are available now with no wait time.  

Please contact HBH at 860-548-0101, option 2.


powered by centersite dot net