Phobias Community
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Avatar universal

Weird phobia

Does anybody else have anxiety, HIGH anxiety of getting their blood pressure checked? About a year and a half to two years ago I had a very weird spell in the emergency room when a nurse took my blood pressure. I felt a head rush and got dizzy and almost blacked out. My stomach went into a knot and I felt like I couldn't breathe for about 20 to 30 seconds. Did the blood pressure cuff tightening on my arm cause an intense panic attack? I was at the hospital a few hours and when they took my pressure again, the same thing happened. Now, almost two years later, I am scared to death to go to a doctor's office because of the cuff. I know taking blood pressure is necessary and harmless and I've had my pressure taken dozens of times since then with no problem, but I still get all worked up every time a doctor appointment comes up. Does anybody have any words of wisdom I can have? Thanks.
5 Responses
Avatar universal
That is not a weird phobia at all in my opinion.  It is so common that they actually refer it to 'white coat syndrome' in many places.  One starts to get all anxiety stricken and your blood pressure shoots through the roof.  At the doctors office, mine is typically 30 points higher when I get there and drops back down once I leave...my doc even knows to take it at the end of the appointment.  
672514 tn?1265655141
I've working in Hospitals all my life (adult life) and this is the normal allot! more in Men then Women. I even get anxious when I'm on the other side.
Avatar universal
Mike it very well could be the fact that you related the blood pressure cuff and reading to the hospital and an unpleasant experience.  I have low blood pressure and measure mine daily at home with an Omron automatic BP machine.  It has an electronic cuff and tells you your heart rate and blood pressure.  Do you have one at home?  Maybe try buying a home one and doing it in the comfort of your home and seeing if you react the same way.  If you dont like it you can stop.  I think little by little you will eventually overcome this fear.  
Avatar universal
Yes I do!! I'm a 26 yr old female, normal weight in good health...I should mention I DO have anxiety and the majority of my anxiety is over my health...I don't like to label but i'd agree I do have hypochondriac tendencies....it started that once at the docs office my 2 little boys were there with me goofin around and in the middle of that they were checking my BP...it was like 132/86 (not that bad but elevated) it really FREAKED me out b/c I am somewhat of a nut over my health, they said it was prob related to me telling my boys to settle down in the middle of my reading...they said not to worry about it (MUCH easier said then done) now every time i go to the doc i get sooooo freaked out over my BP that it sky rockets to like 146/96, 161/67<---diastolic was good on this one, 138/78...nurse said it's a cycle with "white coat syndrome" b/c u are worried it will be high so then it will be high...they recommended i get an at home cuff which i did...the reading were good 114/68, even 98/64 pulse 61....but now it has overconsumed my thoughts ( yes i know this sounds crazy) so even when i take at home sometimes it will be 128/86 etc...i know this is mind related and i can't seem to get myself to snap out of the worry cycle over my BP....it's become like an actual phobia now...have u been able to do anything to get yourself outta the BP phobia cycle?? if so please message me
2216121 tn?1339382543
You know after reading everyone's comments really makes me feel like I'm not alone. I know exactly what you mean. It's just white coat syndrome. Mine started from one bad experience from getting mine taken.  I just was nervous that day and it was high, now I'm scared to death it's going to be high and the worry makes it high lol... It's seriously mind over matter and what helps me is to tell myself (in a funny sarcastic way) chill out I'm just getting my BP takin and hey if I'm worried that I'm going to die at least I'm surrounded by medical professionals ;) Anxiety ***** I deal with it everyday. But funny thing is I only deal with it when I think about it. I swear , I'm convinced if a doctor never told me I have anxiety , I wouldn't have it :(
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