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Thyroid Diseases

Hypothyrodism and Blood Pressure

01/17/2007

Question:

I read that if you have an underactive thyroid, you will also have low blood pressure and slow heart rate. Is this true? If I get treated for it could it make my blood pressure to go above normal? I have high blood pressure and now since they think that I might have an underactive thyroid my blood pressure has gone back to normal.

Answer:

I don't think your normal blood pressure is from your hypothyroidism. Hypothyroidism can decrease the top number in the blood pressure, but it actually increases the bottom number. This is not good for you. If you take thyroid pills and they return your thyroid blood tests to normal, then your blood pressure will be whatever it would have been if you had never had thyroid disease. Even if hypothyroidism did decrease your blood pressure, it has other effects that are bad (for example, increasing your cholesterol) so leaving you hypothyroid would not be a good way to treat your high blood pressure.

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Response by:

Thomas A Murphy, MD, FACP, FACE Thomas A Murphy, MD, FACP, FACE
Associate Professor of Medicine
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University