Low Blood Pressure and High Pulse Rate

Low blood pressure can cause high pulse rate. Also, in particular types of arrhythmias high pulse rate can result in fall in the blood pressure High pulse rate describes pulse higher than 100 per minute, and is likewise described as tachycardia.

Causes of Low Blood Pressure and High Pulse Rate

High pulse rate or tachycardia is typically associated with low blood pressure. Tachycardia is a reflex response to fall in blood pressure. When the blood pressure is low and the tissues of the body are not receiving appropriate perfusion, the body raises heart rate in order to compensate for the low perfusion. Therefore, nearly all causes of low blood pressure will lead to low blood pressure with tachycardia.

Normal person without any symptoms and no main disease condition (that could cause hypotension) will normally have normal pulse rate. In professional athletes and those who do regular workout, both blood pressure and pulse rate may be low. This also is definitely regular finding and requires no treatment.

High Pulse Rate
High pulse rate with low blood pressure

Many heart arrhythmias can result in a high pulse rate and a low blood pressure. In this case, it is the high pulse rate that is causing the low blood pressure. The pulse rate in such cases is very high, and hence the heart is beating so fast, that it is not getting enough time effectively fill itself with the blood. An example of such condition is atrial fibrillation. In this condition there is arrhythmia in the upper chamber (atria) of the heart which stimulates the heart to beat at very quick rate. The lower chambers (ventricles) are not sufficiently filled with blood, resulting in a fall in blood pressure.

Additional assessment is always needed to ascertain the cause of low blood pressure and tachycardia. Treatment depends on the main condition resulting in the hypotension and tachycardia.

The most typical example of tachycardia causing low blood pressure is atrial fibrillation. Atrial fibrillation is a disorder of the heart defined by quick and irregular electrical discharges from the muscle of the heart causing the ventricles to contract irregularly and (generally) rapidly. The rapidly contracting ventricles do not have enough time to fill maximally with blood prior to each contraction, and the amount of blood that is pumped declines in spite of the quicker heart rate. Other abnormally quick heart rhythms such as ventricular tachycardia likewise can produce low blood pressure, sometimes even lethal shock.

Medications that cause low blood pressure

Medications such as calcium channel blockers, beta blockers, and digoxin (Lanoxin) can slow the rate at which the heart agreements. Some senior people are incredibly sensitive to these medications since they are more likely to have diseased hearts and electrical conduction tissues. In some individuals, the heart rate can become alarmingly sluggish even with little dosages of these medications.

Medications used in treating high blood pressure (such as angiotensin converting enzyme or ACE inhibitors, angiotensin receptor blockers, beta blockers, calcium channel blockers, and alpha blockers) can exceedingly reduce blood pressure and lead to symptomatic low blood pressure particularly amongst the elderly.

Water tablets (diuretics) such as hydrochlorothiazide (HydroDIURIL) and furosemide (Lasix) can decrease blood volume by triggering excessive urination.

Medications used for alleviating anxiety, such as amitriptyline (Elavil); Parkinson’s disease, such as levodopa-carbidopa (Sinemet); and erectile dysfunction (impotence), such as sildenafil (Viagra), vardenafil (Levitra), and tadalafil (Cialis) when used in combination with nitroglycerin, can cause low blood pressure.

Natural remedies for low blood pressure

Natural remedies have actually not been proven. Some herbs reported to raise blood pressure consist of ginger, rosemary, aniseed, cinnamon, and pepper. Do not take any herbs without first consulting your doctor.


Low blood pressure and high pulse rate is a very common finding. Typically it is a reflex response to the falling blood pressure. However, in some cases extremely high pulse rate can cause a fall in the blood pressure.


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