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02 Dec 2004

Hypertension and fitness
I am on hypertension medication, ie. Tarka and Tenormin which keeps my heart rate down.
I need to get fit, what do you recommend. I took part in sport all my life up to approx. 10 years ago.
Answer 407 views
Expert
FitnessDoc
fitnessdoc

01 Jan 0001

Hi Chubby

Both the drugs you mention are in the class of drugs known as antihypertensives. The Tenormin is a beta blocker, which acts by blocking the nervous system activity which is responsible for lifting the heart rate and in so doing, they keep it down. The Tarka is slightly different, and from what I could find out about it, it actually acts in the blood vessels to prevent them from becoming too 'tense' or narrow. The obvious problem which you raise is then that exercise, where you have to lift your heart rate, becomes difficult.

Now, I don't know enough about the specific medication you mention to be able to give you medical advice - this is something that your doctor needs to assist with. What I can tell you however, is that you have medical options which are less 'harmful' to exercise. For example, you are currently on a drug which is a beta blocker and another which is an ACE inhibitor. Generally, the ACE or calcium uptake inhibitor, which is Tarka in your case, is more condusive to exercise.

As for how to approach this with the doctor, you have to realise that part of the application of medicine should be to minimize side effects, and so if you approach the doctor with the complaint that the medicine is producing this undesirable side effect, then the doctor is almost obliged to look into alternatives. Sometimes there are none, and you have to stick with something, but you can approach your doctor openly, and discuss other options, and just mention assertively that the current meds are not working out for you.

Good luck
The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical examination, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.
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