Eighty-two-year-old golf legend Arnold Palmer was hospitalized on Sunday because he was experiencing high blood pressure as a result of a new medication, according to news reports.
Palmer had to receive medical attention instead of watch the final round at his namesake Arnold Palmer Invitational golf tournament on Sunday, the Washington Post reported.
The Orlando Sentinel reported that Palmer was still having some tests done at Dr. Phillips hospital on Monday morning before being allowed back home.
"He's fine. He's going through tests right now," Scott Wellington, the Arnold Palmer Invitational's tournament director, told the Orlando Sentinel.
There hasn't been any immediate information on what medication Palmer is taking that caused the boost in blood pressure, but there are many drugs that can cause hypertension.
The National Institutes of Health reported that such drugs include nasal decongestants, migraine drugs, over-the-counter cold and asthma medications, hormones (like birth control pills), corticosteroids, erythropoietin and cyclosporine. Alcohol, amphetamines and illicit drugs like cocaine and ecstasy can also increase blood pressure.
Hypertension can also occur when you either stop taking a drug, or take a lower dosage of a drug, according to the NIH.
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, also known as NSAIDs, can raise blood pressure levels because they cause fluid retention and decreased kidney function, WebMD reported. Cold and cough drugs can work against blood pressure medication, in effect deactivating it, or they may contain NSAIDs that can increase blood pressure.
WebMD advises to make sure your doctor knows about every single one of the medications you are taking, and to also read the labels on drugs when you're buying them over the counter. It's also wise to talk to your doctor before buying OTC drugs, WebMD said.
Blood pressure is a matter of how much blood the heart is pumping, in association with how narrow the arteries are, according to the Mayo Clinic. High blood pressure occurs when the force of the blood is so high that it can lead to heart problems like blood vessel damage, heart attack, stroke, heart failure, aneurysm and metabolic syndrome.
Most people with high blood pressure are symptomless, and may not even know that they have the condition unless they get a blood pressure reading, the Mayo Clinic reported. The Orlando Sentinel reported that Palmer's blood pressure was being monitored continuously throughout last week, which was how his condition was detected.
"It wasn't anything to do with any ailments or any discomfort he felt," IMG's Alastair Johnston, Palmer's business manager, told the Orlando Sentinel. "The blood pressure was at a level where the doctor involved suggested that he go immediately to get more intensive evaluation at the hospital."
Blood pressure measurements are written in terms of systolic over diastolic. Systolic pressure is "as the heart beats," according to the National Institutes of Health, while diastolic pressure is the relaxation of the heart between heartbeats.
A person with a normal blood pressure level has a systolic blood pressure reading of 120 millimeters of mercury or less, and a diastolic blood pressure reading of 80 millimeters of mercury or less.
A person is considered hypertensive (has high blood pressure) when the systolic blood pressure is between 140 and 159, and the diastolic blood pressure is between 90 and 99.