Keep an eye on your blood pressure
Know the symptoms and how to respond
Know your baseline blood pressure, triggers, and symptoms.
Autonomic Dysreflexia (AD) can occur for people with a spinal cord injury at or above T6. It can cause an involuntary reaction in the body as the nervous system becomes overstimulated.
The best way to prevent AD is to monitor bladder output, maintain a regular bowel program and to do regular skin checks to prevent pressure sores from occurring.
It is also a good idea to know what your ‘usual’ blood pressure rate is so that should you need to visit an emergency room you can let the treating doctor know.
When triggered, AD requires quick and correct action or there may be serious consequence such as a stroke. Because many health professionals are not familiar with this condition, it is important for people who are at risk for AD, including the people close to them, to recognise the symptoms and know how to act.