High blood pressure and leg pain

Leg aches, pains and cramps? It’s a bothersome sensation easily put down to simply feeling our age. 




But did you know that leg pain can be a sign of high blood pressure (or hypertension), a serious condition affecting around one in three adults in Australia? And it’s estimated that half the people suffering high blood pressure are not diagnosed or receiving treatment.

So don’t ignore your leg pain - it could be sending you a lifesaving message to get your blood pressure checked. And the good news is that there are many ways to reduce high blood pressure once you know you have it.

Here we explore how high blood pressure and leg pain are connected and discover how to tackle the problem.


What is high blood pressure?

Our hearts pump blood around the body, delivering oxygen and nutrients. As the blood moves, it pushes against the sides of our blood vessels - the strength of this pushing is our blood pressure.

When our blood pressure is too high, it’s harder for the blood to move around, putting extra strain on the heart and blood vessels. Over time, this can lead to problems including heart attacks, stroke, kidney disease and some forms of dementia.


How does high blood pressure cause leg pain? 

In healthy people, the vessels carrying blood from our hearts to the rest of our body are strong and flexible, with a smooth inner lining.

But high blood pressure changes this. The high pressure within the vessels causes small tears which roughen the smooth inner lining, allowing fatty substances passing through the blood to latch onto them.

Over time, this can lead to blood vessel walls becoming lined with fatty deposits, known as plaques, which decrease circulation to the legs. The blood vessels to the legs becoming clogged in this way is known as Peripheral Artery Disease or PAD.


What is PAD? 

Telltale signs of PAD may include:

  • Aches, pains and cramping. As the blood flow to the legs decreases, your nerves and muscles aren’t receiving the oxygen and nutrients they need. This can cause pain or cramps in our calf, thighs or buttocks, especially after exercise.
  • Leg tiredness. Feeling as though your legs are too tired to walk as far or fast as you once did may indicate claudication, a type of leg pain specifically associated with PAD. It often begins with leg pain while walking, which improves with rest and recurs when you start walking again.
  • Visible changes. Loss of leg hair, discolouration of the skin and cuts, grazes or ulcers that take a long time to heal can all be signs of decreased circulation. And if your legs and feet are frequently swelling, then high blood pressure may have already started contributing to heart disease.
  • Changes in sensation. Cold hands and feet can signify poor circulation due to high blood pressure, and a weakened pulse in the feet can sometimes cause a burning sensation, or numbness and tingling.

What can I do to reduce my blood pressure? 

If you think your aching legs could be a sign of high blood pressure, the most important step is to see your GP or other healthcare professional as soon as possible to have it tested - it’s the only way to be sure.

Testing for high blood pressure is quick, simple and painless. And if you are found to have it, don’t panic. Your doctor may prescribe medication, lifestyle changes or both - there are many effective ways to reduce your blood pressure, and in some cases the condition can be reversed completely.

Lifestyle changes that may reduce high blood pressure include:


Yes, you can – Revitive is designed to improve the blood circulation in your legs and feet. High blood pressure is not a contraindication to using Revitive. It is a pre-existing medical condition and we recommend discussing with your doctor, who has a full view of your medical history, before using Revitive.

Revitive Circulation Booster is unsuitable if you are fitted with an electronic implanted device such as a heart pacemaker or Automatic Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (AICD); you are pregnant; being treated for, or have symptoms of Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT): such as pain, swelling and tenderness, heavy ache, warm or red skin in the leg.

High blood pressure is a risk factor for poor circulation, a condition also medically diagnosed as peripheral arterial disease, causing symptoms such as leg aches and pain, leg cramps in the calf or thighs while exercising or weakness in the legs. 

High blood pressure can cause pain, aching and cramping in the legs due to insufficient blood flow to the muscles. When blood vessels are damaged from high blood pressure, fatty deposits, called plaque, can build-up causing blood vessels to narrow making it harder for blood to flow around the body. This same build-up of the fatty deposits can also build up in your leg arteries, leading to a lesser known disease called Peripheral Arterial Disease (PAD).


Your say:

'I am a skeptical hard-nosed scientist and did quite a lot of research regarding the claims made by the manufacturer and was pleased to see the links with an established UK university. I am reasonably fit for my age but was suffering from badly swollen legs due to a slightly leaky heart valve. I could no longer wear my shoes. After 4 weeks and working slowly up to a pulse rate of 80 for two 30-minute sessions twice a day, my legs are back to normal, I can get back into my shoes, no longer need to put my feet up each night, and have resumed a regular 2km walk each morning at 4-6 kph.'

David, Australia

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