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Life Insurance, Orthostatic Hypotension, Frequently Asked Questions

In this article, we will explore the factors that impact life insurance underwriting for individuals with orthostatic hypotension and provide valuable insights to help you navigate the process successfully.

Understanding Orthostatic Hypotension

Orthostatic hypotension, also known as postural hypotension, refers to a condition where an individual experiences a sudden drop in blood pressure upon standing up from a sitting or lying position. This drop in blood pressure can lead to dizziness, lightheadedness, and, in some cases, fainting.


There are several factors that can contribute to the development of orthostatic hypotension:

  • Dehydration: Insufficient fluid intake or dehydration can lead to low blood volume, resulting in a drop in blood pressure when standing.
  • Medications: Certain medications, such as those used to treat high blood pressure, heart conditions, or Parkinson’s disease, can interfere with the body’s ability to regulate blood pressure.
  • Neurological Disorders: Conditions like Parkinson’s disease, multiple system atrophy, and diabetic neuropathy can affect the autonomic nervous system, which controls blood pressure regulation.
  • Aging: Orthostatic hypotension becomes more common as individuals age, as the body’s ability to adjust blood pressure decreases.


The symptoms of orthostatic hypotension can vary in severity and may include:

  • Dizziness or lightheadedness upon standing up
  • Fainting or feeling faint
  • Blurred vision
  • Weakness or fatigue
  • Nausea
  • Confusion or difficulty concentrating


Managing orthostatic hypotension often involves a combination of lifestyle modifications and medical interventions:

  • Increase Fluid Intake: Staying hydrated can help maintain adequate blood volume and prevent drops in blood pressure. Aim to drink plenty of fluids throughout the day, especially when planning to be active or standing for extended periods.
  • Avoid Triggers: Identify and avoid triggers that worsen orthostatic hypotension symptoms, such as hot environments, prolonged standing, or sudden position changes.
  • Compression Stockings: Wearing compression stockings or abdominal binders can help improve blood flow and prevent blood pooling in the lower extremities, reducing the severity of symptoms.
  • Medications: In some cases, medications may be prescribed to manage orthostatic hypotension. These can include medications that increase blood volume, constrict blood vessels, or enhance the autonomic nervous system’s functioning.

Worst Case Scenario:

While orthostatic hypotension can be challenging to manage, it is important to note that most cases are not life-threatening. However, severe and recurrent episodes of fainting can lead to injuries, such as fractures from falls. It is crucial to address orthostatic hypotension symptoms with appropriate medical care and take necessary precautions to prevent accidents.

Impact on One’s Life Insurance Application

When it comes to orthostatic hypotension and its impact on life insurance applications, the severity of the condition and the presence of underlying complications play a crucial role. Here are the potential outcomes for life insurance applications based on the severity and underlying conditions:

  • Mild Cases with Few or No Significant Complications: Individuals with mild orthostatic hypotension, where symptoms are minimal and do not significantly impact daily activities, are likely to be eligible for preferred rates. Preferred rates generally indicate that the applicant is in good health and poses a lower risk to the insurance company. However, it’s important to note that each insurance company may have its own underwriting guidelines, so eligibility may vary.
  • Moderate Cases with Manageable Complications: For individuals with moderate orthostatic hypotension and manageable complications, such as occasional dizziness or lightheadedness, the life insurance underwriting process may be more nuanced. The insurance company will carefully evaluate the overall health of the applicant, including any underlying conditions or medications that contribute to orthostatic hypotension. These cases are typically considered on a case-by-case basis, taking into account factors such as medical history, treatment adherence, and lifestyle modifications.
  • Severe Cases or Cases with Significant Underlying Conditions: In cases where orthostatic hypotension is severe, or if there are significant underlying conditions contributing to the condition, the life insurance underwriting process becomes more challenging. Insurance companies may consider these cases on an individual basis and may require additional medical information, such as test results, specialist evaluations, and detailed treatment plans. The premiums and coverage offered may vary significantly, and the final decision may depend on the insurer’s assessment of the applicant’s overall health and risk factors.

It’s important to note that each insurance company has its own underwriting guidelines and risk tolerance. Therefore, it is advisable to work with an experienced agent or broker who can help identify insurance companies that specialize in underwriting high-risk cases, including individuals with orthostatic hypotension. These professionals can guide applicants through the application process, assist in gathering necessary medical documentation, and advocate for the best possible rates and coverage.

Factors Impacting Life Insurance Approvals

Outline the factors that life insurance companies consider when underwriting applicants with orthostatic hypotension. These may include:

  • Medical History: Discuss how an individual’s medical history plays a significant role in the underwriting process. Elaborate on the importance of providing accurate and detailed information about past diagnoses, treatments, and management of orthostatic hypotension.
  • Current Health Condition: Explain how an applicant’s current health status, including blood pressure readings, heart function, and medication usage, affects the life insurance underwriting decision. Discuss the importance of regular check-ups and providing up-to-date medical records.
  • Lifestyle Factors: Address the impact of lifestyle choices such as exercise, diet, and stress management on the underwriting process. Encourage individuals with orthostatic hypotension to adopt healthy habits that can positively influence their life insurance application.

Tips for Securing Life Insurance Approvals

Provide practical tips and strategies to enhance the chances of securing life insurance coverage with orthostatic hypotension:

  • Working with an Experienced Agent: Emphasize the importance of partnering with an agent who specializes in high-risk cases, including individuals with orthostatic hypotension. An experienced agent can navigate the underwriting process more effectively and help identify insurance companies that are more lenient toward such conditions.
  • Gather Comprehensive Medical Records: Advise applicants to collect all relevant medical records, including test results, treatment plans, and doctor’s notes. This documentation will provide a clear picture of the individual’s condition and adherence to prescribed therapies.
  • Provide Additional Information: Encourage applicants to submit a personal statement detailing their experience living with orthostatic hypotension. Sharing information about lifestyle modifications, medication adherence, and regular monitoring can help insurers gain confidence in the applicant’s commitment to managing their condition.
  • Review Multiple Insurance Companies: Recommend researching and comparing policies from multiple insurance companies to find the one that offers the best coverage and rates for individuals with orthostatic hypotension.

In conclusion…

Securing life insurance coverage with orthostatic hypotension may require some additional effort, but it is definitely possible. By understanding the condition, gathering comprehensive medical records, and working with an experienced agent, individuals can enhance their chances of obtaining life insurance approvals. Lifestyle modifications and maintaining regular check-ups can also contribute to a more favorable underwriting decision.