VasoVagal Syncope

Tilt Test was positive, all Heart Test Normal, wearing belt for a month, then may have implant machine for a month. Cardiologist not so sure syncope since it only happened after the medicine was introduced. I have passed out this year over 12 times. Blood Pressure and Heart Rate Drop and then I hit the floor with my face no warning.. Am I a candidate for pacemaker if Belt test and machine in test so nothing.



by sboissonnas - 2007-08-21 02:08:11

Hi DesertRose,

If I'm reading your post right, your tilt table test was positive, but all your heart tests were negative? It sounds like it's possible that you really do just have vasovagal syncope and maybe don't need a pacemaker. From what I understand, maybe a beta blocker (prescription medication) would help prevent or reduce your fainting spells. (Please note: I am not even CLOSE to being a doctor!)

I'm basing this on what my doctors told me when I was diagnosed (with both vasovagal syncope and long QT syndrome) - they told me that both conditions are usually just treated with a beta blocker. In my case, though, my heart had stopped completely when I fainted from the tilt table test, and for long enough that they felt it was pretty important that I get the pacemaker as a backup in case I ever fainted again.

So... if you faint a lot, but they don't think your heart stops from it, and you don't seem to have any other heart issues... then maybe all you need are prescription drugs and not a pacemaker?

The other thing you could do is ask them to screen you for Long QT Syndrome (LQTS). It too results in unexplained, often sudden fainting spells and is often misdiagnosed as vasovagal syncope. But in your case, if the tilt table test was positive then you probably have VVS too, nitro or not. I think the key to the tilt table test isn't whether or not you faint, but whether BOTH your heart rate and blood pressure drop when you do. So if you did faint, then they should have been able to tell if both those things took place.

Hope this helps,

You Poor Dear!

by ela-girl - 2007-08-21 02:08:53

It is frustrating trying to get a diagnosis and sometimes even getting a doctor to believe what's going on with you. I had so many different tests and doctors couldn't figure out what was up with me. My tilt test was also positive but only after the nitro. and I passed out the last few seconds. I had holter monitors tons of times with no results. My blackouts and "spells" would happen so randomly and sometimes a lot in a short time or just a few times over a longer period that a lot of these tests and monitors didn't catch what was going on. I didn't drive for about 4 years and I would even pass out at school in front of my students. It's been a long battle, but I finally now have a great EP and this pacemaker (via emergency surgery) that is saving my life and letting me function like a 'normal' person. I know that doctors say that a pm will not necessarily stop the syncope, but I can tell you (and so can others) that it really does (it has for me anyways). My heart rate would be 4 beats a minute and blood pressure would be 60/40 and lower. So hang in there....there IS hope!!!!


Yes but...

by ela-girl - 2007-08-21 07:08:49

(and by no means am I a doctor either) but I did end up being told of some heart conditions I had and before the pm was told that I had the syncope and no heart issues. The doctors just weren't able to catch the problem at the right time to diagnosis it. Even tests didn't help with the diagnosis--they had to actually "see' the problem in action. Anyways...I guess I'm saying that you can be diagnosised with the syncope and have heart tests come out 'normal' and that really not be the case as with me. I personally don't feel that I had a great doctor in the beginning either, so who knows! It is just that way.



by Looney27 - 2007-08-27 02:08:10

Hi, I just had my pacemaker implanted in July 2007. My case sounds a lot like yours. I faint suddenly, sometimes with warning and sometimes without. Anyway, my tilt table was positive and my heart stopped for 48 seconds. Since I have my pm I sometimes get dizzy (only twice), but have not fainted. Additionally, I take a betablocker once a day. The other important thing all the doctors have told me is to stay hydrated. Drink a lot of water all the time, it will help the condition.

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