Vaso-Vagal Discussion

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From: Richard (


We have lived in a small town in Mexico during the Winter months for the past eight years. The town is in the mountains, about 6800 feet high and is quite hilly. I have somewhat high blood pressure which is under control with medication including a diuretic.

This year, for the first time, I experienced quite a bit of lightheadiness, mostly after stopping from a walk up a hilly street. It was bothersome but passed quickly after a few moments. I saw a doctor and was advised to alter my blood pressure medication. Also, because of a mistake by me, I actually increased the amount of diuretic.

About a month ago, I came down with a severe stomach ailment, probably from something I ate. The next morning, while standing at the sink, I began to feel lightheadedness and found myself on the floor. Obviously, I passed out. My wife took me to the ER where I was hydrated and felt quite a bit better in the next several hours.

I returned to the States in late March and went to my doctor here. He wanted to take some tests and began to draw blood. That did it again and I ended up in the ER again for the purpose seeing a cardiologist and taking some tests. The tests, including a thalium stress test, an echocardiogram and a tilt table test, are scheduled over the next two weeks. I am fairly sure the problem is not heart related but time will tell.

I am getting the impression that Vaso-Vagal, in and of itself, is not serious. What is serious is the damage that can occur from an episode while driving or just from falling down in the wrong place. I would like some further input on this.

Also, is there a cure? What can be done to prevent it or aleviate it? Drinking water and taking salt to prevent dehydration seems logical but I would like some more input on this score as well.

I would appreciate any comments either on this site or by email direct to the address above, or both.


This web site is not a substitute for a thorough medical evaluation and diagnosis of your vaso-vagal type symptoms.  Medical treatment and diagnosis is the only acceptable initial response to these serious symptoms since they might present from any number of life threatening and treatable illnesses. It is for you and your physician to rule out more serious illnesses; Please don't use this online forum as an alternative to getting responsible medical attention and being under the care of a physician for the duration of any unknown, suspected or dangerous vaso-vagal syndrome symptoms.
Last changed: June 22, 2007