Vaso-Vagal Discussion

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Re: VV while laughing

From: JRW


Yes, this happens to some of the rest of us also. It is called Vaso-vagal syncopy. I have triggered an incident on 3 occasions where I have laughed hard and probably 3 incidents where I have coughed hard. To me, it just feels like you have exhaled and the wind isnt coming back to your lungs and my blood pressure drops dramatically and I either "grey" out or black out. Of course I wake up weak due to the low blood pressure, hot and sweaty, clammy, and pretty tired. Usually I've got to lay down for a period of time to have my BP get back to normal. I've had all the tests done. No problems with the heart. However when I had the echo doppler done the technician asked me to hold my breath and when I did he quickly told me to "let go". He implied that many people have some dwell time (5 to 10 seconds) between inputs to their system and the heart actually responding. I got the opinion that in my case the response was instantaneous-----which might explain a rapid heart reaction to a hard laugh or a hard cough. Nothing else was found---nothing else was done. Lots of tests run----no problems........ I just try not to laugh too hard and to make sure I take good cough medicine if I have a real bad cough. Best of luck. Yes it does happen to other people also.

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