Vaso-Vagal Discussion

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FYI from 15 yrs. experience w/ VV



HI to all....

I check in on this board at times to see what everyone is saying about fainting etc. I just want to share my "experiences" in hopes that it might give someone, especially scared, younger girls suffering with fainting, some reassurance. I started fainting in college when I was 18. My episodes ALWAYS are associated with SEVERE diarrea (sp?) I wake up with stomach cramping, go to the bathroom and as I am sitting there, "waiting" I start to get the feeling that I am going into a roaring tunnel and the walls are closing in. I am usually extremely hot and have taken off all of my clothes and generally just feel like I am about to die. Then, the next thing I know, I am coming to on the floor, I'm extremely cold and weak and for a few minutes during the initial coming to, I can't move a thing. I am just getting aware of what has happened. I am thirty-three now. I have seen at least 5 doctors about this and none of them diagnosed me. I diagnosed myself by reading a medical encyclopedia and from this web site. What I want to offer in the way of encouragement is this. I cannot prevent my fainting nor predict it. (Sometimes I have severe diarrea but don't faint.) However, I have had two children, the first through c-section and the second vaginally with no problems whatsoever. I did have a spell with each pregnancy at the beginning but no more during the pregnancy. I have blacked my eye once from hitting the cabinet in front of me. So ever since, when I feel the tunnel feeling coming on, I get down on the floor and just lay there. (I mean, I'm going to end up there anyway.) Sometimes, this prevents the fainting. Sometimes I faint anyway but I don't hurt myself. My husband says I look dead when I am out and it scared him to death. But, the good news is that the condition hasn't gotten any worse in 15 years, (I range anywhere from one month to one year between spells) and I haven't had to slow down one bit or had any side-effects from having this problem. It is scary, but don't let it stop you from doing what you want to do. I don't think there is a Dr. who can "treat" this....You just have to learn how to deal with it in relation to your own experiences. I hope this helps someone. I could be so much worse off and at least this is just temporarily discomforting and doesn't last long.

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