Ever felt dizzy or fainted? We often take such episodes extremely lightly as one could resume normal activities after gaining consciousness. However, such episodes regularly can be a major cause of worry. Every heard of syncope? This lesser-known health concern can have some serious repercussions on health if not taken tackled on time. Padma Bhushan Awardee Dr TS Kleir, Chairman, PSRI Heart Institute explains, "In syncope, a patient suddenly becomes unconscious. In most cases, the patient may feel light-headed or may have a blackout, and as a reason, may faint suddenly. In most cases, the patients revive and get back to a normal routine. There may be profuse sweating, but there is no paralysis or any other major health repercussions.
Lowered Blood Pressure Is The Major Reason
The brain is one such organ, which cannot work without blood supply even for a second. In cases of low BP, there is a reduced blood supply to the brain. As there is no blood supply, the person can faint suddenly. In such cases, the person falls flat on the floor, which enables blood supply to the brain. This is the reason why a patient immediately recovers after syncope, as per Dr Kleir.
However, if such episodes recur often, one should consult a specialist and get to know the root cause of the problem. Ignoring such episodes can even be fatal in many cases where the person may not be able to revive.
Misconception between Syncope and Heart Attack
It is a common misconception where people get confused between syncope and heart attack. Also, a lot of people start connecting paralysis to syncope. However, syncope is a very common syndrome where at least 40 per of the people must have experienced syncope once in their lifetime. As per Dr Kleir, syncope is maximum in adolescence to early adulthood (13-22 years old), and the next is during old age after the age of 55. The reasons in both cases are different.
Syncope Different Than Dizziness
In Dizziness, the person feels that the world around him or her is revolving. However, in syncope, the person experiencing the symptoms has a blackout and faints instantly. Both these syndromes are extremely different than each other and should be addressed without finding a correlation between the two.
DOCTOR TO CONSULT: A person having syncope should visit a cardiac electrophysiologist. However, the availability of this specialisation is a little scarce in India. In such cases, syncope can be reported to a cardiologist as well.
Early Warning Signs
Following are some of the warning signs of syncope. When any of these symptoms are felt, Dr Kleir suggests that one should just lie down immediately:
- Feeling of vomiting
- Racing heartbeats
- Excessive sweating
Wondering what to do when experiencing these symptoms, Dr Kleir suggests preventive measures:
- If possible, lie down immediately when you get the feeling of light-headedness as it may increase the blood flow to the brain
- Clinch both hands tightly to produce constrictions in the blood vessels.
- If experienced regularly, consult a specialist for medicines.
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