fainting? (collapsed last night_

A forum to discuss Chronic Cerebrospinal Venous Insufficiency and its relationship to Multiple Sclerosis.

fainting? (collapsed last night_

Postby zap » Fri Feb 12, 2010 10:08 am

I had some kind of vascular / blood pressure related incident last night that scared me and my GF pretty badly, and I'm wondering if others on here have problems with fainting - actually fall-on-the-floor-fainting - after getting up at night?

Last night I got stuck sleeping between my GF and my dog, which meant I pretty much HAD to sleep only on my left side to fit on the bed. I woke up, wanted to flip over, couldn't, went back to sleep .... then was woken up a short time later by my left calf muscle cramping up horribly (which has never happened to me before). It was rock hard and painful.

I leapt out of the bed to try to walk it off, went to the bathroom and urinated - and then suddenly almost totally lost consciousness, falling to the bathroom floor. (I don't think I was light-headed beforehand but maybe I just didn't notice due to the pain in my calf?)

(something similar to this has happened before: http://www.thisisms.com/ftopicp-57728-f ... html#57728)

I didn't ever totally lose consciousness, just control of my body. It took several minutes to recover, unlike a normal faint, which clears up in seconds in my experience.

Afterward, I seemed mostly OK but my pupils were both quite large and I couldn't seem to make them shrink, even by staring directly at a 150 watt lightbulb at close range.

so ...

I want to believe that I just had a new MS symptom (leg spasm), got up too fast and fainted as a result ... but I wonder if I may have had a TIA, or some other neurological event?

I had an MRV scan @ Stanford that didnt see anything, but I have long suspected something is amiss with my blood pressure (when I was first having MS symptoms I was convinced it was a blood pressure problem due to the way my blood would just pound in my head when I took a hot bath ...)

I'm going to write up what happened and email my neuro, but he is a MS specialist who pretty much brushes off much of what I tell him that doesn't fit his auto-immune pharma-treated paradigm, so ....

:?

Anyone else faint? Could transient cramping/seized muscles of MS be not from nerve damage, but from low blood oxygen? Other thoughts?
Last edited by zap on Fri Feb 12, 2010 11:14 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby zap » Fri Feb 12, 2010 10:13 am

oops, meant to add:

If it matters, I had taken

-modest amount of marijuana in the evening (vasodilator?)

- a 24 hour antihistamine allergy pill at 7 PM (vasocontrictor)

- coffee throughout the day & one can soda @ PM (caffeine - vasoconstrictor)
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Re: I collapsed last night

Postby ErikaSlovakia » Fri Feb 12, 2010 10:28 am

zap wrote:
Anyone else faint?

I do, so twice a year, I think it is only for couple of seconds, I am very tired after but OK next morning. I do not know why. Last time I fainted it was last August I think.
I was 10 I think when it was for the first time. Doctors do not know why.
I do not think about it. When I start to feel I am going to faint for sure I learnt to lie down so I do not hurt myself. It is simply part of my life.
Erika
Aug. 7, 09 Doppler Ultras. in Poland, left Jugul. valve problem, RRMS since 1996, now SPMS,
- Nov.3,09: one stent in the left jug. vein in Katowice, Poland, LDN, never on DMDs
- Jan. 19, 11: control venography in Katowice - negative but I feel worse
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Postby hoodyup » Fri Feb 12, 2010 11:02 am

I don't mean to be alarmist, but you might want to get checked out for possible stroke ASAP. My uncle Stinky, who smokes cigarettes (among other things) had a few fainting incidents and later found he was having mini-strokes. He had a major one which made him partially paralyzed temporarily because he didn't get in to the doctor for a whole day. They gave him blood thinners and he eventually recovered from the paralysis and loss of equilibrium, but still gets vertigo ocasionally. I think he still smokes, too. I don't know all the symptoms, but what you had sounds serious. Just my 2 cents. Hope you get better soon.

Andrew
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Postby willm » Fri Feb 12, 2010 11:58 am

Hi Zap

You might want to look up a condition called Micturition Syncope.

I have had the exact same experience as yours and my GP said it was this.

I believe it has something to do with low blood pressure - mine is low as are many MSers.

I also experienced it when self-catheterising which is well-documented as occuring in people with spinal chord damage (I am PPMS with lesions in my spinal column)

Hope this helps
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Postby Cece » Fri Feb 12, 2010 3:45 pm

Have you had any issues since then? It sounds like you don't expect much from your neurologist, but maybe you should talk to your regular doctor. It's easy to sweep everything under the m.s. umbrella, but like you said it could be a mini TIA or something.
"However, the truth in science ultimately emerges, although sometimes it takes a very long time," Arthur Silverstein, Autoimmunity: A History of the Early Struggle for Recognition
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Postby nicko » Fri Feb 12, 2010 4:56 pm

I've had a few similar incidents over the last 5 years. The only scary thing is I don't get any warning at all. Not dizzy or light headed, nothing. The last thing I remember is being fine.

Once was in the bathroom, gave myself a shot of rebif and was brushing my teeth. Woke up in a puddle of blood, gave myself a nice smack on the nose when i went down.

Another time I was visiting a friend out on his patio. We had a couple beer each. Same thing I went down without notice, he was more scared then me. Although this time my friend could tell me how long I was out. He said about half a minute.

The most recent time, I got up out of bed to have a pee and didn't make it there. I wokeup halfway through the bathroom door.

When I wake up I feel fine, pretty much instantly.
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Postby bluesky63 » Fri Feb 12, 2010 5:51 pm

There are so many reasons a person might lose consciousness, and it's always worth getting it checked out. If you're dizzy first and then you kind of black out it could be low blood pressure, but if you suddenly lose consciousness you could be having an arrhythmia or a seizure or a TIA.

Those could be serious! Never assume you know the reason. Please see your doctor and get it checked out. Don't let your doctor ignore it. Good luck. :-)
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Postby L » Fri Feb 12, 2010 6:32 pm

Might be tachycardia - abnormaly fast heart rate. Some people think that this is a 'panic attack.'

I used to get runs of tachycardia and I passed out once too. I went to hospital after a pulse of 220 was going on for an hour!

The doctors did tests on me (one involving catheters in arteries and electrical shocks to the heart was unbearable - this put me off the idea of CCSVI from the word go. More catheters in veins or arteries is almost more to bear than I can imagine.)

I controlled it by avoiding caffeine. I used to drink lots of coffee. No coffee and no dark chocolate for me now. I also drank lots of alcohol (I was a student :) ) and now I avoid excess alcohol. Red wine can trigger a few skipped heart beats with me as well. The doctors thought that to implant a defibrillator in my chest was the way to go. It turned out that I was right, I knew that I was all along. Despite predictions of an imminent death I have gone years without a racing heartbeat. Well, one or two occasions only, but nothing that didn't last longer than a few seconds.

There are two types. Sinus rhythm, supra-ventricular tachycardia (the aorta, I think, is beating fast) amd ventricular tachycardia (the ventricle is beating fast). I would have the former but they were concerned that I was capable of having the latter also.

So that's my story.

PS Marijuana gives me tachycardia too. I always disliked being stoned anyway. Mind you, that could be the reason..
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Postby bluesky63 » Fri Feb 12, 2010 7:22 pm

When people actually have a sudden loss of consciousness it can often be a heart rhythm problem -- the rhythm can be too fast or too slow. And like you say, L, a disturbance can come from the atria or from the ventricles. Most arrhythmias are annoying, uncomfortable, and inconvenient, but some can be life-threatening, so a loss of consciousness should always be checked out.

L, it's funny that your experience with your tachycardia made you decide against a CCSVI procedure -- I have the opposite reaction! I have had two radiofrequency catheter ablations, one for Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome and one for atrial tachycardia. The first was was seven hours. I figured that after going through all of that, a CCSVI procedure would be simple. :-)

Maybe you didn't have adequate medication/pain support? It shouldn't be so stressful for the person going through it - I'm so sorry you had such a difficult procedure. Congratulations on getting your tachycardia situation under control. Now I hope you can also get your MS taken care of. :-)

A couple of syncope links, if anyone is interested:

http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/162110-overview

http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/1159181-overview

http://my.clevelandclinic.org/heart/dis ... ncope.aspx

And in some people MS itself can mess with your autonomic system and your heart rate, of course.
Last edited by bluesky63 on Fri Feb 12, 2010 7:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby greenandchic » Fri Feb 12, 2010 7:28 pm

I have fainted a few times in my life. The last time it happened it landed me in the ER and had to get my face sewn up by a plastic surgeon :oops: so its not something I take lightly. It could have been much worse (losing teeth and eye, etc) This was a few years before I was diagnosed with MS and they said the cause was "low blood sodium" according to my blood tests, but they didn't really know for sure. Ever time it happened, it happened in the morning right after waking up. Not sure if it has anything to do with MS in my case.

My blood pressure is always low too - not sure if that has anything to do with MS.
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Postby tzootsi » Sat Feb 13, 2010 9:08 pm

Zap,
I fainted twice and both times it was due to dehydration. The first time the weather was hot and I was walking around in the sun in town and I got tired,sat down and passed out and the second time I was in Paris sightseeing, not really drinking any liquid all day and I got weak and fell to the floor at my daughters apartment. So maybe you did not get enough fluid all day!!
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Postby Dovechick » Sat Feb 13, 2010 9:25 pm

greenandchic wrote:I have fainted a few times in my life. The last time it happened it landed me in the ER and had to get my face sewn up by a plastic surgeon :oops: so its not something I take lightly. It could have been much worse (losing teeth and eye, etc) This was a few years before I was diagnosed with MS and they said the cause was "low blood sodium" according to my blood tests, but they didn't really know for sure. Ever time it happened, it happened in the morning right after waking up. Not sure if it has anything to do with MS in my case.

My blood pressure is always low too - not sure if that has anything to do with MS.

My daughter has had similar episodes when she was small including one fit age 11. The doctors could not tell what was wrong with her either. Low blood pressure, was also a problem and still is although the fainting seems to have subsided the older she got. These fainting bouts seemed to come without warning, one minute she was standing, the next she had fallen to the floor. The only explanation the doctors could offer was low blood sugar...
It will be interesting to see how her blood pressure changes after the procedure on Thursday. Keep you posted.
Michele,  warrior4MS, mother and champion for Ella, the MSer. The solution is out there we just have to ask the right questions.
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Postby ama » Sat Feb 13, 2010 9:58 pm

I have a low systolic blood pressure it´is about 120-130 but in relation I have a high diastolic blood pressure between 80-90 sometimes 100 and over. So is it possible the diastolic blood pressure is linked to venous problems? Do somebody know something about that?
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Postby oryx » Mon Feb 22, 2010 1:31 am

The lesions in my brain were first detected after 4 episodes of loss of consciousness. One of the incidents happened a little while after getting up after a prolonged period of sitting wiht my legs tucked under me. Its a very bad pose, I know and blood circulation in the lower extremes were probably cut off. Plus I was menstruating. Another time I was at the doctor's place and he said that my BP was low. Three out of the four cases I was on erythromyzine, with low BP.
The letter writer was sleeping with a bad posture. But its worth mentioning this to a doctor and ruling out other complexities.
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