Understanding Neurocardiogenic Syncope

There are thousands of diseases and conditions that people can have. Because of this, it’s hard to know of every single one, unless you’re in the medical field. Many of us will remember about conditions such as common flu, autism, and Alzheimer’s disease. However, how many of us know about neurocardiogenic syncope? Read on to find out about this condition that affects millions of individuals around the globe.

There is no arguing the statistics that autoimmune diseases, unresolved gut health issues and mysterious chronic health issues seem to be on the rise and our medical community is trying to keep up. — Danielle Swimm LCPC

What is Neurocardiogenic Syncope?

Neurocardiogenic syncope (NCS) is the most common form of dysautonomia. Dysautonomia is a condition where the nervous system does not function properly. There are several types of this disease and NCS is the most common. It is also referred to as vasovagal syncope.

NCS is primarily characterized by fainting, also called syncope. It is due to the body becoming overwhelmed and overreacting to specific triggers. These triggers cause heart rate and blood pressure to drop. In turn, blood flow to the brain is reduced. Reduced blood flow to the brain is what causes the person to faint.

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What are Some Common Triggers?

Almost anything can be a trigger for NCS if it causes enough distress. Common triggers are specific phobias that the person might have such as heights, spiders and even social interaction. Things that cause significant emotional and psychological stress can become a trigger.

Other physical triggers include high alcohol consumption, warm environments, and dehydration. Staying hydrated is essential for all conditions, as it allows the body to function and regulate itself adequately. Another physical trigger is tight clothing. The tightness of apparel may prevent blood from flowing correctly through your system.

In fact, some scientists say that an Autoimmune Disease is like “an allergy on the inside”. — Linda Walter LCSW

What are Other Symptoms?

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There are additional symptoms that a person may experience before a fainting spell. These symptoms include pale skin, light-headedness, and nausea. People may also experience tunnel vision, where the field of view narrows to only a small area right in front of them. People also report to experience cold sweat and clammy hands, or suddenly feeling warm.


How Fatal is NCS?

NCS in itself is not fatal. It causes only temporary reduced blood flow to your brain and will not cause damage. For most people, NCS is more inconvenient than dangerous, as it happens during impractical times.

What may be dangerous, however, is what happens when passing out. A person could hit their head during a fainting spell. It could also put them up to potential external danger such as robbery while they’re blacked out.

Because everyone experiences distress, the significance of the pain involved for individuals with these conditions is underestimated. — Deborah Barrett Ph.D., LCSW

How is it Treated?

Unfortunately, NCS cannot be entirely cured. However, it can be managed. First, it’s essential to establish that these fainting spells are not caused by any other medical condition such as heart disease.

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One way of managing NCS is through lifestyle changes. It’s beneficial to identify triggers to avoid them. Preparing for triggering events that you cannot avoid – such as getting an injection – is another way of managing. Performing activities that can help keep your blood pressure and heart rate up could help balance out the drop in these levels later on.

Medication is also available to aid those experiencing NCS. A pacemaker can also be used to help prevent fainting.