Postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS) is a fast heart rate (tachycardia) that starts after you stand up. This can suddenly happen as long as 10 minutes after you stand.
With POTS, the body does not control blood pressure or heart rate as it should after you stand up. So for a brief time, you may not get enough blood to your brain.
People with severe fatigue and dizziness may find it hard to keep up with daily living. But treatment can help.
POTS can make you feel dizzy and light-headed. You may faint. You may also feel tired. Blurred vision and feeling anxious are also symptoms. And you may have trouble with keeping your attention focused. Symptoms can range from mild to severe.
Some things can make symptoms worse. These include heat, eating, exercise, showering, sitting too long, and menstrual cycle changes.
When you first notice symptoms, sitting or lying down may help you feel better.
POTS may follow a viral illness, a surgery, pregnancy, bedrest, or a severe trauma. Experts don't understand what causes it, but different body systems seem to be out of balance.
To learn what is causing your symptoms, your doctor may:
Work with your doctor to find the right mix of treatments. These treatments may include:
Call 911 anytime you think you may need emergency care. For example, call if:
Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse call line if:
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
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Current as of: April 3, 2017
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
& Rakesh K. Pai, MD, FACC - Cardiology, Electrophysiology
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