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This change in position causes an abnormally high increase in heart rate, often accompanied by a sharp fall in blood pressure. The orthostatic tachycardia syndrome is a disabling state described since 1940. Patients are often unable to hold jobs or attend schools. POTS is common, affecting an undisclosed number of patients mostly in the age range of 12 to 50 years and mostly female (approximately 80%).
Symptoms of POTS
The most common symptoms of this condition are:
* Increased heart rate - This is definitely the main sign of POTS. The heart rate when changing from the supine to upright position can vary for more than 30 beats per minute or lead to a heart rate greater than 120 beats per minute within 10 minutes of stand-up position. POTS often generates a temporary rise in blood pressure immediately upon standing due to the rapid acceleration of the heart rate. Tachycardia is the body’s defense mechanism against the lack of sufficient venous blood returned to the heart.
* Frequent urination - Frequent urination is a common symptom of POTS. This problem is sometimes misdiagnosed as diabetes insipidus, which is a disease caused by the reduced production of a pituitary hormone called vasopressin.
* Reactive hypoglycemia - Reactive hypoglycemia is a common problem for POTS patients. It is a term used for abnormal lowering of the blood sugar levels. Although the complete mechanism still isn't clear, it is believed that it happens as a result of a complex series of neural and hormonal interactions. Researchers have come to understand that this lowering of blood sugar levels is not the only cause of symptoms, because patients’ bodies are also producing excessive amounts of adrenaline and other stress hormones.
- shortness of breath
- blurry vision and eye pain,
- tingling in the legs,
- numbness in palms and soles,
- difficulties with sleeping,
- heat and fatigue,
- low grade fevers, mild chills, and general flu like symptoms,