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Vasovagal syncope
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Vasovagal syncope

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Contributors: Carolyn Zyloney MD, Richard L. Barbano MD, PhD
Other Resources UpToDate PubMed

Synopsis

Vasovagal, or neurocardiogenic, syncope is a form of neurally mediated syncope that leads to a transient loss of consciousness. About 40% of people experience a syncopal episode at least once in their lifetime. Vasovagal syncope is the most common cause of syncope. It most frequently occurs in otherwise young and healthy individuals but may occur in older individuals. Often it is triggered by an emotional or orthostatic stress such as painful stimuli, venipuncture, fear of bodily injury, prolonged standing, exertion, or heat exposure. Some medications can also predispose to syncopal episodes due to provoking orthostatic hypotension, as outlined in the related topic: Drug-induced syncope.

Vasovagal syncope is thought to be due to a reflexive activation of the parasympathetic nervous system, often in response to a trigger. This can lead to bradycardia and decreased cardiac contractility, termed a cardioinhibitory response. Alternatively, there may be vasodilation with a corresponding decrease in blood pressure in the absence of a significant change in heart rate, termed a vasodepressor response. These hemodynamic changes result in systemic hypotension and cerebral hypoperfusion. Patients typically describe a prodrome of nausea, pallor, and diaphoresis followed by a brief episode of syncope from either the sitting or standing position. Consciousness is restored with the supine position, but patients may feel fatigued for some time after the event.

Codes

ICD10CM:
R55 – Syncope and collapse

SNOMEDCT:
398665005 – Vasovagal syncope

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Last Reviewed: 08/08/2018
Last Updated: 09/05/2018
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Vasovagal syncope
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Vasovagal syncope : Dizziness, Orthostatic hypotension, Syncope, Diaphoresis
Copyright © 2019 VisualDx®. All rights reserved.