Document Detail

Dizziness and loss of consciousness. Cardiovascular causes.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  12735259     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
BACKGROUND: Dizziness and loss of consciousness are common clinical problems presenting in general practice. OBJECTIVE: This article aims to provide the practitioner with a pragmatic and logical approach to identifying the cardiovascular causes of dizziness and loss of consciousness. DISCUSSION: A range of disorders with varying pathology cause a transient loss of consciousness associated with postural collapse (syncope) by interruption of blood flow to the brain. Syncope and seizures are the only common causes of recurrent episodes of loss of consciousness. The vasovagal reaction or 'common faint' and postural hypotension are both common and benign causes of syncope. Syncope can also result from cardiac causes that include disorders of cardiac rhythm and mechanical obstruction to cardiac output. Cardiac causes of syncope are associated with much higher morbidity and mortality than postural hypotension or fainting. Specific treatment is available for the various cardiac causes of syncope and thus accurate diagnosis is imperative.
Jeremy J Wright; Leonard F Arnolda
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Australian family physician     Volume:  32     ISSN:  0300-8495     ISO Abbreviation:  Aust Fam Physician     Publication Date:  2003 Apr 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2003-05-08     Completed Date:  2003-05-23     Revised Date:  2004-11-17    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0326701     Medline TA:  Aust Fam Physician     Country:  Australia    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  207-10     Citation Subset:  IM    
Advanced Heart Failure and Cardiac Transplant Unit, Royal Perth Hospital, Western Australia.
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MeSH Terms
Cardiovascular Diseases / complications*
Dizziness / epidemiology,  etiology*
Medical History Taking / methods
Physical Examination / methods
Syncope / classification,  epidemiology,  etiology*
Unconsciousness / etiology*

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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