Trauma and Vagal Syncope

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Vagal Syncope and Trauma

Vagal Syncope and its Relation to Motor Vehicle Accidents (MVA)

When it comes to car accidents, there is a lot to think about. Injuries, insurance, and vehicle damage are all big concerns. But what about something called “vagal syncope”? Dr. Aaron Workman, a respected member of one of Lexington’s highest rated auto injury medical care facilities, Chambers Medical Group, discusses vagal syncope.

I commonly hear it referred to as “I about passed out.”  It can be confusing if you do not know what is happening. It is a term used to describe a situation where a person faints or passes out due to a sudden drop in heart rate and blood pressure. Sometimes, this can happen after a car accident, and I had a patient ask me about it this week that had just suffered a car accident (MVA).

The Nerve Connection:

To understand why vagal syncope might occur after an accident, you need to know about the vagus nerve. Think of it as your body’s internal traffic cop. It helps control your heart rate and blood pressure. Sometimes, when your body goes through a sudden shock, like an MVA, this nerve can get a bit confused. The shock and fear from the accident can trigger an overreaction in the vagus nerve. If you are in pain from injuries, your body might react by trying to lower your heart rate and blood pressure.

The Stress Response:

Car accidents are stressful, and your body agrees. When the accident happens, your stress response kicks in. Your body releases adrenaline, which can increase your heart rate and blood pressure. But sometimes, the vagus nerve overreacts and tries to slow everything down too quickly, causing you to faint.

Common Symptoms:

I have experienced this myself, watched it occur with family members and it is a cold sweat suddenly appearing type of faint feeling. You may feel lightheaded or like the world is spinning. Your stomach may feel queasy, and you could even throw up. You may suddenly feel a rush of cold sweat. Your vision may get fuzzy, and you could even pass out, faint, or lose consciousness.

What to Do if You Suspect Vagal Syncope:

It is essential to get checked out by a healthcare professional. If you suspect it is related to an auto accident, we can help guide you through this at Chambers Medical Group. Although not a common occurrence, I am asked about this frequently enough to know it can be an issue.

How to Help You:

In the meantime, do not rush back to your normal activities. Gradually ease back into your routine. You cannot always control how your body reacts to stress or shock, but there are some things you can do to reduce the risk of fainting. Stay calm. If I feel that cold sweat in certain situations, I quickly turn my attention to calming down. If this happens after an accident, take slow, deep breaths to help keep your stress levels in check. Drink plenty of water to help maintain your blood pressure. Always wear your seatbelt when driving or riding in a car to reduce the risk of accidents.

Remember, your health always comes first, especially after an accident. Vagal syncope can be a bit scary, but understanding it is the first step in dealing with it. If you have been in a car accident and experience symptoms like dizziness, nausea, or fainting, it is crucial to see a doctor. They can help you figure out what is going on and make sure you are on the road to recovery. Remember, your health always comes first, especially after an accident.

— This article is written by Aaron Workman, DC, one of the members of Chambers Medical Group’s team of car accident chiropractors who offer a variety of treatments and therapies ranging from diagnostic testing to various soft tissue therapies for car accidents and injuries in Kentucky.

















































Have you been in a car accident? If you or somebody you know has been in a car accident, be sure that you seek medical attention from a car accident doctor or car accident chiropractor to treat your injuries. Visit Chambers Medical Group  to receive world-class medical treatment for your injuries.

Chambers Medical Group has car accident medical clinics in the following locations:

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